Enter into an LMS, find the course section, and pull out a module. Then flip to the summary section.
This is what you are sure to find on every e-learning course: A clutter of many fascinating points of the subject.
And there’s a reason why summary make it to the attention of the learner.
It’s because you tend to read the title, then the subtitle and then flip to the end to get the gist of the course
Yes there’s the blah, blah, blah about the summary and the exercise in the end. Yes, there’s a table of content. Yes, there are contents pages.
But you ignore most of the blah, blah, blah and head for the summary.
You do it because summary and exercise activities are like flashing Christmas lights.
They flash because they are able to create curiosity. And not just little bit of curiosity, but is creates a lot of it.
So here, in our LMS, E-three, there is a course that’s about energy management. And the very starting of the course are the following points.
- What is energy management
- Why is energy management important
- How to effectively manage energy
Notice how we’ve put the entire guts of the subject in those three simple points?
And did you notice how the above points start with a “question”?
So let’s tackle these two ideas one by one.
1st Idea: notice how each of those points started with a “question”?
It doesn’t matter what the line. If you put a question before it, it instantly becomes interesting and gets the readers curiosity going.
Or you can always add a time frame to the question which does the same trick.
How to make money
How to make money in 30 days
A trip to Greece
Why I went to Greece this summer
It is very obvious that any instructional designer won’t use any boring sentences, but the point is to trigger curiosity of the learner to keep reading and learning.
Now, the only question that remains is, how to tickle one’s curiosity? And the answer lies in the second idea.
2nd Idea: Notice how we’ve put the entire guts of the subject in those three lines?
So take your entire course or subject, or topic, or whatever. Split it up into many distinct parts.
For example, the above course on “Energy Management” has three sections, so it could naturally be split into three distinct parts.
Then focus on something from each part to describe the benefit the reader could get from that particular section.
So for the Energy Management course, the points read like this:
- How to manage non renewable energy resources
- What are the principles of energy systems and energy conversions
- Why new and renewable energy sources are necessary to study
- How to increase energy supply and power generation
Each of these points represents a different part of the course.
And each of them has a simple “how”, “why” or “What” structure to get and keep attention.
The fundamentals are easy
Take your training material. Divide it into five or seven parts and prioritize its most important highlights or benefits.
Use these highlights or benefits and put a “question” before each one.
And baamm… you have a collection of the perfect course outline.
And that’s how you make your training or course stand out. Just like flashing Christmas lights.