Storyboards are an essential element in designing your online course. They'll improve efficiency, save a lot of work/re-work down the road, and can also help communicate your ideas to stakeholders. Here 5 tips and best practices to get the most out of your storyboards! 1. Keep your goals in mind Why are you creating this eLearning course? Be clear on the purpose and content of your course, right from the start. If the course is truly your course, it should be much easier - you'll know the exact direction to head. However, if you're creating the course for a client, be sure everyone is on the same page (stakeholders, SMEs, course developers, etc.) I often find that what I think the course should be is drastically different from my client's expectations. 2. Don’t forget your audience Assuming you know your audience is a mistake. Research is key. This can come in the form of focus groups, surveys, or interviews to find out everything about the audience you're trying to … [Read more...] about 5 Tips For Effective ELearning Storyboards
Consider this situation: You hire an architect to build you your dream house. After discussing the broad strokes of your vision for the home, he/she shows up onsite the next day and starts building! I’m pretty sure you (the paying client) won’t be impressed at all! You were likely looking for a blueprint or some type of vision document before shovels hit the ground. It’s the same with instructional design (ID) projects. You need to provide clients with a vision artifact first, before commencing detailed course design and development. And that document is typically the Storyboard. Storyboarding 101 In his book “The eLearning Designer’s Handbook”, noted eLearning designer Tim Slade, describes Storyboards as “…a document that outlines the learning content, slide-by-slide or screen-by-screen.” According to Slade, Storyboards are great for: enabling SMEs and stakeholders to preview the content and flow of a course providing opportunities for early inputs for design changes The … [Read more...] about 4 Steps to Creating ELearning Storyboards: Step-by-step guide to effective storyboarding!
Whether you are producing online How-To guides for corporate clients, DIY Instructional content as a freelancer, eLearning courses for adult learners or other digital educational media for your employer, your objective is likely the same: To successfully engage, educate, and enlighten your audience. And to do that, you need to produce equally engaging and informative content. If learners don’t find your content appealing, they’ll likely tune-out within the first few minutes of the course. So, how does one create successful digital learning content and eLearning courses? Read on to discover a 10-point blueprint to doing it right. The 10-Step Blueprint In digital learning terms, success is about learners consuming your content, and whether they (eLearners and digital content consumers) accomplish their learning objectives as a result. If you meet those two criteria with your content, your audience, clients and other stakeholders will deem your courses a success. Use the following … [Read more...] about The 10-step Blueprint for Creating Successful Digital Learning Content
Instructional design produces the best results when we follow a methodical process. Unfortunately, whether you are a fan of Merrill’s Principles or Bloom’s Taxonomy, or whether you are an ADDIE devotee – there’s so much involved that it’s hard to keep track of what’s what. Having a set of handy cheat sheets, to gently remind you what needs to be done, can be an excellent way to ensure you dot all the I’s and cross all the T’s. Not only will cheat sheets help make your ID process as thorough and complete as possible, but it will also help you save time. Here are 6 cheat sheets that instructional designers will find useful. Cheat Sheet for Merrill's Principles of Instruction Merrill’s design theory, First Principles of Instruction, is a concise ID model that many novice and expert instructional designers might find extremely helpful. Here’s the Coles Notes version of what it entails: Use real-life problems in your instructional events Activate … [Read more...] about The ultimate instructional design models cheat sheet
In the last post, we talked about storyboarding. In this post I want to get into prototyping. While storyboards are very useful for visualizing a course, they only work well for linear courses. Because many eLearning lessons are non-linear, storyboards can be rather confusing to both SMEs and programmers. Sometimes it is excessively difficult or even impossible to describe all the interactions, non-linear navigation, scenarios, simulations, and other media-rich content in words. Storyboards do not always allow to fully capture all the nuances of the design, especially when it comes to games and interactions. Therefore, many instructional designers turn to rapid prototyping to develop an interactive model of their eLearning course. In addition to all the information found in storyboards, prototypes contain the overall course layout including buttons and navigation. There are three prototyping styles: Nonfunctional prototypes – Do not have any functional elements but still have … [Read more...] about 3 Effective Ways To Prototype ELearning Courses