Modern course designers frame their content to ensure a seamless and purposeful learning experience for their users. In today’s fluid digital learning environment that provides endless scenarios, you have to offer the best learning experience for your course buyers.
Is your content user-centered?
Do you see the learner as a finality when you design your course?
Are you offering an innovative and practical experience?
If your answers are “yes,” then you can call yourself a learning experience designer.
To dive deeper into what a learning experience designer does, we need to understand some key facts, such as experience, learning experience, and learning experience design:
- An experience is any situation in any setting that makes an impression on you;
- A learning experience is any experience you learn from;
- A learning experience design (LXD) is a form of art that enables learners to reach the desired outcomes through personalized learning solutions inspired by instructional design, cognitive psychology, neuroscience, and experiential learning.
Are you a learning experience designer?
To figure out if you fall into the learning experience designer category, you need to know which skills are required.
First of all, LXD has an interdisciplinary approach to learning, so you should be able to communicate and collaborate with specialists in different fields with a constant drive to learn.
Secondly, you have to focus on the users and their learning experience, which requires empathy. Also, you should have practical skills such as being able to convey user research, employ analysis techniques, design wireframes, create a prototype and test it.
You will be required to use your critical thinking and problem-solving skills as well, with an open mindset ready to understand the user and provide the best learning experience possible.
Learning experience designers largely guide themselves after the following principles:
LXD is user-centered
When designing a course, you should inherently consider the learner as its finality. Course design should always focus on the user as the beneficiary of the learning experience and set the ground for reaching the desired outcomes. The learner-centered approach implies a personalized learning experience, a setting open to communication and collaboration, and various interaction opportunities.
When learners receive tailored learning solutions, constant support, peer and instructor feedback, they maintain the inner motivation, engagement and thrive throughout their learning journey.
LXD is inclusive
Since learning occurs online most of the time lately, course designers can reach learners worldwide. The course design must be inclusive and considerate towards every learner’s needs, regardless of their cultural or socio-economic background, cognitive and social skills.
Online courses have to accommodate learner needs and facilitate learning. This requires adequate content that's not offensive or culturally tone-deaf but intuitive and sensitive in design to cater to learners with disabilities and support all learning requirements.
LXD is focused on learning as a journey
Course design nowadays is all about the learner experience. But so is face-to-face learning. To differentiate between the LXD and traditional learning, the focus has to be on the entire process a learner goes through with the course, from the first interaction to the outcome, from the intricacies to the revelations.
This way, learning becomes more than an experience. It's a journey that allows the learner to dive deep into each learning experience and reach the end goal.
LXD is anchored into the real world
Online courses offer learning solutions to people who want to improve their skills, learn new ones, and continue the learning process for their personal or professional development. Nonetheless, these learning experiences will be tested in real life, and this is where learners prove their abilities.
Therefore, content designers need to create relevant courses that learners can benefit from in their careers and lives. These courses also boost their motivation and increase the level of knowledge applicability in their work fields.
LXD is flexible and innovative
Learners need flexibility in terms of content structure and devices. They want to squeeze learning moments into their routines and have bits of information to access daily on any device. This way, they can continue their learning experience and have a feeling of constant progress, which also increases motivation.
Designers also need to approach these courses with creativity and devise an innovative learning experience that speaks to the modern learner. You can provide possibilities for extra information and practice besides the main modules. This benefits learners who want to concentrate on the central aspects of the course and know what is essential. It also helps those who are always eager to learn more and access additional content and assessments if they wish.
The to-do list of a learning experience designer
Now that you have an idea of what experience learning designers know and guide themselves by, let's see what they do in practice:
- Research - they analyze their audience and gather information about potential customers to create personalized learning solutions.
- Create user personas - they go to a stage of experimentation to create user personas and check what type of experience a learner should have.
- Determine the architecture of the course - they go through a state of ideation in which they devise the outline of the course.
- Design user flows and wireframes - they conceptualize the learning journey and determine sequences when learners are in a state of flow. This is crucial for the entire design because it determines whether learners reach the outcomes or retain information.
- Create a prototype - they analyze the data they have obtained in the process so far and create a course prototype.
- Conduct user testing - they test the prototype with real users and check its success. If necessary, they reiterate and retest until they reach their final product.
Learning experience designers have a complex job to do, which humanizes the whole creation process. Designing a course with real learners in mind allows for a realistic approach to the learning experience and facilitates its conversion to real-life applicability.