Adaptive Training

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Adaptive training refers to training that customizes or adapts the content presented to trainees based on their learning style, ability, personality, or performance. These adaptations include the variety, difficulty, and sequencing of content as well as practice problems. In adaptive training, instruction changes based on trainees’ scores on tests or quizzes completed either before training or at various times as they experience training. This assessment results in adaptations of the content to best help the trainee learn. Although trainers strive to meet the individual needs of learners, this can be difficult using face-to-face training methods.

Online training

makes it easier to use ongoing assessments to identify the most effective instructional pathways for learners. The major challenge in developing adaptive training is to ensure that the different content customizations match learners’ needs and help them attain the learning objectives.

For example, LearnSmart is an interactive and adaptive study tool that is used in some college courses. Based on their performance on quizzes throughout the course, students are directed to practice exercises and sections of



they need to read. LearnSmart is designed to help students better use their study time, as well as improve their retention, their recall of the material, and their grades. Aristocrat Technologies, a gaming machine manufacturer, has replaced

online learning courses

for its repair technicians with adaptable microlearning modules. The modules are sent to their phones so they can review the content between their jobs and answer short quiz questions. The system uses their quiz scores to learn what they know (and don’t know) and uses this information to choose what content to send them next. Technicians have to master each module twice before they can move on to another module. Technicians’ success rates on the modules are tracked, which allows the learning manager to identify where they might need more additional training. For example, the learning manager saw that the majority of technicians were having difficulty correctly answering a set of questions related to meter-reading, which is a skill they are expected to learn on the job. The meter-reading scores were found to be related to error rates on the job, suggesting a knowledge gap that needed to be corrected. As a result, the learning manager added a meter-reading course for all new hires.

Adaptive training also includes intelligent tutoring systems that use artificial intelligence. Air Methods, a company that provides medical transportation using helicopters, implemented a cloud-based learning system that uses artificial intelligence to adapt to each helicopter pilot’s topic knowledge based on how they perform on quizzes and games. If the pilot is not scoring well on the quizzes for a particular training module, the system will present information in a new way and retest the pilot before he or she can move to the next training module. The use of adaptive training has saved training costs by eliminating 50 percent of the company’s in-person instructor-led training courses and reducing the training time required by new pilots as part of the onboarding process.

Based on the above information, recall a recent training class that you have successfully completed. (Or, if your recent training class was quite awhile back, select a favorite one that you remember.)

Considering this training event, did it use an adaptive training methodology? If so, what were the positive aspects of the training? Why? What were the negative aspects of the training? Why?

If this training event did not use an adaptive training methodology, how could the training session have been improved through the use of such a method? Why? What would be your recommendations? Why? Consider as a part of your response completing the following sentence. “If this training course was mine to design, present and facilitate, I would…”

Provide your initial response in an audio format or a video format (Make use of Kaltura). Then, your remaining two responses may be text-based. Remember, your remaining responses must be on different days in order to earn

full credit


Adapted from: Noe, R. A. (2020). Employee Training & Development. [VitalSource Bookshelf]. Retrieved from

https://bookshelf.vitalsource.com/#/books/9781260140279/ (Links to an external site.)

pp. 373-374.


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