Building Scenario–Based e-Learning Courses

Creating content and putting it into an e-learning format isn’t difficult to do.

Creating content and putting it into an e-learning format that is effective and gives value to the learner is difficult to do.

…however there are many different options available for making it happen.

One of the best approaches to take is one that is used in training situations around the world; create a scenario that people can relate to and then use this as the basis for the learning.

Think about early maths lessons at school and how, rather than being asked what 4 + 3 was, you were asked how many people were on the bus if you started with 4 and 3 got on at the next stop. Granted, this is a very basic example and certainly won’t be used for executive training or for new employees, but it stands as a good example of how scenario-based learning can work.

When it comes to scenario-based learning, it is as simple as taking something real life that people can relate to, and then building the purpose of your course into it.

Here’s a plan that will help you create your own scenario-based e-learning courses.

What’s Your Scenario?

The first thing to do is think about what your scenario is going to be.

It might be people on the bus, it might be someone looking to redecorate their home, it might be a boss looking to assign tasks, or something completely different. What you need to consider is the different ways your scenario can play out. What are the different possibilities and how does each one influence how the scenario develops?

Try to keep it as real as possible. If you start off in a real life scenario but then morph into something more akin to The Lord of the Rings, you run the risk of losing your learner very quickly.

Have a Challenge

You should use your scenario to challenge your learners to discover information, not just to create a colourful means of communicating and giving them information without any effort.

Ideally, there will a problem-solving or logic element built into your course at this point, but challenges of any type increase engagement massively and keep people interested. Just be sure they’re of an appropriate difficulty.

Use Different Styles

Using scenario-based learning gives you the opportunity to play around with how you educate learners as well as understand what they know, ideal for yourself or for clients if you’re developing e-learning modules on their behalf.

The typical approach to take would be to present information and then revisit it later in the form of multiple-choice questions. However, with scenario-based learning you have the option of putting someone in a position and then limiting the knowledge they have. Then they might react based on the scenario as much as what they know, but how they continue to interact with the world you have created will help you to develop your platform further. What elements of your scenario-based e-learning module work well, and which ones could be improved?

Create a Character

When developing scenario-based courses, make sure you have a character that someone can relate to and interact with. Perhaps have them “speak” to the learner about different elements of your course. Allow users to take pictures of themselves on their webcam or mobile camera and have their heads superimposed onto their in-game character for added personalisation.

These four ideas are a great starting point for scenario-based learning. Keep them in mind when developing your e-learning platforms and you’ll have extra options for creating a variety of e-learning content.

I really hope this post will help save you some e-learning development time. If you’re looking for a tool to help you create e-learning quickly and easily then Elucidat could help.