Online Learning Support

This blog post is provided by guest blogger, Carol Sheetz, graduate student in the online Master of Science degree program in Training and Development at the University of St. Francis in Joliet, Illinois.

The Association for Talent Development (ATD) reports that supporting online learning efforts is crucial to the success of the learner and the organization.  Learning and development administrators can support the learning initiatives in an organization by

implementing some of these suggested practices.

Build and communicate a shared vision – A learner is more likely to be successful when the goals and needs of an organization are clearly communicated, when learning is challenging and rewarding, and when the learning outcome helps an organization’s objectives.

Foster collaboration, interaction, and teamwork – When there is shared responsibility, online learning that is collaborative and emphasizes teamwork will be effective.  Online learners should share and discuss their learning goals with their peers.

Empower employees with participative work processes – Online learners will feel empowered when they take ownership of their learning trajectory and when their learning outcomes correlate and enhance their skills, knowledge, and competencies at work.

Encourage and provide the opportunity for continuous learning – Provide online learning resources that allows flexible access to important information.  It is also imperative to support a culture of feedback.  Allow online learners to enjoy the learning process, not just the outcome.

Use relevant technologies – Online learners need effective technological tools to be successful.

Online learners in the workplace need support from the learning and development administrators in their organization to overcome remaining focused, time management, and goal setting challenges.  Workplace online learning can be challenging but rewarding.  Online learners can achieve and be successful when they have a sound strategy and the full support of their organization.


Neelen, M., & Kirschner, P. A. (2017, April 20). How to support self-directed learning in a learning organization. Retrieved from ATD – Association for Talent Development:

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