Developing a course that compares old and new features

Hello - I have been tasked to develop a course that compares old functionality and screens to new functionality and screens.  The learners are migrating to a new application, and the stakeholder feels that the learners could benefit from this approach.  I need some inspiration.  Has anyone worked on a project like this?  Can anyone point me to any courses in downloads or challenges that use a similar strategy?

Thanks! :)



6 Replies
Tom Kuhlmann

I am sure others will chime in with some ideas. Personally, I'd push back a little on comparing old to new.

  • New learners don't know the old system, so that introduces content that is irrelevant to them and potentially some confusion.
  • Tenured learners already know the old, so it's also probably irrelevant. What you want them to do is the new, so that's where I'd put the energy and attention.


Tom Kuhlmann

Yeah, I hear you on that. :)

You could create a simple screen capture with labels for the old way and have it on a layer. Or do the same with a quick screencast..."here's how to do it the old way." And just add a button to view it.

I wouldn't put much more effort into it than that as it offers no real value. But as you noted, sometimes the client wants what they want. :)

Judy Nollet

For its longer-term usefulness, I agree that the training should only focus on the current process. As Tom pointed out, new users don't need to know how things used to be. That excess info just increases their cognitive load, confusion, and consternation. 

However, depending on the type of changes, it might be useful to provide a "delta" course that explains the changes--ideally in a way that motivates long-term users to adapt. Perhaps present a scenario that highlights the benefits of the upgrade. (assuming there are benefits ;-) But s uch a course should only be for existing users who have to make the switch.