Virtual Training Sucks!...

March 2 2017

By: Glenn Reid

People think Virtual Training Sucks, but does it really?

Some people in the past have had bad experiences with Virtual Instructor Led Training(VILT). Usually these were the early adopters and the technology to do it right wasn’t mature. That has since changed, and there is an abundance of excellent tools available to provide a great experience. This is evident as VILT is booming and is now accepted as a valid proven delivery method with some great advantages.

What is VILT training?

It is not eLearning. Think of VILT as live traditional training where the instructor just happens to be in a different room and you will be communicating with the instructor through the computer. At all times, you will be able to interact and communicate with the instructor and other students. You will still be part of a class where there are multiple points of views with questions. Communication can be done by chat or voice and it is usually your preference on how you want to communicate.

There are multiple benefits to VILT training. The primary benefit that is often thought of is cost savings (i.e. travel and lodging); however, other benefits that the student will get include diversity, shared knowledge, and more family/friend time. Having people from different locations and backgrounds promotes shared knowledge and experiences. Unless you live in a large city such as Toronto, you may have travel to attend a course; if you are unable to travel because of other commitments, VILT might be the answer.

How Does VILT Work?

At LearningBrick we utilize several tools. For the communication portion, we utilize Adobe Connect, which allows us to share screens, communicate via audio and chat messages, share white boards, perform quizzes, etc. The instructor utilizes this tool to run the classroom in a fully interactive environment, keeping students involved and engaged.

The other tool we use is our virtual computer labs. The virtual labs allow us to give the student access to a fully configured environment where they will perform interactive lab exercises. For example, in a IT technical course the student may require access to multiple systems in a variety of configurations to emulate a typical business environment. This virtual environment is real and fully functional - students can perform real time changes that will affect how they work and perform. It is a great learning tool, and the labs are usually available to the students after they leave class for 180 days.

What do I need to have?

A successful VILT learning experience does require some key ingredients:

  • Good quality internet connection
  • Speakers or a headset
  • Suggested to have a microphone and web cam
  • Good environment for learning – somewhere where you won’t be easily interrupted by others. Some keys to reducing interruption include organizing your interruptions, checking mail at breaks, turning off texts, and letting people know you are in a course and only allow interruptions in case of high priority issues.
  • A good, knowledgeable instructor who interactively communicates with their students utilizing the VILT tool set.

Summation:

The fastest growing method of delivering training is VILT. The delivery method is maturing and trainers are quickly embracing it. At LearningBrick, we believe VILT is a great addition to the delivery methods available.

If you have any questions, please send me an email at glenn@learningbrick.com