Software Simulations - Template or No Template?

Hi all,

Is it a good practice to use a template for software simulations so that all software simulations at a company have the same look, feel, and behaviors?

We are currently starting to build software simulations and currently they are left to our own design and each designer has their own style.  But I noticed through taking software simulation courses through other companies (Articulate, Cornerstone, etc...) they all have a similar feel in how they function.  And for this reason, I suggested that before we start building many software simulation type courses at our company, I wanted to present the idea of creating a template for software simulations - and wanted to get your thoughts.

Thanks for any advice or comments,

Dana

2 Replies
Judy Nollet

Think about it this way: Would you like it if the software itself was different every time you used it? Probably not. I'd say that, at the least, all simulations about a given software package should have the same look and feel. In short, if there's a standard, simple-to-use interface for all the simulations, the users can concentrate on learning the lessons about the software -- without wasting brain power trying to figure out why one sim is different from another.

Natalia Mueller

A previous team I worked on had a good system which was basically a template. We had intro/outro slides we all used. Then everything else we wanted consistent was included in a style guide that was housed in a source file we all used to begin new projects. This included transition animations, mouse visibility, all callout details (shape, size, color) and the circumstances to use each type, etc.  That was a convenient method because the source file also had all of the publish settings saved. Once the module was finished we would just delete the slide containing the standards list and examples. There were still some minor variations between developers but keeping the core elements consistent gave the videos the cohesive look and feel we were going for.

Side note- all of the developers decided on the standards together. It seemed a little tedious at the time but it ultimately helped get everyone on board.