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Less classroom training time doesn't have to be frightening

Teaching end users how to use your EHR—whether during an implementation, onboarding new staff, or after significant optimization efforts—can require significant training time. In-classroom training can be costly, yet most organizations still rely on this method.

I’m here to tell you this Halloween season that less time in the classroom doesn’t have to be as scary as the archaic carnivore you see in the image at the top of this page.

While organizations are moving in the right direction with the use of e-learning tools or exercise-based training, there are still opportunities for many healthcare organizations to leverage new trends, such as microlearning and ATAWAD (anytime, anywhere, any device).

Creating videos, e-learning courses, and interactive games can initially seem daunting. Concerns about loss of control within your training team as you experiment with allowing learners to drive their own learning can surface. But tracking what end users are learning when they are not sitting in front of you is easier than you think.

Just because the learner is in control of what they’re studying—and when—as they are microlearning doesn’t mean it can’t be tracked. Creating a lesson within the LMS can support completion reporting and training progress.

Embracing microlearning also sheds light on other surface-level benefits:

  • It removes the need to take the end user away from their job for significant amounts of time
  • It removes the need to schedule resources, such as training rooms and projectors
  • It removes loss of productivity stemming from travel time between training sites for trainers and trainees.

If the idea of micro-learning and training outside of a classroom continues to sound frightening, try starting small and building upon these ideas:


The next time you announce a system or workflow change, create a 1-to-2-minute video rather than sending an email and a tip sheet. According to, 80% of individuals would prefer to watch a video over reading. Microlearning allows you to capture end user attention and reduce the risk of important information being missed due to email overload.

Content Audit

Review your current new hire training and find areas where you can provide content outside of the classroom. Many organizations are requiring e-learning courses to be completed before the learner attends formal training.


What more could be done, aside from e-learning? A simulation of the workflow via gamification could be a great place to start. Gamification uses consistent positive feedback to increase motivation and breaks down complex tasks into simply steps that can be more easily learned.


Virtually any time spent training outside of the classroom is a win-win-win. The end user wins because they have control of their time and their learning. The organization wins because they don’t lose productivity by taking people away from their work. Most importantly, the patients win because the people caring for them are more readily prepared and available.   

Less time spent training in a traditional classroom setting does not have to be frightening. So do what the rest of your healthcare IT colleagues are doing tonight, and take the time saved and turn it into double the amount of trick-or-treat time with your kids.

RELATED: Read our West Virginia University Medicine case study

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