How to make a software simulation "pretty"?

Hey all. I'm working on a learning object that has hundreds of screenshots with hotspots that a user must click through to pass a quiz. The screenshots are all of a software package made by my company. Right now, I'm having each screenshot fill up the entire stage area, but it just seems to be lacking "pizzazz".

Any ideas on how I can make it more interesting? Maybe by not filling up the entire stage are with the screenshot?

Thanks for your ideas.

1 Reply
Bob S

Hi Jim,

Did you say "hundreds" of hotspots to click to pass the quiz? Not sure how complicated your software is, but perhaps a re-think on the ID might be in order...

I'm guessing that hundreds of screenshots means you are teaching all tasks/functions at once; instead of just the most critical ones?  That would be my first suggestion... teach them in depth on the most common/critical functions and relegate the other scenarios to reference/job-aid status.   Afterall... if it's something the are only going to do a couple of times a year back on the job, then they are going to forget that training piece anyways and will want to look at a handy job-aid when they need it.

Second, break up the course into smaller modules, grouped by function or grouped by role depending on which relates better to your users actual situation.  These smaller modules will allow you to put other activities and information in more often to offer some variety for different learning styles. Interviews with users, tips from the expert, did-you-knows, you-try-its and more all become easier to incorporate when you break things into modules.

Finally, consider varying the sequencing of learning events.... especially in later modules. Instead of diving right into all the screenshots (again), try mixing it up by presenting them a chance to apply what they know and predict how the function they are about to learn about will be the same or different from others they've mastered. Provide feedback on their guesses and then show just what's different from the other processes.... not all the repeated steps.

Lots of other good ideas out there for system training, but hope these get you started thinking. Good luck!