Content Strategy

Design Thinking for L&D, Part 5: Integrating Design Thinking into L&D

Posted by Brandon Carson on Sep 10, 2014 7:16:00 AM

In the previous posts in this series, we discussed how to leverage Design Thinking modes to help create more effective learning experiences. In some respects, the Design Thinking modes (Empathy, Define, Ideate, Prototype) are similar to the traditional ADDIE process steps of Analysis, Design, Develop and Implement. We think the key differences between the two, however are quite stark. We’ve separated them into these elements:

  • A more radical collaboration among the internal and external teams
  • The ability to gain deep user insight
  • Heavier reliance on prototyping

Radical Collaboration

Too often, we fail to both effectively collaborate with our internal teams while designing learning experiences, and to foster a deeper collaboration with external stakeholders and the audiences we support. By conducting what we refer to as radical collaboration, you let go of the ego-centricity that many learning designers fall back on -- especially those of us that have many years’ experience doing what we do. We look at radical collaboration as “checking your ego at the door” and encourage people to provide input every step of the way on the solution being built. This is where you may consider adding elements of Agile into your process: daily stand-ups where you share what you’re working on with your team, granular user stories where you work out features and benefits, and constant feedback opportunities to ensure you’re on the right track.

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Topics: learning and development, training, instructional design, Brandon Carson, ADDIE, prototyping, design thinking, Tim Brown, collaboration, agile, user experience

Design Thinking for L&D, Part 4: Prototyping

Posted by Brandon Carson on Sep 3, 2014 4:00:00 AM

In Parts 1, 2 and 3 of this series, we introduced Design Thinking (DT) for L&D and discussed the Empathy, Define and Ideate modes. In this post, we’ll take a look at the fourth mode: Prototyping.

At the end of the day, prototyping is all about confirming or disproving your hunch with user feedback. No one will argue with you when you bring back user feedback. The key to a successful prototype experience is to build multiple rapid prototypes -- this will allow for more discovery and unbiased comparison. When rapid prototyping, it’s important to consider focusing on one variable for each prototype -- this will allow you to hone in on one aspect of the prototype to find if it works or not. It’s like separating the risks you want to explore -- keep the prototypes low-fi and quick to accelerate findings. You don’t need high-resolution, fully-produced prototypes to get the answers you need.

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Topics: learning and development, training, learning, prototyping, training and development, ideate mode, rapid prototyping, iPhone, Elmo's Monster Maker, ATD

Design Thinking for L&D

Posted by Brandon Carson on Jul 23, 2014 7:42:00 AM

In this series, we’ll discuss the practice of Design Thinking and how you can apply its core principles to your learning and development (L&D) process.

Design Thinking consists of five modes:

  1. Empathize
  2. Define
  3. Ideate
  4. Prototype
  5. Test

These modes aren’t unlike the five phases of the ADDIE (Analysis, Design, Development, Implementation, and Evaluation) process, and as we explore each mode, you’ll find several similarities in the two processes. However, Design Thinking stresses three critical elements that ADDIE doesn't: radical collaboration, iterative design and development, and prototyping and testing. Another component that Design Thinking stresses is taking a more “agile” approach to design. We’ll discuss that a bit as well.

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Topics: training, instructional design, technology, Brandon Carson, ADDIE, prototyping, design thinking, training documents, empathize mode

How to Bring Multiple Media Types Into a Cohesive Experience

Posted by Brandon Carson on May 28, 2014 9:48:00 AM

Continuing our focus on authoring in this series, let’s take a look at – yes, you guessed it – a working model, brought to us by our elders. The good thing is, it’s still a workable model. It’s called ADDIE. I know a lot of us moan and groan about “old-school ADDIE,” but every profession needs a methodology, a way forward. Although what you do when “creating learning” often varies, you waver between three things:

  •          Analysis
  •          Design & Development
  •          Implementation
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Topics: learning and development, instructional design, needs analysis, Brandon Carson, lectora, LMS, multimedia, implementation, ADDIE, prototyping, storyboard, CMS