Hyper-Targeted Learning is Letting Busy Adults Pursue Continued Education

Hyper-Targeted Learning is Letting Busy Adults Pursue Continued Education
Arts & Culture

15-minute courses and topical email series are giving on-the-go students the educational malleability their busy lives demand

  • 3 june 2015

An hour-long train commute to and from the office offers a large window of time to enjoy at leisure or to extend your academic prowess. Whether it be furthering career-oriented skills or learning techniques to be better equipped for the experiences of everyday life, smaller format classes and online workshops make it easier to turn commuter hours into valuable learning opportunities.

In one month, one can excel from beginner to intermediate in a foreign language or rack up hundreds of read novel pages. Given our constant desire to multi-task, it might be a challenge to focus on furthering passions and skills during these spare times when attention is often channeled toward work or home life. Amidst busy work schedules, relationships and hobbies, continued education remains just a far-off dream for many adults. But the growing offering of microlearning opportunities is helping them move into

“The next big thing in education might be a microlearning approach,” said Artem Zavyalov, Co-Founder and CEO of Highbrow. “People will be able to learn something new in mere minutes wherever they are: at work, on the commute home, or in line at the grocery store.”

As part of our Future of Connected Life Report, we’re calling this rising trend of short and engaging educational lessons Hyper-Targeted Learning. This trend enables access to interesting and topical content created specifically for incremental bursts of time. These programs—such as 15 minutes of “cliff-note” reading or micro-courses available via mobile —are delivered when participants’ time and attention are at their peak availability.

Below we detail bite-sized services that democratize learning for adults by allowing them to choose exactly what and where they access it. 

little green dot

The Little Green Dot email course is for people who want to make subtle changes in their morning routine so as to power better lifestyle habits. The site is launching a free 28-day subscription that teaches how to become a morning person through a blend of tips, tools and how-tos.

Each week the course will focus on a relevant topic, such as routines for clarity, recipes for the body and healthy exercise regimes. By offering various steps that can be understood and processed as quickly as opening and reading an email, the program makes it easy for people to access lessons in a format that aligns with their typical content consumption.

Coursmos is an online platform that lets students sift through micro-learning courses that are designed specifically for people seeking knowledge on-the-go. Students can access lessons in a variety of topics across multiple devices. This idea of ‘everywhere learning’ acts as a convenient alternative for people who don’t have multiple hours in the day, or even week, to dedicate to a lesson plan.

Coursmos course options include a blend of topics such as cooking, music, technology, business and startups. By providing broad access to substantive lessons in any field, Coursmos complements more traditional formats of education.


Our final example, Highbrow is an email-based learning service that offers digestible pieces of content for the time-crunched student. The program delivers five-minute reads to the person’s emails every morning based on the topic of their choice. To maximize learning and attention, Highbrow only allows participants to sign up for one topic at a time. As they finish each 10-day course (topics span across philosophy, art history, architecture, productivity and more), they are able to move on to the next subject. This model helps users form a daily habit around the learning process while also enhancing their knowledge.

High Brow

With the advent of educational programs delivered via mobile or email, participants in these courses can garner real-world knowledge in formats that align with their typical content viewing habits. These services fill in the gaps of institutions by offering skillsets to employees who want to develop or improve education that supports internal growth and innovation.

Future of Connected Life

PSFK Labs is proud to release The Future of Connected Life: Live, Work, Play Better. Download the full report here, view our trend summary on Slideshare and be sure to check back daily for new articles about the latest trends affecting individuals as they strive to live, work, and play better in their connected lives. 

+continued education
+email courses
+fitness / sport
+hyper-targeted learning
+The Little Green Dot

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