How To Effectively Use Branched Learning Scenarios

Branched learning scenarios, also known as branching logic, enables L&D professionals to control users’ individualized paths based on their previous answers in a learning course or survey.

Our team of instructional designers has put together four tips to help your organization succeed with branched learning scenarios:

  • Visualize The Final Destination
  • Keep An Organized Wireframe
  • Don’t Overwhelm Your Learners
  • Devote Extra Time To Q&A

All trainers know the hopeless feeling that comes from standing in front of 30 bored learners, trying to explain a company process and why it’s so critical to the learners’ jobs and success. The learners may feign interest to be polite, but they clearly aren’t absorbing the message or engaging with the content.

They are one of the best ways to convert your process-heavy training – whether instructor-led or click and read – to an interactive and impactful experience for learners. By allowing your learners to make choices throughout the course, they create their own learning experience. They’ll take ownership of the material by making decisions that result in meaningful feedback and consequences.

In this article, we cover what branched learning is, then explore 4 tips for how to make your branched learning scenarios in eLearning as effective as possible. 


What Is Branched Learning In eLearning?

Branched learning scenarios, also known as branching logic, enables L&D professionals to control users’ individualized paths based on their previous answers in a learning course or survey. Branching logic customizes each user’s experience when completing a survey or learning course through relevant questions.

With branching logic, the user has a customized path that continues to branch out until they reach their final question. Depending on the survey or course, this final destination may be different for each user.


Benefits Of Branched Learning

  • Personalized learning paths — Branching logic leads users down a path of questions that are personalized. Subsequent questions are presented to users in response to their previous answer, therefore creating individual learning paths for each user.
  • man working on computer laptopReduces completion time — With branching logic, users only answer relevant questions, which likely reduces the number of questions they must answer. This typically yields a faster completion time and reduces the number of users who drop out.
  • Intuitive questioning — Branching logic makes users feel like their survey is custom to them through intuitive questioning. This generally makes more sense as users won’t be asked irrelevant questions that waste their time. For example, if a user answers “No” to “Are you a cashier?”, they won’t be asked questions about operating the POS system because it isn’t their responsibility.


4 Tips To Succeed With Branched Learning

1. Visualize The Final Destination

Picture the course as a game with multiple paths leading to a destination. Before you begin to chart different learning paths within a scenario, visualize where you want your learners to end their learning journey. Starting at the end and working backward can help you to make sure you build in all the appropriate paths and scenarios.

Read More: Cost Of A Custom Corporate eLearning Program [2021]


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2. Keep An Organized Wireframe

Men typing on computer keyboard. Businessman using laptop in the officeJust like mapping out a storyboard, you’ll thank yourself if you first map out the various learning paths that your learner can travel. Focus on choices and consequences. Clearly map when learners will encounter interactions, what choices they’ll have in that interaction, and what consequences will occur for each choice.

When creating your “wrong turns”, consider the common mistakes your learners make in the workplace that prevent them from achieving your desired action. That way, they’ll learn to avoid repeating those mistakes when it counts.


3. Don’t Overwhelm Your Learners

Our designers suggest a maximum of three paths per scenario. Your learners will still feel like they have control over the course, but you’ll save yourself hours in quality assurance (QA) and can gather tailored data about the learner’s confidence and knowledge.


4. Devote Extra Time To Q&A

Branched learning requires more QA time than more standard forms of eLearning. Your QA team will need to walk through each learning path within the scenario to make sure that your triggers are working correctly and that your learner always reaches the same destination, no matter which path he or she chooses.

Read More: Pros And Cons Of Corporate eLearning


Are You Ready To Get Started With Branching Scenarios In eLearning?

Our creative designers can help you to conceptualize and design a custom branched learning course to increase learner engagement and provide additional data points for your ROI. Get started with your branched learning scenarios in eLearning or visit our website for more resources today!


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