Written by Josh Cardoz, Principal Learning Strategist at SwissVBS. The original essay appears in Training Industry and can be accessed here.
Creativity is the key to good instructional design. When learners experience something creative and interesting, it makes them pay attention and absorb what we are trying to teach them. Because of this, learning experiences should avoid straightforward “telling” whenever possible and focus instead on “showing,” using whatever creative resources are available....
How many phone numbers do you know by memory? Five? Six? If you count the phone numbers of relatives you memorized as a child, maybe as many as 10?
Before my life as an instructional designer, I spent years in the classroom as a college and university professor. There are some things about it I will never miss: the irregular hours, which can be crazy-making; the first-year students, whose attitudes range from Tracy-Flick-enthusiastic to Jeff-Spicoli-jaded; and the marking, which tends to pile up like psychic scar tissue on an otherwise-healthy brain.
Here at SwissVBS, we take pride in many things: our talented team of designers, writers, and programmers; our commitment to customer-driven learning; our obsessive attention to detail.
But if you were to ask our employees what accomplishment they’re most proud of, one answer would probably come up again and again: “My ping pong game.”