December 1, 2020 by Bearded Matthew
Learning & Development is a rapidly growing sector and the demand for effective content is growing fast.
Whether you are creating a platform from scratch or updating existing learning content, these 10 tips will help you create the best ROI for everyone involved.
1 – Invest in the Design
Invest time and resources in the design and execution of the content. Providing your learners with high quality learning resources will help your learners feel respected and regard the experience as positive, which will encourage motivation and support more learners to finish the course.
2 – Keep it simple
Ensure that the animation connects with your learners at an appropriate learning level and make sure you present the information to them simply. The content should avoid any abstract concepts, images or language.
3 – Engage don’t distract
Create L&D resources that are interesting enough to hold the learners attention but that are not distracting. Add variety to the tone of delivery of the animation with the use of carefully planned gestures and movement. Do not over complicate the content with movement – a well thought out learning resource with a little (or no) animation will always be more successful than a badly designed animation with lots of movement.
4 – Keep momentum with a well paced script
Work with a professional L&D scriptwriter or agency to create a well written, well paced script. This should include key messages only and will have just the right amount of repetition to aid learning.
5 – Offer visual and audio cues
Learners have a greater chance of recalling information if they have stored it both visually and verbally. (Check out duel-coding theory for more information) Provide your learner with both verbal associations and visual imagery but be aware not to bombard them with too much information. Keep the detail of what you want them to learn in the audio and use text to highlight key messages that are spoken. This will support the learner to commit both visual and verbal information to long term memory and encourage deep learning to occur.
6 – Use conversational voice
Commission an experienced voice over artist that your audience can relate to and that fits with the theme of the animation and/or the chosen character. The voiceover should be brief and to the point but delivered in a conversational, likeable manner.
7 – Support Active Learning
Offering active learning content will motivate and engage learners and will help them to take control of their own learning journey. There are many ways you can do this; including playback/ pause options on the content will help learners progress at their own pace & re-learn content they want to go back over. Including simple gamification techniques such as clicking on trigger objects or encouraging team learning will help to drive engagement, and introducing questions and reflection time into the learning programme will encourage critical thinking skills and help the learner evaluate where they are in their learning journey.
8 – Put things into context
Deep learning is the goal, and as L&D professionals, we know that facilitating this can be tricky. Deep learning has a greater chance when a learner is able to associate the information provided with something they already know – they are able to put it into context and make sense of it. Ensure the content you provide is meaningful to your learners by offering it to them after they have already learnt basic principles about the subject. (Show them the animation after other learning opportunities.) Offer other opportunities for context by setting learning goals for the content and showing exactly what the learner will gain from the animation, and where in the learning journey they are.
9 – Embed inclusive Co-Design from the start
This goes without saying, but the L&D content must be easily accessible to all learners of all ages with a range of needs. Engage a wide range of stakeholders in all elements of the design process and begin each project by considering and understanding the needs of users with different abilities to ensure you co design content that can support of all these learning needs. A good learning designer will be able to explore practical considerations such as content navigation, colour contrast, size of text, accessibility options etc.
10 – Make the most of your assets
Animated content is an incredibly versatile and high value comms tool. It can have a huge lifespan and be edited for a range of mediums and iterations when planned in advance and can last beyond live action content.
Content that uses pre prepared brand assets or that is created to follow a brands guidelines can be scaled and templated and used for many years to come. Alternatively, content can be created to stand out from the rest of the brand content and given its own look and feel. Discuss this with your L&D content team who will present multiple options to help you gain the most value out of your content.
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