Visual Design Part 1: How to Get Started

 

When I was interviewing for my first Instructional Designer job, I was asked many times about what I thought were the three most important things that made an eLearning course good. There’s really a lot that I could have listed. However, I always mentioned good visual design as one of the crucial things to get right. And they agreed.

For several reasons. I am only going to focus on two.

We know that first impressions matter. Besides, many times our learners are not really excited about taking the course, even if it’s not compliance training. So we don’t want to make a bad impression and possibly alienate them. They say “don’t judge a book by its cover”, but when we are browsing for a book, a film, or even a new beverage, we form an opinion based on the visuals. Have you ever decided against watching a film just because the graphics looked off? We need to gain the learners’ interest, not put them off. 

The other reason is that...

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My ID Love Affair with YouTube

Inspired by a social media post by IDOL Course Academy Alumna, Santana Kennedy.

Video informs and entertains people, and, good or bad, today most people prefer to watch a video rather than read a page of text. ~ Lisa Lubin

We know what Youtube is and we know how popular it is. But how can we IDOLs leverage the power of this awesome video-sharing platform? To some degree, it is necessary to use Youtube to advance ourselves professionally. 

Personally, I love YouTube in and outside of my work as an IDOL. In fact, I wouldn’t be an IDOL without it. It’s free, easy to use, and accessible; plus, you can reach a lot of people if used properly. I am confident that other professionals relied too on YouTube to view, create, learn, sell, and sometimes entertain themselves with the video content provided on there. 

 

Let me share some mind-blowing statistics on how powerful YouTube is.

  • Videos are a consumers’ favorite type of content from a brand on social...
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Lessons Learned During My First Big ID Project

I have been an ID for some time now.  Mostly working independently on projects except for referring to a couple of Subject Matter Experts (SMEs) to ensure I have processes and terminology correct.

 I was very excited when I was asked to be part of a large, high profile project. We were asked to redesign a New Hire Training (NHT) that traditionally was done face-to-face and took approximately five weeks to complete.  The redesign was an innovative concept to the company, and the reason it became such a high profile. Everyone wanted to know how the new concept would work. We developed a blended learning course for NHT, which reduced training time to only 3 weeks. 

You are probably thinking – Blended learning is nothing new. It has been a valid teaching strategy for years. However, my new company had been solely creating facilitator-led training before this. We were finally breaking into more modernized training methods.

This was going to be my very first...

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Bringing Learning Design Theory Down to Earth

 Professional learning designers are skilled at informing their practice with current research and theory, but building this skill can be challenging – especially for beginners. With so much information out there, how can you ground your design decisions without wasting time or getting lost in tangents that are irrelevant or overly complex? 
  1. Get familiar with the major theories of how people learn.

Before you can apply a theory, you need to understand it. In most learning design graduate programs you’ll get to deep dive into learning theories like behaviorism, cognitivism, constructivism and others, but you don’t have to join a graduate program to do this. IDOL courses Academy includes bite-sized modules on the major theories you’ll need to know as a learning designer. A good test for whether you’re familiar with a learning theory is whether you can describe it simply, with the kind of language you might use when chatting with a...

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