RSI and Instructional Design

Jan 27, 2015


I am currently working on an e-learning program with an SME who is only experienced in the world of traditional instructor led training. The linear content I have received is rather tedious to get through and in an effort to make it more meaningful and engaging I incorporated the RSI model as part of the instructional design. Unfortunately, the SME is having a hard time buying into the model. He said that he didn't like it because he thought he was being "quizzed" before being primed with any information. I countered by saying the RSI model gives learners the opportunity to challenge their current assumptions of the content while also practicing it in a safe environment. Further, I stated that user's RSI scores are not recorded within the LMS and that it doesn't really matter if they get the right answer or not because we are giving them the correct information through feedback. 

I'm not sure what else I can say. Has anyone had to overcome a resistant SME? How did you handle it? Does anyone have any easy to understand resources I can share with the SME to help convey the benefit of interactivity and creating meaningful interactions. 

Thanks in advance.


2 Replies
Julie Stelter

Hi David, Kudos to you for pushing your SMEs to try new things. You might be able to get more buy-in if you show the RSI model demo to the SME. In addition, you could mock-up 2 courses, one using the RSI model and one using the linear method and test within a focus group to get feedback.

I have run into this a lot about "testing" adults before you give them content. They are adults though with lots of previous knowledge that needs to be acknowledged in order to create meaningful learning. Help the SME shift the focus away from him/herself to the learner.

Cheers, Julie

David Anderson

Hi David -

That example of the RSI does look a lot like a quiz. Tom and I've discussed updating it so it feels much less like a quiz since that was the original intention for the RSI.

Here are a few more examples from different industries that might also help you make the case. Keep in mind that the RSI model has existed for a long time—Tom just categorized it as RSI to make it easier to remember.

Who Pooped at the Farm

Building a Sod House

The Garbage Game

The Garbage Game


The Quake Quiz


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