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Scenarios to Enhance Learning

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How do you go about preparing a storyboard? A few slides introducing lesson 1 and then a check your understanding slide. Then come a few slides for the next lesson followed by a check your understanding slide. And then again come a few more slides for the next lesson followed by a summary slide and final quiz.

I am sure you got bored reading the above paragraph. The same is the case with your learners. For on-the-job training topics, the above storyboard structure may lack on-the-job context. Therefore, while teaching on-the-job training topics, scenarios are of great help to enhance the learners’ capacity to perform on the job.

Here are a few steps to present your scenarios in eLearning and make them applicable on the job:

  • 1. Introduce the scenario: While introducing the lesson, take your learners through the scenario. In a lot of cases, we see that real-life triggers help to connect the given scenario with the actual one. Thus, introducing a scenario in the beginning of the course makes it easier to recall it later.

    For example: Let us say you are working on a sales training course for a mobile services company, XYZ. You want to teach sales people how to handle various customers and their queries. You need to start by introducing the scenario to your learners for example you say “You are a sales agent at XYZ company. You get a call from a customer asking ‘what is the procedure to stop unwanted promotional calls?’.

  • 2. Post “what-if” questions: Continuing the example given in point one, once you introduce the scenario to your learners, you might be tempted to give them the correct answers, right away. Right? No, that is an old idea. Giving them the solutions immediately after outlining the scenario would restrict their ability to analyze the situation and come out with a suitable solution. Therefore, what you can do is once you introduce the scenario, ask your learners to predict the steps to solve it. This helps the learners to understand the variations of the situation and also add some information to aid in problem solving.
  • 3. Ask scenario-based questions: After introducing the scenario and posting ‘what if’ questions to your learners, the next possible step would be to test your learners using scenario-based questions asking them to resolve the situation appropriately. This gives the learners a better understanding of the situation. You can make this section even more engaging by giving the feedback for incorrect responses. For example, in a given situation, if the learner takes a step or takes a specific action then you could describe the on-the-job consequence or impacts of that specific action. Simultaneously, some hints can be given to guide the learner to the correct response for the given situation.

Thus it’s a good idea to first introduce the scenario to your learners, then post some what-if questions to them so that they can come out with a few varied solutions and then close it by asking some scenario-based questions which will highlight the do’s and don’ts on-the-job.

How else do you think you can use scenarios to enhance learning? Do share your inputs.

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