Elearning, also known as electronic learning, is the method of delivering learning through digital resources. 

The concept of elearning dates all the way back to the 90s, where the trend started emerging with the usage of interactive CD-ROMS and PDF files. In the early 2000s, the development of technology made the concept of elearning more advanced, that’s when Learning Management Systems (LMS) came in place. Few early examples of LMS were FirstClass and Moodle

Fast forward to today, elearning has evolved tremendously to include virtual classrooms, augmented reality and even artificial intelligence. The rapid growth of digital connectivity, information and technology has given elearning the stimulus it needed to advance.

ELearning is here to stay. As we look at these trends, it’s clear that the industry continues to progress and evolve. It has slowly become the main way to deliver knowledge to everyone, regardless of age, occupation and setting. A recent study shows that having a good elearning software improves employee’s productivity by 15%-25%. Additionally, 43% of companies who utilize elearning generate more income compared to those who do not. 

Here are 5 global trends on learning and development that will continue to develop in the foreseeable future.


Learning Analysis 

A significant factor that influences elearning trends is learning analytics. How do you tell if training is really having an impact on your learners? Having actionable insights and  understanding the factors you need to evaluate your learners’ performance is key, especially with the future of A.I. – the more information you have, the better your insights will be. 

Everything about the modern workplace is changing. A distributed workforce where your employees are not tied down to physical locations is now the norm, and there is also the influx of collaborative softwares like Zoom and Google Drive to allow better communication with colleagues around the world in real time.

With these drastic shifts, workplace training ought to evolve with the changing needs of your workforce as well. In order to make the right changes, the learning team should rely on learning analytics to make decisions.

Data on learners’ progress will allow you to monitor whether learners are actively engaging with your elearning program. If the progress rates are slow, you may want to consider tweaking your content or processes within the program.

Test results, course completion rates, engagement rates and time spent on learning are just some of the other metrics you can monitor to enhance training.


Social Learning 

Social learning is based on a theory developed by psychologist Albert Bandura that proposes learning is a cognitive process that takes place in a social context and occurs purely through observation or direct instruction. This theory considers how both environmental and cognitive factors interact to influence human learning and behaviour.  

In traditional learning environments, most people recall only 10% of the information taught within 72 hours. Social learning on the other hand, allows learners to gain knowledge through engagement, instead of having all the information pushed onto them. 

The social learning theory works best when learners are placed in an environment with other learners, to learn by observing and modelling the behaviour of others. Some familiar examples of social learning that have been implemented in elearning are gamification leaderboards, forum discussions, direct message function, comment box or even a virtual “study buddy”. These features stimulate an environment whereby learners can observe the behaviour of others, and model the behavior if it results in outcomes they value.

By implementing social learning, it creates an integrated environment for organisations, where peers can communicate seamlessly while learning through informal chats, forums, shared discussions and documents. As social learning applications continue to develop, more collaborative tools will likely enter the market in the near future. 


Mobile Learning 

In this fast paced working environment, there’s no doubt that everyone appreciates the ability to do things while on-the-go. With 6.4 billion smartphone users worldwide, smartphone usage is expected to continue to increase in the coming years, breaching seven billion in 2024 before rising further to 7.5 billion by 2026.

Phones have become an indispensable part of daily life for billions of people. A study from eLogic Learning states that 99% of mobile learners claim that mobile learning enhances their experience. With mobile learning or m-learning (you may call it), learners can learn and receive information anytime, anywhere, all they need is access to their mobile phone. 



Microlearning is essentially applying the phrase “Less is more” — breaking up large chunks of information into small nuggets of content. A study in the Journal of Applied Psychology found that microlearning was 17% more efficient in transferring knowledge than traditional learning. 

In order for learners not to feel overwhelmed by the sheer amount of information they need to process, bite-sized content is the most efficient way for quick knowledge consumption and better information retention. With all the talks about efficiency, micro-learning is nothing unfamiliar. Learning might not be your employees’ top priority when they have a list of work to be done. However, it is not impossible for learning to take place in the workplace.

The number one reason why learners’ don’t feel engaged in the workplace is because they don’t have time. This is where microlearning comes into play, all they need is 5 – 10 minutes. Knowing that learning will only take up less than 1% of their day makes it much easier for learners to commit. 

Microlearning also complements the trend of mobile learning, where learners can consume bite-sized lessons on the go using their smartphones. 


Immersive Learning

Immersive Learning includes Augmented reality (AR), Virtual Reality (VR), Mixed Reality (MR). These technologies have the potential to shift the paradigm of e-learning.

Bosch Automotive, for example, uses AR to assist service technicians and consumers to repair cars. Their platform displays writing and block diagrams, which help diagnose the causes of issues and locate the part responsible for the fault. Once the user hovers the device over the area, the system shows the names of various elements, including the ones hidden from view. The developers claim that this software helps technicians to learn about the problems better to aid solution development, as well as decreasing the time spent on repairs by 15% per step. 

Virtual Reality (VR) on the other hand, encompasses the use of 360 degree photography, real interactions and other interesting elements which combine to bridge the gap between theory and real-life application. 


It’s incredible to see how far elearning has come, from the usage of CD-ROMS to mobile learning and immersive learning. The trends covered above are just the few main ones that will shape the industry and pave the way for more advancements to come. ELearning is revolutionizing the way we think about knowledge transfer, and we are excited to see how much more further it will go.

As the elearning sector grows, it’s time to pay close attention to these new developments – rethink your training programs and reevaluate your approach to consider the changing needs of your learners especially in times of uncertainty. 

If you are interested in knowing more about how elearning works, feel free to speak to us here