Are you stumped on how to create engaging, informative e-learning videos? You’re not alone. Although e-learning is now the number 1 area of corporate learning and development spending, writing a script can be daunting.
Here are some tips and tricks to help you create the most engaging script that will ensure learner understanding and retention.
Getting startedWhat kind of script will you write? Before you begin, make sure you clearly define the video’s audience, learning objectives, style, format, and tone. You should also define how long your video will run; this will provide you and your team with an idea of the project’s scope. You can use this free online script timer to cut and paste your script and generate the estimated script length. You can also download a free generated narration of your script and choose from several voices.
Script #1: The step-by-step guideMany videos will serve the same purpose—to teach employees how to do something new. A step-by-step guide explaining this process is most often the best format for these types of videos.
When writing a step-by-step guide, remember to rely on linking words. This will help employees understand how each step in the process is connected, as well as when the instruction has stopped talking about one step and moved on to another. Consider using these words in your script:
- First/firstly, second/secondly, third/thirdly, etc.
- Next, last, finally
- In addition, moreover
- In conclusion
- To summarize
Step-by-step processes are often used to train employees on how to use new machines or technology. They also can be used to show how to prepare documentation. When preparing these scripts, keep in mind that adult learners often need motivation prior to learning. Make sure your script covers why this process is important, and how the employee will benefit from learning about it.
Script #2: The thought-provoking, transformative scriptSometimes, training videos have the unique challenge of presenting transformative information that will lead to a “lightbulb” moment. These scripts are exciting but exceptionally challenging because the goal is to change or open the minds of the viewer.
Companies often rely on this style of video when they are trying to change corporate culture, which in itself is a challenge. When creating these videos, consider the following:
- Identify the key issue. What crisis are you solving, or what dilemma are you facing? Sometimes, the script must establish that there is an issue at all. This means the script must identify the issue and prove why it is, indeed, something worth not only mentioning in the video but paying close attention to by the viewer.
- Establish motivation. Make sure the script is able to answer the questions: Why is this issue something that affects the viewer? and How will the viewer benefit from a change? There must be a payoff for the viewer in order for them to truly engage in the learning material.
- Help them think critically. Do not just “show and tell” to your viewer; this may come across as your organization standing on a soapbox. Instead, write a script that invites your viewers—the employees—to think critically about the situation at hand and develop their own opinions about ways to take action.
Script #3: The applied learning scriptThere is some truth to the old adage about teaching a person to fish. Indeed, applied learning is one of the best ways to teach others. You can use applied learning in your corporate e-learning scripts by first speaking to the experiences of your viewers. When viewers are able to draw upon their own expertise and experience, they better relate to and engage with the material.
When creating these videos, consider the following:
- Simulations of real-life experiences speak to the experiences of the audience and will help them engage and create emotional responses to the material. How can you incorporate this into your script?
- Reflection is key for adult learners. How can your script give viewers an opportunity to watch something happen (such as a simulation) and then analyze what they see to draw their own conclusions?
- Make the abstract a reality. How can your script make an abstract concept something that is applicable to real-world experience? Make sure to always provide relevance for any concept or idea your video is trying to teach.
The bottom lineWhen designing your script, keep in mind that motivation is a key factor in adult learning, and make sure you develop a script that instills a willingness to learn in each viewer. There are many ways to do this, and you’ve just learned about three tried-and-true methodologies. Regardless of the style your script takes on, you will need to make sure that it fits within the time frame you have allotted. Use online script timers to ensure your script sticks to the time frame and that developers keep your project on track.