Synchronous and asynchronous: how to put together the best virtual training course
For the foreseeable future, the days of face-to-face live training are over. The corona crisis forces you to provide online training. If you’re a trainer who’s looking for suitable tools that will facilitate online training courses, a webinar tool is probably the first thing that comes to mind. Because that’s all you need. Right? Well, not exactly. If you really want to provide a solid online training course, it’s often necessary to combine a synchronous tool (such as an application for video conferencing) and an asynchronous environment (such as a blended learning platform).
What’s the difference?
When ‘moving’ a training course in a physical space to an online environment, you’ll need to get together in two virtual ways:
- Through the synchronous route: meeting each other live and face-to-face, in which case only a screen will separate people from each other.
- Through the asynchronous route: learning independently and not communicating simultaneously.
The golden combination
If you used to organize nothing but live meetings, the synchronous part will likely be key to you. Take a moment to consider the gaps in between sessions, though. Wouldn’t it be great to fill these gaps using an asynchronous tool such as a blended learning platform, which allows participants to study training materials in their own time and interact? It will keep them involved and help them prepare better for live sessions.
Basically, the asynchronous part interconnects all synchronous meetings, turning your training course into a coherent whole. That’s very useful, because scheduling live meetings takes a lot of effort. You need to make the most of live sessions – they should revolve around social interaction and in-depth discussions.
Balancing on the line
There’s a thin line between synchronous and asynchronous, and the two areas often blend into one another. Suppose you’re holding a presentation in which you mainly convey information. If you record it and post it to the blended learning platform, everyone can watch the video in their own time. If, however, more interaction is required, you can combine synchronous and asynchronous – for example, by organizing a live webinar (synchronously) and uploading it to the blended learning platform afterwards, so participants who were unable to attend can watch it whenever suits them best (asynchronously).
After watching a video or studying training materials, participants in the asynchronous environment may want to ask questions. If you allow them to do so on the discussion board in the blended learning environment, it will result in interaction. Everyone can reply at a time that suits them best. But if participants reply almost simultaneously, they find themselves in a (nearly) synchronous situation!
Want to provide solid training courses?
Briefly put, setting up Zoom and getting started with your virtual training course isn’t a good approach. You need tools for the synchronous and asynchronous parts to provide the best possible training course.
Do you want to know more about a user-friendly blended learning platform that facilitates these efforts? Don’t hesitate to contact us. We’d be happy to discuss your opportunities.