The Impacts a Learner Response System Can Have in the Classroom

The Impacts a Learner Response System Can Have in the Classroom

Gareth McLaughlin (eBay, Ireland)
Copyright: © 2017 |Pages: 29
DOI: 10.4018/978-1-5225-1808-2.ch004


Organisational leaders are continually looking for ways to get the most out of employee learning. By maximizing learning transfer the organisation places itself in a very powerful position. The introduction of new technologies that help to enhance learning is coming on stream but typically organisations will ask “does it warrant the investment.” This case study demonstrates the role a learner response system can play in the classroom training of a global e-commerce organisation. Using an experimental control group design, this case study focused on learner achievement and learner experience with and without the introduction of a learner response system. Learner achievement was captured using pre- and post-tests, while the experience piece was captured through post-training surveys. Results for both sections were then further investigated using a focus group after the training. The findings from the case study allowed the organisation to conclude that a learner response system is a valuable learning instrument to aid and enhance the transfer of learning for their employees.
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This case study was designed to investigate the role a learner response system (also referred to as clickers) can play in the training classroom of an organisation. The study focused on learner achievement and learner experience, which was captured using four classroom training sessions on a module about organisational change. Learner achievement data were collected using pre- and post-tests, while the experience information was gathered through post-training surveys. Results for both sections were then investigated further using a focus group that met two weeks after the final training class.

Company Profile

The case study that will be discussed in this chapter will focus on a global e-commerce company; a company who remains one of the main leaders in the field of e-commerce. The company offers a platform for many people to browse, buy, and sell wide ranging items in a variety of selling formats. As a multinational corporation it hosts a platform for 162 million active buyers to find the items they want and need. The company makes its profits from sellers paying to list items on the site as well as a percentage of what is made from a successful sale. The company operates in a fast paced environment requiring regular training for over 10,000 employees who operate in a direct, alternative, or outsourced employment capacity across the globe. For these reasons training needs to be very effective to ensure a high transfer of learning for all learning participants in the various learning initiatives attended.

Learning Organisation Profile

The company’s learning team is responsible for all learning, training, and development needs of employees. The various types of training can range from short-term product training to long term on-boarding training for those who have just entered the company. The learning team structure is aligned to the ADDIE model, which has roles and responsibilities divided between analysis of training needs, design and development of material, and evaluation phases. These sections all flow into a seamless end-to-end process:

Figure 1.

ADDIE model

(She, Wu, Wang, & Chen, 2009)

Each area can be defined with the following roles and responsibilities:

  • Analysis: Identifies performance gaps and underlying causes.

  • Design: Draws up a training design based on target audience, prerequisite knowledge, and skills.

  • Develop: Explore multiple solutions (including training), develop, and refine intervention.

  • Implementation: Conduct the training interventions that focus on the work environment as well as the individual learner.

  • Evaluation: Evaluate appropriate levels of learning. Success is measured by progress in closing the performance gap. (Chevalier, 2011)

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