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One of the biggest challenges we face in designing effective eLearning courses is keeping the learner engaged and interested in the lesson. It’s a fact that people learn best when a topic captures their imagination and motivates them to become an active participant. This type of engagement is possible when the eLearning presented is realistic, interactive and allows the learner to make choices and solve problems within the lesson.
One way to accomplish all of these goals is through the use of branching scenarios in eLearning. Using branching scenarios gives learners the ability to apply the information you’ve presented, and to see the results of their decisions played out immediately. This immediate feedback is important in reinforcing the material, as well as in motivating the participant to continue learning.
Branching scenarios are essentially stories that allow a learner to select a course of action and see how it plays out virtually. When designed effectively, branching scenarios teach the underlying principles of a lesson, giving learners the ability to extrapolate the concepts and apply them to any number of similar situations. This type of situational role-playing is both highly engaging and extremely effective in promoting learner retention.
Branching scenarios are more than just a series of scenes linked together. To be successful, branching scenarios must build upon previous decisions and relate the consequences to a particular choice or action. In this way, a learner can see the impact of even a poor decision, without the risk associated with doing it in real life.
Designing branching scenarios in eLearning courses has a number of benefits for learners. Immersing a learner into a scenario allows him or her to make decisions and assume responsibility for the choices they make. This emotional investment in the learning process ultimately has a far greater impact than traditional, more passive types of eLearning. Some specific benefits to branching scenarios within eLearning include:
The use of branching scenarios as a way to improve the effectiveness of eLearning is growing in popularity. When applied effectively, this type of interactive lesson delivery can increase engagement, improve knowledge retention, and build valuable decision-making skills. By encouraging learners to be active participants in their education and skill building, scenario-based eLearning can have a positive impact on any learning program.
To learn more about what this type of training can do for your organization, contact the experts here at Designing Digitally, Inc. We specialize in designing eLearning courses that incorporate a variety of branching scenario techniques and styles. Let us know how we can help you and your workforce.