Story-Based Learning: Which Storytelling Strategy To Choose?

The biggest challenge that the instructional designers face while developing eLearning content is to keep learners engaged and immersed in the course, while facilitating and ensuring a successful knowledge transfer. Story-based learning is a fine way to do it. Story-based learning encourages and motivates learners. It is engaging, easy to recollect, and appeals to learners of all profiles.

Here are a few storytelling strategies that you can choose to make your e-learning module fun.

Keep it real with real-life stories:  

Stories included in your e-learning course don’t always need to be imaginary. In e-learning courses on compliance training or health and safety training, we often quote real-life incidents. Let us assume you are imparting online training on data protection and privacy, as a part of the compliance educational program. If you merely provide instructions on why learners should follow data protection rules and regulations, it will not have the potential to grab the learners’ attention. Try a story-based strategy that cites real-life incidents and you will be ready to connect with learners instantly.

Make learning fun with illustrated stories:

The comic strip can be used to include graphics and pictures as this may bring much-needed relief during a content-heavy training or educational program, yet manage to convey the message effectively. Illustrations are often made use of to simplify a complex learning concept. For example, charts, figures or tree diagrams make it easier for learners to know and also recollect an idea or a concept. Online training programs on sales, marketing, or soft skills can employ illustrations as a storytelling strategy. Illustrations are often accompanied by audio for a stronger impact.

Boost interactivity with game-based stories:

Game-based storytelling is sort of complex, as stories are woven into a game. Games will have rules, goals, and different levels. A story will offer a backdrop for the game and take the learner through various levels. This strategy in your story-based online learning program will take the level of interactivity  higher. Game-based storytelling can be effectively used when you want to develop skills, improve problem-solving, inculcate risk-taking, and train on risk assessment. You can use this approach in an online leadership training program as well.

Engage learners with animated stories:

Animated stories offer an upscale and powerful way to tackle real-world conflicts and explain complex topics. Complicated topics are often clarified with a combination of images, audio, text, and animated story. Animations can be used to focus training on specific information or provide training reinforcement. That is why animated stories are an effective strategy to use in microlearning, where you would like to deliver bite-sized modules focused on one learning objective. Since animated stories make learning engaging and interactive, they work well for different kinds of coaching programs and are quite common in new hire onboarding, soft skills training or coaching, and employee development programs.

Deliver inspirational training with open-ended stories:

If you want a more collaborative or reactive approach to your story-based online learning program, try open-ended stories. Open-ended stories will produce a setting, narrate a plot, however, the ending is left open. An interactive assessment follows the story, and learners’ responses are evaluated. This promotes a collaborative learning experience.

Open-ended stories are a strong influencing tool and may be utilized in a blended learning environment for topics like leadership training. The beginning and the body of the story ought to be compelling enough, only then will learners be involved in analyzing how the story will end. Open-ended stories instill curiosity and motivate learners to stay the stay. It not only delivers an enticing learning experience but also gauges learners’ understanding of the training content.


To present heavy content in a refreshing and interesting fashion, a story-based online learning program is used. The art of storytelling has been utilized in learning for centuries and is additionally applicable to online learning too. Different types of storytelling strategies are meticulously used according to the training content.

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