Learning Strategy

A couple days ago, I was thinking of my approach to interactive strategies in regards to online learning games and how I can try to simplify it for those not aware of the area.

I came up with:

  • Anything that you can teach by using any method, you can teach by using training games.
  • Training games should be designed rapidly and inexpensively.
  • Training games engage the learners and produce effective results.

So sat down and analysed these three statements: Anything that you can teach by using any method, you can teach by using training games. Many people disagree with this statement by immediately proclaiming, “You can’t teach my subject by using a game. It’s too serious for that!” These statements are the result of confusing games with fun activities that are mindless and irrelevant. If instructional designers like me adopt a broader definition of games as structured interactions, this objection becomes invalid. Several games deal with serious topics. None of them is fun, and all of them are highly engaging. War games, for example, provide an effective strategy for exploring serious principles and procedures. Another thing people would say are “People in my group are different. They don’t like to play games.” As you all know, I have facilitated games with people from different backgrounds around the world. I have played games with children and adults, with blue-collar workers and corporate CEOs and even sheep farmers. My experience shows that as long as we approach our participants with respect and facilitate a game that is relevant to their needs, there is seldom any resistance. Obviously, we should not be violating norms and should make appropriate adjustments to our language (such as not calling the activity a game) in order to use a game effectively with different groups. One more thing I have heard a lot is, “We don’t have time to play games. We have too many topics to cover.” I believe that this reflects confusion between presenting information and achieving training objectives. I do not want to rant too much but those statements really get up my goat. There is plenty of time for games as for the too many topics to cover, thats just poor information architecture and structure.

Published by theirishduck

I love the ability where I can plan, prioritise, design, develop and deliver blended learning solutions for a variety of markets. I love to consult and advise about the best use of digital learning and improve design standards in line with evolving ways of working. I also enjoy to keep up to date with, understand and regularly recommend emerging technologies and practice to improve individuals, teams and organisational capabilities. With over 12 years digital learning experience and demonstrated experience in both instructional design and eLearning development, I have also a lot of experience conducting training needs analysis including how to leverage principles such as design thinking and root cause analysis to understand and address performance gaps. I also have led many facilitation workshops and even presented at iDesignX and Game Developers Conferences both here in Australia, Wales and in the United States. I bring loads of coding experience in Java, ASM, C++, HTML, JavaScript, SCORM and xAPI, as well as proven capability using Adobe Captivate, Trivantis Lectora and Articulate Storyline 360 Studio authoring programs. Of course, Adobe Creative Cloud is also part of my toolbox which I also use daily. Being taught traditional and advanced 3D animation techniques, I love hand drawing and polymer clay sculpture, but can also use the Blender, 3D Studio Max, Maya and Softimage applications. With strong multimedia, training and programming backgrounds, I understand modern learner behaviour including micro and social learning, I am very familiar with most LMSes and app-based (XCode and Android Studio), adult learning models and e-solutions. I also possess the ability to manage multiple projects simultaneously, whilst being pro-active in delivering work independently with minimal supervision, but enjoy working in teams. I've been told I am a resilient, relationship focused guy which can manage and navigate conflicting views and stakeholders/subject matter experts.

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