Scenarios, especially branching ones, are an effective way to make your courses more engaging. Instead of just reading the screen and reaching completion, the learners are forced to get involved in the scenario. They try to place themselves in that situation and resolve the problem.

Characteristics of scenario based learning

Scenarios are not easy to build. It must have certain core characteristics for it to be engaging to the learners.

  • First and foremost, a scenario has to be realistic. The learners will have to identify with it in order to resolve it.
  • It should be focused on the learner. The scenario should utilize the learners’ core strength as well as enhance their weak points.
  • Scenarios must be interactive. It should provide different options and consequences for resolving the same problem.
  • If you are building a scenario after introducing a topic, you need to ensure that resolving the scenario will involve skills and knowledge gathered from that topic. Most people learn better by doing rather than just reading theories.

3 Cs of building a scenario

Every scenario should consist of a challenge, more than one choice option, and then consequences of choosing an option. The Cs help branch out the scenario and create a story-like learning that makes the course engaging. There are so many ways in which you can build a scenario. For example, you may decide to use a branch just to test the knowledge of a learner and not score it. Or you may use a branch to restrict movement. The learner is allowed to move on only if he gets the right answer.

Scenario based learning

In the image seen here, you are presenting a challenging situation to the learner. The learner has three choices. Every choice has a consequence attached. You could provide feedback after the learner makes a choice and let him continue the course. Or the consequence can be a new challenging situation having another set of choices and consequences. The branching can continue till you wish to end it.

Building scenarios in Articulate Storyline is easy

Articulate Storyline has many templates for building scenarios. Let’s talk about some of them.

Articulate Storyline Template 2-character
You can use this template if your scenario involves two people. You have the option to insert your own text, edit the choices provides, and create custom feedback for the learner based on the option they choose.

Storyline 1-Person Choice Template
This template helps you build an interactive scenario where the learner has to choose an option depending on the situation the character faces.

Storyline Template Sticky-note Desktop
This note card template is quite interactive. The learner first reads the scenario on the note card. Then he is asked to select one option, from several ones, on the sticky-notes. Then he is provided custom feedback based on his choice.

Storyline Tablet iPad Template
This template helps you add interactive content to a tablet or iPad kind of device. It is shaped as a tablet with an image of a hand that simulates the use of tablets.

StoryLine Corkboard Template
This template looks like papers held onto a corkboard with pushpins. You can easily change the text, move around the sheets of paper and pins.

StoryLine Useful Tips Template
This template is designed as a click-through course with helpful tips. The character is available in various poses and on different backgrounds. Like the other templates, this one is customizable too.

These are just a few of them. Articulate Storyline has many more interactive and useful templates to build scenarios for your course.