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Using Storytelling – The Secret to Designing Engaging eLearning

Written By Sharekha Zainab

Storytelling – The Secret to Designing Engaging eLearning

“Great design is storytelling at its finest; it is insightful, sincere and evokes emotion and change. Design is at the center of the user experience and it is the designer’s responsibility to make the experience remarkable for both the client and their audience.”

-Jim Antonopoulos

Everyone from a child to an adult loves to read and tell stories. Learning can often be done through storytelling. It is a powerful tool that could be used in designing classroom training, eLearning courses, mobile learning or any other presentation. Storytelling in eLearning helps to grab learners attention, remember the information easily, motivate the learner to achieve learning goal, connect with the audience, makes the learner think, etc.

Here’s how storytelling can be incorporated in eLearning to make the courses more interesting and engaging:

Develop Interest: Suppose you are developing a training course for a new product launched in similar markets, then it can include the story of the person whose life has improved after using the product.

Explain a Concept: For example, a training course designed for the employees working from home can include stories of people working from home. These stories can elaborate on the challenges of working from home, time management, managing both tasks, etc.

Overcome Problems: Imagine you are developing a course on Equal Employment Opportunity. A main character who has struggled can be portrayed. Introduce the character to the audience and depict him/her with an image throughout the course. The character’s experiences at job interviews could be described. Ask learners questions about how he/she should have reacted in this situation. Then a happy ending could be given to the story by telling that the character got a good job.

Give a Structure: For instance, you are designing a course on ‘Coaching and Mentoring’, then you can introduce two characters with names, one as mentor and other as mentee. Then the characters can give their experiences on how the mentor met the mentee, their meetings, planning and so on.

Thus we come to the conclusion that storytelling in eLearning could be as follows:

  • Begin with a story idea, and brainstorm possibilities for the beginning, middle and end elements to bring forth movements.
  • Develop a story plot by selecting well-linked movements.
  • Make a storyboard by presenting movements with iconic multimedia components.
  • Develop the content by use of text, videos, images, graphics and audio elements.

So, now you can design your eLearning in a storytelling format. Do share if you have any new ideas!

View eBook on The Power of Stories in E-learning - Immersive Learning for Business Results

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