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Storytelling – Its Impact and Benefits to E-learning

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Storytelling - Its Impact and Benefits to E-learning

“If history were taught in the form of stories, it would never be forgotten.” – Rudyard Kipling

Stories have enormous power over people’s hearts and minds for a reason. It is hard to find someone who is not fascinated by stories. Right from a child to an adult, all of us like to listen to stories. They play a significant role to educate and inspire the listeners. Stories are powerful tools that help the learner delve deep into the concept as they have a strong emotional connect. Stories bring in a powerful, clear and a meaningful experience.

According to one of the recent articles published in Psychology Today, stories impact people even in this digital age. This is because technology has evolved at a high speed but not a human brain. Based on this concept storytelling can be applied to e-learning when teaching concepts, and creating an engaging environment for the learner. It is an effective medium to impart knowledge and retain information longer. Story telling is one of the most popular instructional strategies to develop online course design.

Let’s take a look at some essential aspects to be considered while incorporating storytelling into e-learning: 

  • Make the story realistic and purposeful for learners and keep the message clear.
  • Use characters that are relevant and familiar so that the learner can relate to the content easily.
  • Use visuals to grab learner-attention.
  • Keep the story simple and crisp as the learner may be bored with lengthy stories.
  • The essential objective of incorporating a story is to educate the learners in an engaging and entertaining way. This keeps them motivated throughout the course. Also, convey the intended message effectively.
  • It is always good to demonstrate the challenges faced by the target audience in your story and give solutions to these issues. 

Let’s take a look at how a story in e-learning engaged Mike to take training effectively: 

Mike is an employee of an organization who takes a course on performance management process. After reading through the course he was unable to understand a bit of it. He felt he was going through Greek and Latin and did not have a clue of what he was reading through. Now, the same course was made effective by the use of a story. Mike could understand what performance management process was all about with the help of the story. He could make out how the mid-year reviews are done. He got the buzz of the course. This made the course effective and engaging for Mike. So, the real life experiences that were narrated in the story helped him to understand the concepts. 

Storytelling engages the learners and connects them into the flow of the course.

Storytelling for effective e-learning:

Engaging learners in a self-paced learning is challenging especially with policies and processes. Take a look at how e-learning engages the learners to complete the course effectively:

  • Stories in e-learning engage and motivate the learners to achieve the desired objectives
  • Transfers content to the learner in a unique way
  • They connect the learner, well into the subject
  • Makes content more meaningful
  • Helps to apply the acquired knowledge
  • Enables the learner to retain information longer

Storytelling in e-learning engages the learners and makes it more interesting. They depict possible challenges with realistic scenarios and possible solutions. 

Storytelling in e-learning depends on the objective of the course. According to Marcus Sedgwick, A Story has its purpose and its Path. It must be told correctly for it, to be understood”

What do you do to make your story engaging to the learners? Do share your views.

View eBook on 10 E-learning Interactivities that Engage Your Learners


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