This client needed a course on the topic of consequence scenarios. I knew this would be a good instructional design challenge. How could I keep the course focused and interesting without having learners feel like they’re being tormented by having to read the company bylaws, word for word? I went to work.
Here are some of the features I included in the course design, along with my reasons for including them and the benefits they provide.
At the top of the course, I introduce our protagonist. The best thing about this course is that there is a series of clues that lead you on a journey to gather information that will help you at the end with the quiz.
This creates a bit of a game out of what would otherwise be some challenging content. By making the learner take an active role in data gathering there participation can be reflected in the results of their grade.
Activity-based learning. I developed a few activities into this course such as drag and drop, tabbed information, and forming sentences with missing words.
Benefit: These activities kept them entertained, but also have the added benefit of testing the learner’s knowledge throughout the course. It meant that by the time they get to the test that they had already gained a lot of tested knowledge so it meant I was able to challenge them a bit harder for the end quiz which was suitable considering the subject matter.
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Not many learners are fans of having statistics rattled off at them, but since they need to at least be exposed to them (as opposed to memorize them) I made them graphically pleasing and relevant.
Benefit: Presenting these facts in a visual style consistent with the rest of the course makes them more relevant to learners. By using images of the same people who are getting harassed in our scenarios, it ties it together nicely.
Filming real people and photographing them for this project was challenging to produce as working with actors involves a bit more effort and time but the rewards make it worth it. One of the other great things was the amount of diversity in the course. I managed to find actors that were from a wide variety of cultural backgrounds.
Benefit: Filming people in real life meant that it was very easy to see what peoples true feelings were. The fact that this offered an opportunity to tick a lot of boxes in the way of diversity was a bonus.
Why Does This Course Work?
Humor: I couldn’t stand the idea of creating a deadly-earnest course and one of the benefits of having real actors was the ability to be able to accurately convey their emotions and their smiles put a smile on the learner’s faces.
Photography and Filming: I was able to challenge my self with filming in a professional environment. One of my first projects using a camera while in a work environment. I was pleased with the results.
Results: The client and we as a team went on to produce a whole range of similar courses to this one.
What Was My Role?
Course Developer: I developed the assets in Photoshop and Illustrator. These were then published by the developers into the course.
Visual Designer: In order to film the characters in this course I had to get hold of a selection of people who were willing enough to be photographed in various positioned for the course. This was quite challenging considering budget constrained but it worked well and using the camera and lighting equipment was a great learning opportunity for me and I was able to put my skills into action.