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Branched Scenarios Using Storyline to Improve Decision-Making Skills

Danny is an eLearning developer working in a reputed pharmaceutical company. Recently, his boss asked him to develop an online course that teaches their sales reps how to respond effectively to customer queries. 

Chris is an online course developer in a multinational financial services company. A few days ago, he was told to come up with a self-paced technology-enabled learning resource to improve the decision-making skills of employees, who have been promoted to managerial roles.

In both these cases, learners need to be educated on the consequences of their actions and the new challenges they create. Sales staff must know how a customer would respond to a particular answer and the subsequent questions that may be posed as a result. Likewise, employees in managerial roles must be aware of the implications of their decisions and the new challenges that might crop up as a result of the decisions.

How can learners be taught the consequences of their actions in an effective manner? What does it take to train employees on handling challenges that arise as a result of the decisions they make? You need to go for branched learning scenarios that can be developed using authoring tools.

What is a branched learning scenario?

A branched learning scenario is an interactive learning element that presents the learner a problem, which can be tackled in multiple ways, and challenges him to choose one of the ways to resolve the problem. Based on the learner’s decision, a new challenge is presented to him, and based on how he reacts to this challenge, further challenges are presented.

Quizzes can also be used to help learners understand the consequences of their actions. How are they different from branched learning scenarios?

Quizzes and branched learning scenarios differ in one major aspect – linearity. In a “normal” quiz, the subsequent question has no relation to the current question. On the other hand, in a branched learning scenario, subsequent questions are posed, based on the answer selected by the learner.

For instance, a quiz asks the learner to choose the right response to a customer objection, and depending on the response, he is given a feedback whether the response is appropriate or not and why. Then, the quiz proceeds to another question which will be asked regardless of the answer provided by the learner to the previous question.

Whereas, in a branched learning scenario, the subsequent question is dependent on the response given by the learner. Say, there are four ways to tackle a customer objection. A different question props up for each option chosen by the learner.

What does it take to develop an effective branched learning scenario? 

You need to choose the right eLearning development software to create a good online branched learning scenario. One of the most popular eLearning development tools used to develop branched scenarios for corporate training is Articulate Storyline. Let us now look at the features of this rapid authoring tool that facilitate the effective development of branched learning scenarios.

A large library of in-built scenario templates

Articulate Storyline has several built-in templates that make the development of branched learning scenarios easy. These templates eliminate the need to develop a branched learning scenario from scratch. You can customize the templates based on your needs, and this goes a long way in creating branched scenarios that meet your specific learning needs.

Thousands of illustrated characters and stock photos

One of the key challenges in developing a good, “real-looking” branched learning scenario is the unavailability of appropriate images. This problem can be overcome effectively using Articulate Storyline. The latest version of the rapid authoring tool, Articulate Storyline 360, comes with hundreds of thousands illustrated characters and stock photos. The illustrated characters come in different poses, conveying a wide variety of emotions, such as happiness, anger, disappointment and so on.

Easy to use triggers in Articulate Storyline 

Triggers play a key role in developing a branched learning scenario by enabling the eLearning developer to display specific content, based on the response provided by the learner. For instance, you can use triggers to display different questions to a learner, based on the answer he furnishes. It is simple to use triggers in Articulate Storyline, thanks to the highly user-friendly interface of the eLearning development software.

We thus see that branched learning scenarios play a key role in helping learners understand the consequences of their actions in an effective manner and Articulate Storyline is a very good tool to create branched scenarios for training your learners. How do you use branched scenarios? We’d love to know.

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