As an instructional designer, storyboarding new courses/materials is very important. As a busy professional myself, I loathe it when someone imposes an administrative process on me that seems burdensome. So I try to get the conversation regarding the new course going for a fair while before talking about storyboarding.

Almost every organization I’ve worked in uses templates of some sort. Templates are designed to help get things moving, support folks a bit confused, and imbue consistency between projects. Most of my course authors aren’t educationalists–most, in fact, have no training in teaching. So if I want to use a template, it has to be one that will be easily uptaken, is user friendly, and is flexible.

So I use PowerPoint. PowerPoint (along with Word) is an ubiquitous tool in higher education: every single one of my course authors is familiar with it and pretty much all of them currently use it. Unlike Word, PowerPoint works using a graphic  (slide view) or text based (slide/outline view) interface. It’s easy to move things around in it as well: just drag slides around and reposition them. Ditto adding detail as the course is built out: insert new slides to drill down a level or two.

Storyboarding is important; at some point it’s important to move towards course building and leaving it behind. But it’s always good to have it on hand to refer as needed. But the course is the thing, not the storyboard…

About John P Egan

Learning technology professional.
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