How to get everyone to write like Ernest Hemingway

Text in elearning should be concise and lively. But what does “concise and lively” actually look like? Use a simple readability formula to make sure you’re writing in the best style. Learn more.

Scenarios: the good, the bad, and the preachy

Decision-making scenarios work best when they require realistic decisions and avoid preaching. This post turns a typical fact-regurgitation into a more realistic scenario that helps learners practice making decisions in nuanced situations. Read more

Less text, more learning

Do stakeholders want to add text to your materials? Here’s one study you can use to show how wordiness can hurt learning. The study compared three lessons about the same weather process. All lessons used the same illustrations but varied in the number of words. The lesson with the fewest words resulted in the most […]

Why you do not want to sound like a robot

“We shouldn’t use contractions because…” Let’s debunk all that.

How to recognize elearning bloat

A fun video shows what happens when stakeholders think every detail is important.

5 ways to make linear navigation more interesting

This slideshow is an attempt to help people make the best of a limiting design. Regular readers know that I’m no fan of the Next button. (Are you new here? Try Why you really want to be short or Visual menus: Structure with style). Thanks to Erik Wallen–his comment on Is a course really the […]

Makeover: Turn objectives into motivators

“No one reads the objectives.” If that’s true, maybe it’s because we tend to write objectives in TrainerSpeak. In this makeover we’ll turn some conventional objectives into goals that learners care about. Let’s say that the following objectives appear at the beginning of a course for customer service representatives (CSRs). You’re a CSR. How do […]

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 […]

Can you answer these 6 questions about multiple-choice questions?

1. I opened a course on a topic I know nothing about, clicked through without reading anything, and took the assessment. I passed! What does that suggest? I am a genius! The assessment was too easy. Maybe the course was too easy, too. Maybe the course didn’t even need to be written. b, c, and […]

Scenario design online course

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