In today’s Course Building tip, Tara highlights the importance of the learning environment when creating an effective online learning experience and how to set up your learners to take action faster and easier with productive practice by considering and building in surroundings that are appropriate and relevant to your topic or expertise.

About the Host:

My name is Tara Bryan. I help business owners break into the next level of success by packaging their expertise into an online course experience. It’s my passion to help to find the fastest path to results to create a greater impact and income for you and your tribe.


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This group is 100% focused on support, knowledge and example sharing, and building a community of online course builders who are passionate about building awesome learning experiences.

In this community, we are passionate about building learning experiences that produce results for our learners. We do that by building engaging, motivating, gamified, and learner-centered courses. We come up with ideas and strategies to ensure that our learners can thrive and succeed in our product.

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Tara Bryan:

Hey everybody, it's Tara Bryan, and you are listening to the Course Building Secrets podcast. Whether you're a coach or a CEO, the success of your team and clients is based on your ability to deliver a consistent experience and guide them on the fastest path to results. This podcast will give you practical real life tips that you can use today to build your online experiences that get results and create raving fans. Why? So you can monetize your expertise and serve more people without adding more time or team to your business. If you're looking to uncover your million dollar framework, package it and use it to scale you're in the right place. Let's dive in.

Tara Bryan:

Hello, course builders, hey, so I have been focused a little bit more on mindset, lately versus tactics just because I think that's sort of where my journey has brought me up until this point. So I want to get super tactical with you today and give you some solid course building tips, as you're thinking about building your courses, your signature programs, whatever it is that you're trying to package, so you can help people get results. So let me just talk a little bit about context in learning, and how important it is. So the very first thing that you should be doing, as you're planning out how you're going to teach your thing is to really think about in what situations do people actually apply what you're teaching. So let me give you a couple of different examples. Because this is actually important, as you're thinking about this. So often, in the entrepreneurial space, or sort of packaged online expertise space, you see a lot of just video, you see a lot of people just talking on video, sharing information, sharing knowledge, talking about their thing. So the challenge with that is that it's really then focused more on you as the expert, and on the information that you're hoping to teach. That the problem though, is, it's not actually where you should start.

Tara Bryan:

And let me explain because, unfortunately, our education system is still in that industrial ages, right, which means that it's a lot about information, it's a lot about just, you know, sort of the teacher in the front of the room giving information and then students taking notes, and then hopefully, in some way, shape or form applying it in the future. And we know honestly, that that doesn't work. So what we need to do is we need to think about context, we need to think about that learner first and foremost, in whatever it is that we're trying to teach. So we say okay, here's the topic that we're an expert in, right, whatever topic it is, say it's in, I don't know, you teach people how to dance. Right? And so you're okay. Well, here is here's the, you know, the information about dancing, here's how you do your steps, here's how you, you know, do all these things, right? So if you are showing them how to dance by just you being on the screen with your, you know, a talking head on the screen, that's not actually going to put them in a place of experiencing the dancing or getting the emotions or the feelings that come into dancing. So they get excited about it like you do, or actually be able to learn about dancing, right? So the very first thing you would do is okay, well if I'm going to teach somebody how to dance, I probably need to have my feet be on video so they can see the dance steps. Great. That's the very first thing. However, what if you're teaching them a specific type of dance, you would probably want to put them in, you know, have a background of that environment, right? So say I'm teaching Irish dance. I'm not going to probably have either a blank background or a background of a Hawaiian scene or something like that. Right? I'm going to have a background with Ireland in the background because that contextually is the right background that goes with what I'm teaching. I'm also probably going to have, you know the right shoes on I'm probably going to have maybe a costume or an outfit on. I'm going to have, you know, be on a platform or be on some Some type of stage or if it's river dance, I'm gonna have that background going on, right? So, so contextually, you want to put that learner in a position where they not only are listening to what you're saying, but they're seeing the connection, they're experiencing that connection, they're seeing some, they're having an experience around it, right? So.

Tara Bryan:

So they may, if it's online, they may not be able to touch it, they may not be able to feel it, they may not be able to, to have that sensory experience of being there. But you can create that environment on the computer. So they feel like they're in that scenario, they feel like they're in that situation. And so they see what they're wearing, they see the shoes, they see the background, they at that moment that you're teaching them, they can feel that they're in the room with you. One of the most powerful things that we do as we're creating online learning is to set the stage for an experience set the stage for what you're teaching. Same thing, if I'm, you know, teaching something about skiing, I'm not going to be sitting on the beach, teaching about skiing, right? Like that's a disconnect, it doesn't make sense. And it doesn't connect the learner to what you're teaching you, you know, should, your background should be the slopes, your background should be, you know, with skis, and winter clothes, and goggles and helmets and all that kind of stuff, because it's congruent to matches what it is you're teaching. So even if you're teaching something that's not quite as tactical, or obvious in terms of visual, how do you put that learner in the right context. So not only are they hearing, but they're seeing and experiencing what it's like, in, in that learning process. So you know, we do a lot of virtual reality work, we do a lot of kind of that, that 360 view of putting people in an environment and having them practice, think about the airline pilot, for example, right, like an airline pilot, you don't just say, okay, here, you're gonna go into this lecture, and you're gonna learn about all the parts of the aeroplane and then you're gonna learn how you know all the parts of how to fly it and the instrument and all of that, okay, now go ahead, and you know, get on a commercial plane and fly 400 people across the ocean, right, you're not going to do that, you're going to put them into a simulated environment where they're practicing in, in something that feels like they're in an airplane, right, they're in a flight simulator, you can think about that in the same exact way, as you're creating your your training program, your students or program, whatever it is. So even if you're teaching somebody how to sell better, put them into a sales environment, have them, you know, virtually practice in a sales environment, have them ask questions, have them think through how to, you know, go through a script how to, you know, react to different things that are going on with a customer on the screen, put them in a sales situation? Are they in a car? Are they in an office? Are they in their home office on the phone? Are they in zoom? What are they doing, put them contextually in the right place. So they're having that true experience. So once they're actually doing it in person, like the airline pilot, once they actually have to fly the plane, they've already gone through the experience in a way that has allowed them to have that full experience around what they're doing.

Tara Bryan:

So if you're teaching somebody coaching or teaching somebody sales, you're teaching somebody how to do something in their work, or, you know, how to how to, to do whatever it is that you're teaching them. How do you put them in that environment first, and then you layer on your expertise, right your if you need to be on camera, then you're layering in your, your video on top of what you're, you're giving them or maybe it's just your voice or the you know, you're teaching and then you're giving them questions or scenarios to answer. So they're practicing in a safe environment they're practicing online. So the next time that you are looking at creating your course creating your webinar or creating anything that you're teaching people really think about what does the learner need in order to be successful? And contextually what do they what kind of environment do they need to be immersed in, in order to practice so they can be? They can get the results because here's the deal, right?

Tara Bryan:

Like people don't learn passively or people can't apply something by learning passively. Your face on screen is great, but it's not absolutely necessary. What's necessary is that you're able to put them in action, you're able to allow them to practice in a safe environment, AKA your training. So then they can apply it. Or if you're a business owner who's trying to get results for your people, put them through the program in a way that allows them to do the thing while you're teaching it. How do they do that? Contextually through what you're offering? So my goal for you today is really think through maybe it's looking at your program that you already have? And how can you add some some, you know, sort of scenarios or contextual examples for them around what you're teaching? How do you look at the videos you've created and worry less about? The you being on camera and more about how that what that person needs visually in terms of, you know, in terms of learning? Do they need to be in a specific environment? Do they need tools? Do they need to practice? Do they need to make decisions, put them in that scenario, where they're able to actually think through what you want them to do? is much more effective than them watching you on video, right? It's the same as if you if you have somebody coming into the classroom, or you're working with them one on one, you can talk to them all day long, but until they're actually in action, trying something practicing, and and you know, applying what you're teaching, it's it's actually meaningless, right. So think about that, from your learner's perspective, is what environment can you put them in? And then honestly, you can just Google it environment like, you know, government office, I don't know. And so Google that, go to images under Google, you know, how it says video, articles, images, go to images, and look at all the backgrounds that are available for free that you can use. And that background puts them in to kind of that immersive environment. Again, think flight simulator, it doesn't have to be expensive, you don't need to do VR, you don't need to do anything super complicated. But putting them in the environment helps them be able to learn.

Tara Bryan:

So alright, I want some examples of this. If you are able to actually take action and do this, I would love to see some examples. My information is in the show notes, throw it my direction, throw it on the course lunch, lunch or group on Facebook. But I would love to see you apply this in your program that you already have. Or if you're trying to build one. Don't stress over being on camera. open PowerPoint ponents can some can some conceptual backgrounds, and start from there. Alright, there we go. There is your coarsely secret for the day.