A 7-Step Instructional Design Guide For eLearning Gamification

eLearning badges, leaderboards, points, and leveling up can be powerful motivators for your online learners. In this article, I’ll offer a 7-step guide that Instructional Designers can use to gamify the eLearning experiences they design for their audience without losing sight of the subject matter.

This post was first published on eLearning Industry.

3 Keys To Engaging Your Learners With Gamification

If we want to get time and attention from our learners, let's start by recognizing how important these are for them and how we can tap into their motivations for sustained and enduring learning. Once we start to think of our learning experiences this way, gamification can help make this come true.

This post was first published on eLearning Industry.

8 E-Learning Production Tips for Your Next Gamified Course

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The other day I got one of those marketing emails that I tend to delete without looking over. However, this one featured some ideas on gamification. And what got me most interested was looking at their examples. As we all know, gamification is a hot topic and it’s always neat to see how different groups build the gamified elements in their courses.

Ingenuiti put together a portfolio page with three different gamified examples. They use three micro games to teach and demonstrate some core gamification concepts.

I reviewed their modules and want to highlight a few production tips that not only work for gamified e-learning courses, but are just as useful in other contexts. For today’s post, I’ll focus on the first micro game.

Here’s a link to the video tutorial series.

Gamification Micro Game #1

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The first micro game focuses on three types of learning activities:

  • Simple Game: challenge the learners understanding in a common game format. It’s a great way to rehearse and recall information and do it in a fun way that is familiar to most people.
  • Explore Activity: have the learner explore the environment and collect information or rewards. I always consider exploration to be one of the core building blocks for interactive learning. Given the right context, exploration is a great way to engage and inspire critical thinking.
  • Simple Scenario: the learner observes an interaction, reflects on it, and then offers constructive input. Mimicking real-world type interactions is a good way to reinforce the learning experience. They do some clever things with the commenting, liking, and bookmarking.

There’s a lot going on in their modules. I isolated a few things that they did so that I can show some production tips and nuances of the software. Keep in mind, there’s always a few ways to do the same thing in software. So if you have different or even better ideas, feel free to share them in the comments.

Here are some videos that offer some real quick tutorials on how you can create similar effects and interactions in your own e-learning courses. I’m using Storyline because it’s easy to use, but you’re free to use the software of your choice, especially if you have plenty of time on your hands and not rushed to get things done. 			</div><!-- .entry-content -->
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„Alle Spiele sind ernsthaft“

Was habe ich aus diesem Interview mit Linda Breitlauch, Professorin für Intermedia Design an der Hochschule Trier, mitgenommen? Folgender Punkt: Spielekonzepte sind ja in der Erwachsenen- und Weiterbildung nichts Neues. Nur beim Übergang in die Online-Welt (Serious Games, Gamification) gibt es einen Bruch. Nur wenige Pädagog*innen wissen, wie und was online gespielt wird, und so schaffen es auch nur wenige Spiele und Spielkonzepte aus der digitalen Welt in die Weiterbildung.

„Manchmal hilft es tatsächlich auch, fertige Produkte zu nehmen und sie einfach im Kontext der Weiterbildung einzusetzen. Ich nehme jetzt mal als Beispiel Minecraft. Minecraft ist ein Spiel, das wirklich ausschließlich als Unterhaltungsspiel konzipiert und entwickelt worden ist, weltweit unglaublich erfolgreich war und dann von Lehrern entdeckt wurde und in Schulen eingesetzt wird, zum Beispiel für Erdkunde-Unterricht. Solche Ansätze kann man auch mit anderen Spielen verfolgen, die es bereits gibt.

Man widmet sie quasi um, dafür muss man dann nichts Neues herstellen. Deswegen muss man sich einfach mal anschauen, was es an Spielen eigentlich gibt und in welchen Kontexten man sie einsetzen kann. Da muss man zugeben, dass es noch relativ wenig Fachexperten gibt, die sowas bewerten können, weil sie wissen müssen, welche didaktischen Modelle in der Weiterbildung funktionieren und auf der anderen Seite müssen sie auch alle Spiele kennen.“

Anonsten: Wie immer, wenn über Spiele geredet wird, werden viele interessante Beispiele genannt. Ob Serious Games allerdings noch als Trend durchgehen? Die Frage nach der Wirksamkeit und Nachhaltigkeit von Spielen ist dagegen eine, mit der man sich im Gespräch gegenseitig nur quälen kann. Und der abschließende Hinweis auf die überall integrierten Schrittzähler zeigt, wo uns Gamification heute schon überall ganz selbstverständlich begegnet.
Angelika Gundermann, Interview mit Linda Breitlauch, wb-web, 12. September 2017

Bildquelle: Andrew Robles (Unsplash)

Free eBook: How Gamification Is Reshaping Corporate Training – Featuring 10 Examples

This free eBook, How Gamification Is Reshaping Corporate Training – Featuring 10 examples, provides several insights on the usage of gamification for serious learning, and how you can use it for your diverse corporate training needs to increase employee engagement and boost performance.

This post was first published on eLearning Industry.

4 Types Of Gamers And Learner Engagement

So,, you've invested in a gamified learning platform, your learners have become gamers, and you need to adapt your training approach. Bartle's taxonomy of player types provides a handy way to look at the different motivations that drive engagement on gamified systems.

This post was first published on eLearning Industry.

How To Create A Meaningful And Engaging Compliance Course

Compliance courses are often driven by the corporate “compliance mandate” and tend to miss the ingredients for learners to relate to them, internalize the information, and apply it. As I see it, given the significance of the compliance mandate, there should be a higher focus on using approaches that appeal to the learners, impart learning that will stick, and finally ensure that this learning indeed gets applied at work.

Creating A Meaningful And Engaging Compliance Course

In this article, I will outline how we have made compliance courses meaningful to the learners, ensure the learning sticks, and increase the probability of this learning getting applied at work.

Why are compliance courses normally boring?

Compliance courses primarily revolve around dry concepts such as knowing a set of guidelines or dos and don’ts.

Although learners like taking courses that are user-friendly and easy to understand, they do not appreciate the traditional read-through/click-through information and quiz process, devoid of any ingredients to excite them. This impacts learnability and eventually results in lesser or no retention of learning.

Is it possible to integrate innovative learning strategies to compliance courses?

We have over a decade’s expertise in building compliance courses for various industries (most notably finance, healthcare, and insurance). Creation of immersive learning being our forte, we have infused life in compliance concepts, thereby providing scope for higher learner satisfaction and a better ROI for our customers.

We have adopted learning designs that provide an innovative, engaging, and learner-centric learning experience through:

  • Gamification.
  • Partial gamification.
  • Scenarios.
  • Story based narratives.

What can be done to instill the spirit of “why comply” in the learners?

In this article, I will use a case study to illustrate how we have created an engaging learning experience that leverages the power of scenarios (with variations mapped to suit the compliance mandate).

Case Study (Introduction To The Code Of Conduct)

Rather than starting with the dos and don’ts of a typical compliance program, we used the creative Instructional Design approach to present the content to help learners realize why they need to comply and hence provide long-term gain to our customers.

We worked with our Subject Matter Expert and established the learning outcomes that learners need to achieve for the compliance mandate to be met.

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How did we catch the learners’ attention?

In Introduction to the Code of Conduct, our course focused on:

    1. The Code of Conduct and the reasons why it is created.
    2. The application of the Code at work.
    3. The situations when good conduct may be compromised or at risk.
    4. How to choose the right path and avoid putting oneself and the company at risk.

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How did we make this course more engaging?

    1. The language and the examples used in this course are simple and easily understandable by all employees, whether it is a front-desk employee or a Senior Manager.
    2. It is applicable to all industries, which means it is a generic Code of Conduct and not specific to any particular industry.
    3. It does not cover all of the subjects in a typical Code so that they do not consider that they are now familiar with the Code and there is no need to read the actual document.

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What was the essence of our learning strategy?

Our learning strategy was woven with a greater emphasis on scenarios, examples, exercises, and inline checks in interesting formats.

  1. We used scenarios in two formats:
    • Quick check-point after a learning element is completed (recall/understand level cognition).
    • Application of the learning in a real-life situation through “Choose the Right Path” (analyze and be ready to use this learning at work).
  2. We helped learners relate to these examples and scenarios and understand how to handle dilemma situations.
  3. In addition, we provided tips and best practices and other useful information from domain experts.
  4. Our purpose of turning acquisition of knowledge to application of knowledge was served with this apt mix of theory and application.

EI Design Compliance Courses 1

What more can be done to make compliance courses interesting and ensure that the learning gets applied?

Providing access on mobile devices (as well as desktops/laptops): The course is designed for mobile compatibility and runs seamlessly on PCs/laptops/tablets. This provides the required flexibility to the learner to access the course on a device of their choice.

Use Performance Support Tools (PSTS): In the next article, I will share a few examples on how you can complement or supplement Compliance through innovative value-adds, such as Performance Support Tools (PSTs). These are designed to help learners not just know about but also act in compliance on the job. This is one of our areas of expertise in terms of transforming acquisition of knowledge to application of the same.

Innovation and provision of that little “extra” is something we work on constantly. I hope this article was useful in providing pointers to create your own meaningful and engaging compliance course. If you have any queries, do contact me.

Source: https://www.eidesign.net/how-to-create-a-meaningful-and-engaging-compliance-course/

What Is Bespoke eLearning? Featuring 6 Killer Examples

The edge that a bespoke or custom developed course has over off-the-shelf course is well established. In this article I will illustrate the power of bespoke eLearning to create sticky learning through 6 examples. I have picked examples that address varied training needs like compliance, application simulation, and professional skills.

what is bespoke elearning?

What Is Bespoke eLearning?

There are two kinds of online courses that you can choose from for your eLearning needs:

  • Off-the-shelf courses (generic).
    Off-the-shelf courses are ready to use.
  • Bespoke (also known as custom) courses.
    Bespoke or custom courses, as the name suggests, are specifically designed or tailor made to meet your requirement.

Off-the-shelf courses can be deployed quickly, whereas bespoke or custom courses will need longer time to develop and deploy. While bespoke courses may be more expensive on account of initial development costs, they would not have any associated recurring licensing costs.

What Are The Advantages Of Using Bespoke eLearning?

Bespoke eLearning courses are branded for your organization. They may use the raw content that you have or use content that is specifically created for you. The examples and case studies would be relevant to your organization and the assessments would be specifically designed for you. Their design approach factors for your learners’ preferences, your culture, and is tailor made to meet your learning and business mandates.

How Does Bespoke eLearning Fare Against Off-the-shelf Courses?

Off-the-shelf courses are quicker to deploy, but have certain inherent shortcomings. By definition, they are generic and may not be able to meet the specific requirements of your organization. Again, they offer standard features that you need to live with and they cannot be customized to suit your specific requirements.

Let us see how these aspects are offset in the bespoke approach and what advantages you will get when you opt for it:

  1. The courses are developed as per your branding. They feature your imagery and this helps learners relate and connect better to the learning piece.
  2. The content is specific to you and your learners. It is presented in a form that will engage them and ensures the required learning mandate is met.
  3. The learning experience is customized to your program. It uses a learning strategy that is best suited to meet the required learning mandate.
  4. The Assessment strategy is customized and aligns effectively to your learning and business mandates.
  5. Looking at your dynamics, the delivery format can be for traditional eLearning or multi-device (the content would run on tablets and smartphones). This enables you to choose an authoring tool that is most suited to your requirements.
  6. You can also decide on supplementing your primary eLearning with Performance Support intervention that can lead to better application of the learning on the job. This will have a significant impact on the ROI of eLearning.

The Bespoke eLearning Advantage Through 6 Examples

Let me illustrate the advantages of bespoke eLearning through 6 examples.

I have selected examples that address varied training needs like compliance, application simulation, and professional skills. The first example illustrates an approach that is scalable and can be applied for any training area like soft skills, induction programs, and so on.

Bespoke eLearning Example 1: To highlight intuitive and immersive experience.

This example is my personal favorite, as it showcases a design that does not have a “Click next to continue” or “Prompt text”. The learner can intuitively ascertain (through visual cues provided alongside the content) on what should be done next. It creates an immersive and engaging learning experience.

It is a multi-device design that adapts equally well to PCs/laptops or tablets.

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Bespoke eLearning Example 2: Gamification in Compliance.

We created a simulation-based task-oriented Gamification course, which was interactive and engrossing. To achieve this, we incorporated a real work environment (visually), an element of challenge (bonuses and bombs), rewards for success (caps, badges), and learning through activities including elements of surprise and delight.


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Bespoke eLearning Example 3: Branching scenario and simulations with a progress indicator.

This example showcases a complex decision making scenario. While the learners are going through the scenario, the visual indicator (shown on the right) provides cues on how they are faring. This enables them to pause and reflect on their choices and even re-think their strategy mid-course.

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Bespoke eLearning Example 4: Application Simulation.

This is a great example of how we uplifted dry and linear content into an interesting and engaging format.

We chose a responsive design (to support PCs, Laptops, Tablets, and Smartphones) and made learning bite-sized enabling learners to undertake a long, arduous journey in short, engaging steps.

You can view the “Office 2013 – Application Simulation” under App Simulations section (as part of our Demos).

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Bespoke eLearning Example 5: Scenario with a twist.

In our suite of Generic Compliance, we chose a scenario with a twist by adding a theme of “Choose the Right Path”. While all of us have a sense of right and wrong, this approach added value in the context of the specific compliance mandate in terms of the most appropriate behavior and why the learners need to demonstrate the same.

You can view the “Compliance – Introduction to the Code of Conduct” under Compliance section (as part of our Demos).

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Bespoke eLearning Example 6: Performance Support Tool – Featuring Interactive PDFs as a learning aid to supplement online learning.

This is also one of my personal favorites, as it provides a better learning experience through simplicity.

Interactive PDFs can be used to convert mountains of boring information into a visually appealing, interactive format. Furthermore, you can integrate videos, interactive demos, and audio to create an engaging learning experience.


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I do hope these examples illustrate the power of custom or bespoke eLearning in creating an effective and immersive learning experience. I look forward to your feedback and suggestions.

Source : What Is Bespoke eLearning? Featuring 6 Killer Examples

How To Create Engaging Compliance Courses Using Gamification And Microlearning

compliance courseWhen you think of compliance courses, possibly the first word that comes to mind is boring. Well, they tend to be boring but can be uplifted to offer better learner engagement. In this article, you will see how you can create engaging corporate compliance courses using gamification and microlearning approaches.

Using Gamification And Microlearning To Create Engaging Corporate Compliance Courses

Background: At EI Design, our corporate compliance practice is 14 years old. One in six courses that we build is on compliance. Over the years, we have used several innovative instructional strategies to create immersive and engaging compliance Training. Our mandate is “Corporate Compliance Simplified” and usage of these strategies has helped our customers see the required behavioral change that they sought.

What Innovative Instructional Strategies Can Be Used To Create Engaging Compliance Courses?

The choices when trying to create interactive compliance courses are limited only by your imagination. Some of the approaches we have used include:

    1. Gamification.
    2. Scenario-based.
    3. Story-based.
    4. Guided exploration.
    5. Microlearning.

Can Gamification And Microlearning Be Used To Uplift boring Content Associated With Compliance Courses?

Absolutely. Who doesn’t like having fun? Ask your learners to choose between a standard compliance course and one with an element of gamification with it, nine out of ten times they’ll go with the latter.

Microlearning, with its innate nature of brevity and flexibility to drive home a specific message effectively, can also be a great option to enliven your corporate compliance learning subjects.

In this article, I will share 3 of the approaches (featuring gamification strategies and microlearning solutions) with examples that will illustrate how you can enhance your strategy to create more effective and interactive compliance training. The 3 approaches featured here are:

    1. Gamification.
    2. Partial Gamification.
    3. Microlearning.

Here are the 3 examples that showcase how we integrated gamification and microlearning elements in compliance courses. These examples will help you determine how you can use them to make your compliance training interesting:

Example 1 Featuring Gamification: Used In A Course On Risk Management

Background: When dealing with corporate compliance subjects, it’s important not to get carried away with the gamification approach and overdo stuff. With this in mind, we devised our approach. Additionally, we decided that the gamification strategy:

    1. Needed to have elements of both challenge and reward.
    2. Must be such that the game scenario/story maps to the context of the course content.
    3. Needed to provide learners with a feeling of resonance – situations that are similar to what they do in their everyday job.
    4. Needed to increase the learners’ knowledge as they cleared one stage after the other.

Highlights of the concept: We came up with a gamification of learning approach that was task oriented and simulation based.

    1. In line with the contextual requirement, we mapped the game scenario with the risk management theme. We posed challenges to learners at every stage of the game. As they cleared each of these challenges, they experienced incremental learning after every stage.
    2. We provided the learners with a work setting (visual) that resembled their day to day environment.
    3. The challenges were presented in the form of bonuses and bombs and the rewards came in the form of caps and badges.
    4. That apart, we enhanced their learning experience with activities that evoked feelings of surprise and delight.
    5. We provided the option of seeking help to the learners as they went about their tasks. This resonated well with the learners as they would do the same in real life in times of need. Gamification of learning helped achieve better application of knowledge and enhanced performance.



Example 2 Featuring Partial Gamification: Used In A Course On Risk Management

Background: Here, the focus was on gamifying only portions of the course and not the complete course. We decided to gamify the inline checks and the assessment section. While the rest of the course followed a more traditional approach, we used the Partial Gamification approach at points where the learners needed to answer questions to proceed to the next topic.

Our concept: Like in the previous example, we based our gamification approach on the risk management theme and asked the learners to obtain an “access key” to be able to advance from one topic to another. The learners had to answer the questions correctly at the end of every topic to obtain the access key.

The theme also reflected in the overall visual appeal of the course.

Compliance course Access key

Example 3 Featuring Microlearning: Used To Reinforce Message On Conflict Management

Background: To make the compliance subject on conflicts of interest interesting, we created a microlearning nugget using the whiteboard animation technique. We used this nugget as a Performance Support Tool/Learning Aid and made it available to learners on tablets/smartphones/desktops/laptops. This made it easy for them to refer to the nugget at the time of their need on mobile devices.

Focus of the microlearning nugget: The microlearning nugget was built to complement a compliance course on conflict management. We kept the message and animations/illustrations simple providing the learners with a great mix of action on the screen and time to comprehend the message. To reinforce the message, we backed the visuals with audio.

The nugget conveyed in simple terms that conflicts do exist, how one can recognize them, and how they can be resolved.

Microlearning Compliance course EI Design

You can also view these examples in detail in the video below.


By Using Strategies Like Gamification And Microlearning, What Tangible Gains Will You See?

While the compliance mandate does come with a few strings attached, there is no denying that you need to have elements of engagement that can create sticky learning experiences so that this learning gets translated into application on the job.

By using innovative learning strategies like gamification and microlearning for creating engaging compliance courses, you will see clear gains for both learners and business. Specifically:

Gains From Learner Perspective:

    1. High learner engagement.
    2. Immersive experience: The courses are taken with genuine interest (no bitter pill but learners will enjoy the experience).

Gains From Business Perspective:

    1. Instils the spirit of “why comply”.
    2. Leads to the required behavioral change.

I hope this article showcases the gains of using innovative learning strategies like gamification and microlearning to create engaging compliance courses. If you have any questions, do contact me.

Source: How To Create Engaging Compliance Courses Using Gamification And Microlearning