8 Myths About Training Reinforcement

We often hear a lot of misconceptions around training reinforcement.

Training reinforcement is the continuous reinforcement of course material post-training. Reinforcement programs are crafted using your learning objectives and expected behavior outcomes to increase knowledge retention and change behavior.

Here are 8 myths about training reinforcement:

1. Reinforcement is the same as the Forgetting Curve.

Reinforcement isn't the same as the Forgetting Curve, but rather, in response to it. Although reinforcement is based on principles discovered by Ebbinghaus, reinforcement is more advanced.

2. Reinforcement takes a lot of my learners’ time.

A well-crafted reinforcement program is presented as bite-sized microlearning activities that take only a few minutes to complete each day or week. Training reinforcement messages should be quick, meaningful, and based on your expected outcomes.

3. Reinforcement should start a few weeks or months after training.

The best time to start your reinforcement program depends on your reinforcement objectives. Some training programs benefit from reinforcement before, during, or after training.  

When creating a post-training reinforcement program, we suggest your learners start the reinforcement program immediately after training ends. After the first few days, retention rates drop around 40%. After 30 days, retention rates are less than 20%.

A strong post-training reinforcement program will continue the process of learning well after training has ended.

4. eLearning is more effective because it’s focused or blended.

eLearning is indeed a good learning method, but it’s not enough to drive lasting behavior change on it's own. Reinforcement is more than just remembering new material, an effective program will drive lasting organizational change.

5. Reinforcement is focused on learning.

Reinforcement includes learning. However, the main focus is on the five common learning gaps to help learners apply their new skills.

6. Reinforcement messages should only be sent once a month.

Reinforcement relies on continuous learning to make improvements in knowledge retention and behavior change. Instead of sending one message each month, send them daily, weekly, or multiple times per week and limit the length of each message to no more than three minutes.

7. The morning is the best time to send reinforcement messages.

Although the morning is a good time to send some reinforcement messages, the optimal timing depends on the type of content. Knowledge questions should usually be sent during busier times of the day, while reflection questions should be sent during slower times.

8. Reinforcement doesn't increase engagement.

A good reinforcement program will deliver content at the right time to support behavior change. Use scores, live leaderboards, participant status, and reinforcement progress to help increase engagement.

For information on training reinforcement, download our eBook, The Science Behind Mindmarker.

This post was originally published on September 5, 2017.

Ready to see
Mindmarker in action?

Learn how Mindmarker can make corporate microlearning more
engaging, more relevant, and less disruptive for employees.
Get Started
Cookie Policy