Example of a realistic activity: Set up the laptop

I preach a lot about making activities realistic and showing the results of the learner’s choice. Here’s an activity that shows how you could apply those principles. Read more.

How to create a memorable mini-scenario

Often we’re told, “Put this information into a course.” But what happens if we put the information into a job aid instead, and then design mini-scenarios that help learners use the job aid? Here’s an example. Read more

Do they just know it, or can they USE it?

It’s easy to write activities that test whether learners know something. How can we make learners use their knowledge as well? Let’s compare two types of activities. Read more

Sample branching scenario + cool tool

Branching scenarios can be a pain to design. Happily, you can use a simple tool called Twine to easily draft the scenario and produce it. In this post we’ll look at a scenario that I wrote to demonstrate Twine’s basic features and to make a point about teaching through stories. Read more

Elearning example: Branching scenario

You’re a US Army sergeant in Afghanistan. Can you help a young lieutenant make a good impression on a Pashtun leader? That’s the challenge behind “Connect with Haji Kamal,” a thought-provoking branching scenario. Try the activity and learn how it was designed. Read more

Prove it with a prototype

Are you dreaming of an immersive simulation while your team members plan yet another Jeopardy game? If you want stakeholders to expand their horizons, a working prototype is your best friend. A working prototype has simple placeholder graphics, but the clicking and dragging work as they will in the final activity. Build a quick-and-dirty version […]

How to steer your client away from an information dump

Learn more about the action mapping process described in this interaction from this quick overview. How I designed and built the scenario Some people avoid creating branching scenarios because they seem too complex. In case it’s helpful, here’s the approach I took.

How to recognize elearning bloat

When stakeholders think every detail is equally important, the result can be bloated elearning. This hilarious YouTube video shows what I mean. To fight the enemy, we have to see it My favorite writing teacher used parody to help us recognize and remove bloat. Here’s a small example. The following statement is sort of Apple […]

Why you really want to be short

The elearning samples page lists more than 35 inspiring interactions. Why did so few corporate courses make the final list? One reason: The people who designed the interactions knew the following 3 Secrets of Shortness. 1. Forget the intro Typical course: “Welcome to the Widget Functionality course! Widgets are undoubtedly an important part of our […]

Makeover: Teen body parts at risk!

Here’s the first in a sporadic series of makeovers. I’ll grab some elearning that might need perking up, add some perk, and put it here for you to critique. The first sample comes from the US government, which published Teen Worker Safety in Restaurants. There’s a lot to the site, but I’ll focus on just […]