Feature Focus: Creating Branching Scenarios

Branching scenarios are high impact interactive experiences that have the power to help change behaviours. This immersive design approach requires learners to answer a question and then presents how the specific option they have chosen plays out – which is great for demonstrating how the consequences of selected decisions can affect the bigger picture. This approach makes courses more engaging and also produces better learning results.

In Elucidat you can create a branching scenario path using Rules to hide and reveal pages based on the learner’s answer to a question. There are two types of branching scenarios – shallow (where learners are shown consequences and then put back on the right path) and deep (where each choice takes the learner down a different path).

In this article we’ll explore how the two types of branching scenario design can be achieved in Elucidat.

Contents:

  1. Shallow branching scenario
  2. Deep branching scenario
  3. Further information

   

Shallow branching scenario

In a shallow branching scenario, the learner is shown part of a story and asked to make a choice. This choice dictates which consequence they are shown, before they are put back on the main path of the story. All learners will continue along the same core storyline path - the branching only reveals consequences, rather than taking the storyline in a new direction.

The diagram below shows how this page structure works. 

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Deep branching scenario

A deep branching scenario involves the story continuing to branch with each consequence, creating an immersive simulation experience. They allow learners a chance to put their theoretical learning into practice as a part of their elearning.

The page setup for this approach is more complex, as you can see in the diagram below.

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In this deep branching video scenario (link opens in new tab) learners choose a character and begin following their story.

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The learner watches a video to see the first stage of the character’s story. After watching this, the video pauses and learners are asked to reflect on the situation. They are then put in the hot seat and asked what action they should take to assist the character.

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There are two routes the storyline could go down. A Rule is used to show either consequence A or consequence B depending on the answer the learner gave.

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The learner watches the consequence play out, before being asked to make another choice. The storyline continues to branch with each answer the learner gives along the way.

At the end of the scenario, learners are shown a tailored summary page (also set up using Rules). This recaps how the learner approached the scenario, what happened next following the learner’s final choice, and what other outcomes were possible had they made different decisions.

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By the end, learners have a clear understanding of the impact their choices had on the character. It’s a very effective way to promote behaviour change, allowing the learner to explore the consequences of different choices in the safety of a digital scenario.

Tip: Branching doesn’t have to mean a large module. Adding just one question with branched outcome pages to your course can have a big impact!

 

Further information

  • This support article explains how to use Rules to set up a page to show based on an answer a learner gives to a particular question. (See the section of the article titled Set a page to only display if the Learner has submitted a certain answer on another page).

  • For more detailed tips and examples take a look at our blog post: how to create a brilliant branching scenario
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