Is 3D media a better choice than 2D for asynchronous learning experiences?
First, context: I think marketing and entertainment savvy have an important place in training and development. All cross-disciplinary approaches to improve the design and production of exceptional online learning experiences are welcome. Enspire’s own media subsidiary, Houndstooth, reflects this philosophy – cross pollinating heavily between the worlds of marketing, learning, and entertainment, and deploying 3D or 2D media as need dictates.
That said, I’ve noticed customers are specifically seeking out vendors to create 3D environments for asynchronous learning experiences. Note the “asynchronous” modifier. I’m referring to single user experiences, not multi-user virtual worlds.
Matt Lisle, Instructional Designer at Enspire Learning, and Dawn Adams Miller, from Cisco’s Learning & Development Solutions Group, teamed up in this Brandon Hall webinar to explore storytelling as a technique for presenting learning content. Matt and Dawn explain how the graphic novel approach was used to engage learners in a corporate-wide initiative at Cisco. You’ll learn how the project progressed from selling the concept to the stakeholders, through design, development, implementation and deployment.
VCA Animal Hospitals (NASDAQ:WOOF) operates over 580 small animal hospitals in 41 states and Canada, staffed with 2,600 fully qualified, dedicated, and compassionate doctors. VCA partnered with Enspire to create an 11 hour blended curriculum focused on doctor communication skills, of which high quality video is an important piece. The large video shoot supporting the program took place recently in Austin, and while days were long it was a resounding success. Here’s how your shoot can succeed, too. Continue reading →
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Enspire’s media arm Houndstooth worked with RAPP and Element X Creative to produce this video. RAPP was responsible for the creative, Element X did the animation and Houndstooth handled 3d modeling of the card, music composition, sound design and mix.
At Enspire Learning, we pride ourselves on creating learning experiences that directly impact a specific target audience, designated by each valued client. So when we design those experiences, we take a great deal of care to investigate and understand who those end-users are.
As a timely metaphor, our best learning products are like well-wrapped presents, carefully chosen for each recipient. This holiday season, we’ve created a handy shopping list of the important questions we ask ourselves when considering what “gift” to give our clients and end-users.
1. What’s the occasion?
Gifts are rarely given without cause – they are usually intended for a recipient who is celebrating an occasion: birthday, shower, Kwanzaa, retirement, etc. You pick a gift to commemorate an important occasion.
When designing e-learning, we must have a deep understanding of the learning occasion – is it on-boarding for new hires? Does the company want its employees to better understand its security policies? Is there a need for management training? Start generally and whittle the need down until it’s a precise problem to be solved. For instance, if a client specifies a need for a new-hire orientation, investigate further to understand why the product is needed now. Maybe there’s been evidence that recent hires don’t fully understand their benefit packages. Maybe a certain group at the company plans to bring on a large number of new employees and wants uniformity in their on-boarding experience. Understand the occasion and you can better understand your intended recipient. Continue reading →
After reading a recent Wired article about applications aimed at users’ secondary attention, I started thinking about new ways to use mobile devices for learning: second screen apps. Second screen apps are mobile apps that are typically used to complement television viewing. Why couldn’t they be used to complement learning events, too? Couldn’t a second screen be useful during instructor-led classes, live virtual classes, and asynchronous e-learning courses?
The Autumn 2011 issue of The Dispatch, Enspire’s quarterly newsletter, is now available on the website.
This issue includes:
Happy 10th Anniversary, Enspire: A Timeline
A Word from CEO Bjorn Billhardt
“Practice Makes Performance” by Mindy Jackson
“Mobile Learning and France” by Matt Lisle
Q&A with Houndstooth’s David Crumley
Click here to view the latest issue of The Dispatch.
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True or False?Captions text should be “On” by default because some people like to read rather than listen.
False: Best practices for multimedia learning experiences include turning captions “Off” by default to allow learners the opportunity to learn simultaneously from the visuals and the audio.
A common misconception among many of my e-learning clients is that e-learning courses should have captions “On” by default. They reason that because some people prefer to read text rather than listen to voice over, we should always put the transcript on screen. The truth is that in well-designed multimedia programs with high-quality effective visual communication, having captions “Off” by default tends to create more effective learning experiences.
1. Subtitled film effect
I thoroughly enjoy foreign films. And although I’m proficient at reading subtitles, while watching a film, the fact remains that when I’m reading subtitles, I’m looking away from the imagery of the film. I’m missing cinematography, the facial expressions, poignant edits, subtle camera shifts…in short, the visuals.
Having captions “On” in e-learning modules hinders learning, in part because when learners are reading text, they are missing the visual content that – if well designed –has been created to convey information in ways that the voice over (text) cannot. If the visuals in your e-learning program are important to the learning experience, then don’t distract learners from that visual content by distracting them with captions to read. Turn captions “off” by default. (See this article for more research on split-attention effect.)
2. Inadequate use of visuals
If the visuals are not important to the learning experience, then you have a different issue altogether. If content is not being communicated visually (a talking head is presenting information verbally, for example) then you could argue that you’re not distracting learners from any content by allowing them to read instead of listen. In which case, I would suggest that you ask why the visuals are not critical to the learning experience. Continue reading →