Scenario-based learning, though quite overused in today’s e-learning courses, still has a charm to it that attracts Instructional Designers to this strategy. Whenever there is a need to engage the learner and make courses interactive, use scenarios. And why not! After all, shouldn’t your courses be engaging enough to motivate the learners to take them? Scenarios are an icing on the cake to an otherwise dull, boring, and linear course. The learner would definitely be motivated now! The motivation, though, can be interpreted differently from a learner’s perspective – it could either be to get certified, achieve a training goal, or meet employer expectations.
Argh!! There goes a brilliant strategy down the drain.
Now, imagine if a learner’s real motivation is the fun and excitement of going through the course, enjoying full control over the learning. Wouldn’t that be great?
Welcome to learner-driven scenarios, a slightly ‘difficult to implement’ but effective strategy to provide flexible learning options and opportunities for higher levels of engagement. Hand over the reins to the person who wants to learn. The learner gets to choose the learning method based on personal preferences. Excellent, it’s all very hunky-dory in theory, but how do you apply it?
Well, to put things in perspective, consider learner-driven scenarios a subset of Exploratory Learning. Begin with analysing the starting point and the destination point the learner should ideally be at. Next, list out all possible methods the learner can utilize to make that journey exciting and the ones that will make the journey painful. Then, prepare a question bank from these methods and let the learner choose the path, learning from mistakes made along the journey. Remember, you should be a guide and a mentor walking the path along with the learner, rather than being that authoritative dictator using the stick to teach the learner.
Scenario-driven learning; the traditional tried and tested strategy of building learning solutions or learner-driven scenarios; putting the learner’s needs first; bringing that much needed zeal to your courses! Which one would you choose?