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Gamers have been using simulations for years. But did you know that e-learning simulations can offer several benefits to organizations, too? They provide learners a risk-free environment to explore and learn problem-solving techniques. And, learning by discovering is the best way to retain information. Employees are provided a real-world environment and are motivated to learn.
Check out these five design tips to create meaningful and engaging e-learning simulations for the modern learner.
The most crucial step is to create a plan – outline, storyboards, timeline, and so on. For that, it is imperative to draft out the learning objectives. Simulations may be entertaining but the purpose is to help learners reach a performance goal. Identifying and focusing on learning objectives is the starting point of the plan. Ask these questions: What are the skills that the learners need to build? What is the performance gap that needs to be addressed?
These goals need to be clarified to the learners at the beginning, so that they know what to expect from the simulation. Once the basic structure is set up, fill in the details like branches, responses, media components, and others. A sturdy plan of action will help determine the tools and resources required to build the simulation. You can keep the plan agile, but the basic structure should not change.
Learners should be able to empathize and relate to the content of the simulation. They have to connect with the characters and the plot. Thus, it is extremely important to study the audience before creating the e-learning simulation. Designers need to think from the perspective of the learner. They need to learn about the obstacles the learners face and the behaviors that need to be improved. This information helps in developing the characters with whom the learners will be able to connect.
The audio, video, and images should also be realistic. Devote as much time required to develop a script that mirrors real-world scenario. The characters and their dialogues should be believable. Pictures from the actual workplace work best in the simulation. That way, the employees connect to the simulation in the most realistic way possible.
Evaluation at the end is a must for all e-learning simulations. It is important to include assessment questions for the learner to track their progress. It can be a short quiz at the end of the simulation. Or, it can be a series of branching paths with varied outcomes. An assessment is successful so long as it gauges the understanding of the learner.
After launching the course or a prototype, study the learners’ assessment scores. A large percentage of low scores is an indication you need to rethink the content and strategy. Something is not working. Provide constructive feedback, to every learner, on how he can enhance his performance. Avoid getting personal and focus only on their professional skills. A good way to make the learners aware of their own limitations is to ask them to grade themselves.
Designing Digitally, Inc., has qualified designers who can create awesome e-learning simulations for your training needs.
Get in touch with your learning requirement and see us create magic!