Metaverse Training For eLearning – eLearning Industry

Metaverse training

When Mark Zuckerberg announced Facebook’s resale to Meta, the term metaverse became a buzzword overnight. In addition to arousing excitement, this concept has aroused interest in its potential to influence the future of digital interaction. Neal Stephenson coined the term “metaverse” in his science fiction novel Snow crash, in which he proposed lifelike avatars that interact with each other in realistic 3D buildings and other Virtual Reality (VR) environments. In January 2022, Google and Microsoft followed suit and announced investments in the metaverse. According to Statista, the metaverse market size is expected to reach $ 47.48 billion, before rising to $ 678.8 billion by 2030.

The metaverse refers to an online environment where Augmented Reality (AR) and Virtual Reality can coexist. It offers a fresh digital world to collaborate, solve and practice problems, with an interactive engagement method. The metaverse enables people to learn faster, retain information better and manage their own learning experience. This environment simulates the physical world while incorporating digital tools and allowing learners to communicate as avatars. Metaverse activities can replace real experiences, and with the development of the metaverse, learners can have increasingly authentic experiences of presence in other realms.

Technologies that play a major role in the metaverse

1. Virtual reality

Virtual reality refers to a 3D and computer-generated virtual environment that either repeats or creates the illusion of a real world and has the potential to deliver a truly immersive and engaging learning experience. Using VR as part of the training experience will allow learners to learn and develop in ways that go beyond a classroom environment. VR allows learners to experience real-life situations without compromising their safety in the real world. One of the most notable uses of VR is seen in the video game industry.

2. Augmented reality

In Augmented Reality, objects are created and enhanced with real-time text, graphics, audio, and virtual information. It enhances the digital experience by combining the natural environment and the virtual space where the objects interact with the world. AR is most suitable for specific technical training where learners may require quick reference to technical information to make a repair or use machinery. By reducing distractions and attracting learners’ attention, it increases physical engagement with digital content.

Impact of the metaverse on the learning domain

Industries dealing with high-risk environments such as manufacturing, energy and construction are already taking advantage of metaverse learning. Now other industries are showing interest and exploring the space to improve their training programs. The metaverse provides an infinitely extensive learning environment that provides a learner-centered experience because of the emotional and cognitive effect that can be achieved by creating true immersions. With the increasing number of organizations moving to remote or hybrid workplaces, managers not only appreciate the need, but adopt new approaches to training and developing their teams to stay agile and competitive. Metaverse collaborative techniques enable learners to become involved in any environment or situation. By using the metaverse in collaboration with Learning and Development (L&D), learners will be able to set aside their physical limitations and experience new ways of learning.

The metaverse will revolutionize training and skills development, drastically reducing the time required to develop and learn new skills. Experiential learning is the most effective way to learn, according to a recent study, which showed that learning through experience increases learning quality and retains information better by up to 75%. Due to metaverse learning, simulations will be avatar-based, aimed at collaborative learning as well as interactive work. Research firm Gartner predicts that by 2026, 25% of people will spend at least an hour a day in the metaverse. A few use cases for the metaverse that emerge in every industry are:

1. On-board training

Employees on board, and training employees on various services / products and company policies can be daunting and time consuming. The metaverse is an intuitive solution where the new employees join the virtual space and are familiar with the organization’s culture and ethics. In addition to benefiting the new employees, the metaverse also helps the organization by reducing training time and creating lasting impressions.

2. Safety training

Organizations apply this technology for crucial training to engage learners, provide practice and provide immediate feedback. The metaverse provides learners with an immersive safety training experience in which learners can become familiar with the threats and risks at the workplace while remaining completely safe.

3. Sales training

The days of classroom-based training are over. The metaverse is used to provide improved training to employees. Trainers and sales staff along with their managers can meet in the metaverse for sales training. The use of storytelling and branching scenarios helps employees to be prepared for various situations and also guides their learning experiences.

4. Skills training

One of the direct costs associated with personal training is materials. The metaverse allows learners to make mistakes without exhausting physical material. It facilitates learning without hesitation and saves resources. Metaverse training is used not only for technical training but also for soft skills training. Metaverse avatars help nurture important skills such as communication, teamwork, customer service and skills that people face. The metaverse platform enables learners to gain practical experience that speeds up their learning process and increases efficiency.

In addition, the metaverse can be used to virtualize different types of training. It can be used to develop a complete training set-up — classroom, stage, stage, and benches for a real-life experience. In training sessions, students can appear as avatars, as real as possible, or as fictional as desired.

How the Metaverse adds value to training

In the era of e-learning, employers strive to create more interactive and engaging learning experiences for their employees. Learning through the metaverse enables learners to gain experience and exposure. It allows L&D teams to link engaging content and include storytelling methodologies to express learning in new and exciting ways. With their 3D technology, and interactive design and modules, VR and AR offer a powerful vehicle for more meaningful learning. The metaverse can benefit eLearning in several ways:

1. Learner-centered solution

Today’s learners want contextual learning with which they can identify and keep up. Metaverse environments are fascinating, exciting and interactive places to learn and practice, without limiting time or using materials. It increases employee engagement by creating a compelling learning environment that enables learners to learn in real time and communicate with colleagues, managers and trainers. The more actively learners are involved in learning, the more effective the outcomes. This type of learning is an advanced form of active learning that creates a fully simulated learning environment, using extensive role play or situations where learners interact with the experience. These features have made metaverse technology a popular tool for creating immersive learning environments. On top of that, learning what’s fun will be more effective.

2. Better decision making

With the help of the metaverse, organizations can provide more opportunities for learners to learn and access knowledge. The metaverse helps with decision making as everything can be measured. Understanding learner behavior in the metavers and how they engage and access information today will help identify opportunities where their experience can be improved. Learning analysis provides an in-depth understanding of how learners progress and achieve their goals. Measuring the effectiveness of training programs helps organizations find out what a learner needs when needed, and decide whether or not training courses work for a particular set of employees. The virtual world will continue to grow and evolve based on decisions and actions taken to increase employee engagement and efficiency.

3. Addressing the hybrid workplace

Organizations have changed the way they hire, work and collaborate with their employees as a result of the pandemic. As almost every organization has switched to a work-from-home or hybrid workplace model, connecting and collaborating with employees has become increasingly challenging. The metaverse has the potential to address all the existing challenges for teleworking. It provides organizations with the means to use it for department-centered training, large-scale opportunities and everything in between. It provides managers with a virtual environment where they can meet employees (their avatars), communicate with them and maintain personal interaction. The virtual space can be dedicated to different teams for collaboration to help solve critical business problems. Using avatars, the metaverse enables the organization’s communication and collaboration to become much more interactive. It helps employees and employers grow together.

Final Thoughts

As technologies evolve, we need to constantly look at more sophisticated modalities and their learning effectiveness. The metaverse is the next evolution of the internet and it has already begun. The metaverse will have a significant impact on e-learning, giving the virtual learning environment a more lifelike feel and making learning itself more engaging and experiential. Organizations need to choose their learning modality wisely and ensure that it matches what learners want and the business requirements.

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