Branching Scenarios

The designing of an eLearning course involves a lot of creative thinking. A short attention span is a problem even with the most interesting subjects and topics, and when it comes to more monotonous or repetitive topics, it can present a real hurdle to learning. In eLearning, it can also prompt learners to delay taking up another course or not take it up at all.

This is why engagement should be at the top of the list of priorities when developing an eLearning course. One method that can come in handy is to introduce branching scenarios. What do we mean by branching scenarios? Let’s have a closer look.

What are Branching Scenarios

Let’s say you are training a group on compliance regulations in the workplace. This is a very important topic, but we may agree that it might not be the most interesting for the learners. Your aim is to show the learners why these regulations are essential. By using a branching scenario and involving the learners in the decision-making process, you can clearly display to them how making the wrong decision can cause serious problems.
When you include a branching scenario in your eLearning course, you are presenting the learner with two or more paths they can take, allowing them to learn from their mistakes, but without the real risk.

Branching Scenarios & Gamification

Gamification – including game elements in your eLearning development – is a perfect fit with branching scenarios. If you design your course as a game in which the learner has to, for example, find the hidden treasure or reach a certain goal, you can combine the topic of the course with fun yet important decisions that will lead the learner through the course.

With branching scenarios, you can also allow your more advanced learners to skip a section of the content they are already familiar with and go straight to a more advanced knowledge branch. However, it is advisable to test their knowledge before they continue, and this can be done by including fun quizzes or interactive tasks that will both entertain them and assess if they are ready to move on to the more advanced branch.

Short & Simple Branching

Branching scenarios can also be used to break down a complex segment of the content. For example, if something we want to explain consists of several parts, we can create a branch for each part. In this way, a learner can explore each part separately but return to the branching screen each time to understand that those parts are all connected like branches on a tree, and they together form a bigger picture.

Therefore, branching scenarios are excellent for enhancing engagement, and they are worth considering when developing an eLearning course.