One of the roles I get to take on at Pluralsight is being a technical content reviewer for other people's courses. This is a great way for me to help other authors make better courses and also helps me identify common pitfalls new authors fall into. I often learn a lot from my peer reviewers too!

Here's an issue I've spotted a few times now: often, in a course or training module, a complex technical topic is explained using a simpler analogy or example to reinforce learning for the viewer.

Authors often leave up the definition or citation for reference as they talk through the example. This makes for a good 20+ seconds of nothing happening visually. It's a mistake because this is prime attention real estate!

After an explanation, if you catch yourself saying things like...

  • "Think of it this way..."
  • "Here's a simpler analogy for you..."
  • "Here's another way to think about this..."
  • "Let me give you an example..."
  • "In other words..."
  • "But what does this actually mean?"

These are all "transition" phrases that should trigger a change in visuals for whatever you're explaining.

Don't leave a static definition slide or an explanation up throughout the whole explanation. Instead, turn your analogy or example into a more dynamic animated visual.

It'll keep people's attention and make it more memorable (because people will remember the example better than the rote definition as they associate the words you speak with the visuals).

Have a lovely day,

PS. My newest course, Building a JavaScript Development Environment, was just released. If you're ever tasked with working on a JavaScript project, you might find it helpful!

Think of it this way...

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