Five Tips for eLearning Storyboards

In the 1930s, a Disney animator called Webb Smith did something which has a surprising impact on the world of educational technology today. He started to doodle sequential scenes for a new cartoon and pin them up on the walls of his office, instead of describing the plot with words. The story goes that this was the beginning of the storyboard, a way of planning cartoons which allowed the Walt Disney studio to create works with greater visual and storytelling complexity. Today’s feature animations are planned in a similar way.

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Elearning developers are faced with many similar challenges and therefore use a variation on this technique. Good elearning should have a plot or structure, just like cartoons, which needs to be refined.  By placing events in a different order and experimenting you do not get caught in the fine details of design or programming. In effect, the storyboard is a first draft which is relatively quick to create and to edit.

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