One of the most painful lessons I’ve learned as an instructional designer is that what I envision and what my boss or client expect are often very different.
I think we’re on the same page in an initial meeting….
Then I go back to my desk, close myself off to the world and build what I think is a super-awesome course.
I bring it out for some feedback after dozens of hours of work…
They make substantial change requests about the design or functionality that, while seemingly simple, would require many hours to implement.
I’ve gotten smarter in my old age (ok- I only have a few gray hairs, but I’m sure they were all caused by reworking elearning courses). Now I try to whip out a semi-functional prototype within a few hours and go back right away to stakeholders for feedback.
Download the Free eLearning Rapid Prototype Template
I created the template below in PowerPoint that allows you to do quick mockups, kind of like how web designers use wireframes.
What it’s good for
I really like using this for:
- Building quick scenarios where characters are interacting with each other or the user. And I also like having my characters as silhouettes. I can’t tell you how many times meetings about mockups get turned into hour long arguments about the character I chose for the mockup.
- Mocking up interactions that involve buttons, whitespace, etc
Using Your Rapid Prototyping Template
Using the template is really easy. There are instructions on the first slide. I’ve also created a quick video showing how to use it.
Build your own template for different needs
The type of training that you build might be a different style that what this template can produce, but what I hope you take away is that mockups can be built very quickly. My suggestion to you is to build it in PowerPoint for the following reasons
- PPT design tools are easy to use
- Slide masters let you quickly change out backgrounds
- Most of the stakeholders also have the PowerPoint
- It’s already set up for presenting on a monitor or projector
- There is no publishing time, just put it in slideshow mode
I hope you enjoyed the free template and post. You should also check out how I also use eLearning storyboards and eLearning style guides to stay on the same page with stakeholders and avoid rework during the eLearning development process.