With the new features in Lectora Version X.5, you now have 23 new, real-life characters in 15 poses totaling 345 authentic photographs. How will you effectively use them in your eLearning courses and training? These photos, representing individuals with various ethnicities and professions that you can drag and drop into your Lectora titles, add personality and interactivity to your eLearning.
According to The Benefits of Interactive Online Characters, a study by Byron Reeves, online learning featuring characters provides advantages including: an increase in memory, trust and value of the learning information presented.
Use the following five guidelines to engage your learners and maximize their memory, trust and value of your eLearning course:
1. Make your eLearning personal. With eLearning characters, you can provide ways for your learners to interact with “real-life” people and gain one-on-one experience with an instructor – within the online environment. Keep this in mind when choosing characters and creating dialogue.
2. Choose the right characters and build them. Who are they? Why should your learner find their perspective valuable? What type of role do you want them to play? The key is to get creative, so think outside of the box, but here are three types of roles your characters can represent:
3. Create a story. Establish a storyline and dialogue consistent with your character’s background that continues through the course to create an engaging and life-like experience for your learners. Your characters can give examples from their experience, pose appropriate questions and praise your learners as their character type would.
4. Provide interactivity. Your character can greet, guide and provide appropriate information for your learners. Create actions to correspond to multiple activities performed by your learners that provide a different response or emotion, for example, for different types of scenarios. Your characters can pose questions, celebrate a correct answer and more to engage with your learners – the possibilities are endless.
5. Ensure that your characters’ roles are consistent. For example, if your character is an expert that has all of the information, make sure they stick to that role. If your character is a peer, avoid language that may be too high level for your end learners.
In order to create the most effective characters, keep in mind your learning goals and objectives. Different types of content and information prescribe different approaches for your eLearning courses and training. Most importantly, have fun! If you are having fun creating different story lines and scenarios, it will reflect in your final courses and your learners will have fun too.
Molly Horn is a Content Evangelist at Trivantis Corporation. She graduated from University of Cincinnati with a degree in Communication and focus in Public Relations.