Why a Seamless Learner Experience is Critical for Continuing Education

This guest blog is written by Adam Green of Rievent, a partner in the Silverchair Universe program.

When it comes to continuing education (CE) for professionals, we live in the era of more.

More professionals across more disciplines are seeking CE than in the past. More of these learners expect to obtain their CE online. More learners have more opportunities to access scholarly content via the web.

As the demand for online CE increases, education providers are seeking technologies that meet the needs of their learners. Specifically, they’re looking for tools that integrate CE with familiar content platforms while empowering learners to manage their own CE information.

They’re trying to build a seamless learner experience – and with good reason.

CE integration solves business problems.

If you’re a publisher, it’s a given that you’re using a content delivery platform. But while you may be in good shape when it comes to publishing your content online, you’re likely dealing with other challenging technology issues:

  • How can we make it easier for subscribers to get CE credit while they read our journals?
  • Will subscribers always have to log into a separate application for CE?
  • Why can’t we just put CE activities here, right where the content is, instead of sending learners to another website?
On the surface, these are technology problems. Dig a little deeper, and it’s clear that they’re business problems, too.

For example, when subscribers have a hard time getting CE credit, they can’t enjoy the full value of their subscription. Multiple applications for CE, content, and other offerings make CE participation a chore for learners. If there are other opportunities to earn CE credit, learners might take them.

The right kind of CE integration can solve those business problems by:

  1. Making content and CE activities part of the same experience
  2. Allowing learners or subscribers to log in to one application, not several
  3. Simplifying the process of earning CE while studying scholarly material
Following such an integration, obtaining CE becomes easier for learners. They don’t have to struggle; they won’t be confused; and they can get what they need (CE credit) faster. As an organization, you can meet their expectations for CE that’s highly available and free from participation hurdles.

Less administration goes hand in hand with learner empowerment.

You and your staff probably spend many hours each month preparing reports, creating and sending certificates, fielding learner requests, or entering data into spreadsheets. However, in the case of CE, a lot of those tasks are things learners could be doing themselves.

Take CE certificates. Learners need them. You have to create them. And if you have to generate certificates for different types of credit from different types of accredited providers, certificate generation can take up a lot of your time.

Instead, you could allow learners to access to their own certificate following completion of an activity. They do it on their own without your involvement. Learners are the ones who generate the certificate, download it, and print it out as needed.

Allowing learners to handle tasks like this isn’t so much “shifting the burden” as providing a self-support option. Learners want to have control over tasks like this because it helps them get what they need, faster.

For learners, it’s a better CE experience. For you, it’s an opportunity to reduce administrative tedium.

The bottom line? Prioritize the learner experience.

Prioritize it for subscribers. For members. For the professional communities your organization serves.

By elevating the learner experience, you not only clear the way for application integrations that solve business problems. You also free up more hours for yourself and your team.

To learn more about Rievent’s continuing education software options for publishers, visit our Silverchair Universe Partner page.

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