seeking ideas for showing comparisons

Hi, I have a client in health care who wants to show the difference between two illnesses.  I was given a chart with three columns - Parameter, Illness 1, and Illness 2.  There are six rows.  Here is an example of a couple of rows

Onset  ---  Acute ---- gradual

Duration --- Hours --- years

I am trying to find an engaging or interactive way to present this material.  I would really appreciate any ideas. I am using Studio '09.



9 Replies
El Burgaluva

Hi, Alex

I'm willing to take a crack at this, but first I need to know what the purpose of the information in the three columns is; what are you trying to achieve here?

For example, is it for diagnosing one illness versus the other? Or for treatment?

How will the learners be asked to apply this information in the real world? And what are the potential sticking points or pitfalls to be aware of in relation to these columns of info?


Alex Westin

Thanks, Leslie.  The purpose is diagnosis.  The two illnesses are often confused for one another.  They want people to be able to recognize which it is.  In real life, they will be expected to recognize the illness when the person is admitted to the hospital.  One illness has a high mortality rate while the other doesn't and it often gets misdiagnosed.

Russ Sawchuk

Hi Alex,

We developed this simulation to teach about diagnosing different sinus disorders. It was a lot of work, but the simulation is very popular and effective. You may not want to do that much work, but it will give you some ideas for your application.

Another approach that comes to mind is to create hypothetical patients with different symptoms and use QM to ask a series of questions to assist your learners to make the correct diagnosis.

Best of success with your project.


Karen Loftus

Alex. while a bit unorthodox, how about starting from the end (death) and working backwards?  Since one illness is life-threatening and the other isn't, perhaps differentiating the symptoms and their progressive outcomes might not only point out the differences but also the criticality of a wrong diagnosis.

That said, I did like Russ' simulation concept for your application! -k

Russ Sawchuk


I used Character Builder to create the talking patients. Once I added the audio (prepared by professional narrators), I created a Flash file for each patient response that I imported into Presenter.

When I have some time, I would like to redo the simulation in StoryLine. With Presenter and all the branching, we ended up with over 100 slides. However, using layers in SL, I should be able to accomplish the same thing with fewer slides. Also, StoryLine has some additional interactive capabilities that would be interesting to explore.

Feedback from our users (nurses, nursing students) indicates that they prefer learning games or simulations compared to regular narrated presentations. I prefer to do the narrated presentations because they are a lot simpler to do (and because that is what we have always done). However, if our learners want games and simulations, then I guess that is the direction our future development will take. Thank goodness for StoryLine which makes creating games and simulations much easier.