Creating Passionate Users is becoming one of my favorite blogs, and today’s post “Crash Course in Learning Theory” really just blew me away. The best part? Basically she equates blogging with learning. Read the whole thing, but here are the highlights:

  • Talk to the brain first, mind second.
  • Learning is not a one-way “push” model.
  • Provide a meaningful benefit for each topic, in the form of “why you should care about this” scenario.
  • Use visuals!
  • Use redundancy to increase understanding and retention.
  • The more senses you engage, the greater the potential for retention and recall.
  • Maintain interest with variety and surprise.
  • Use conversational language.
  • Use the filmaker (and novelist) principle of SHOW-don’t-TELL.
  • Use “chunking” to reduce cognitive overhead.
  • Since stress/anxiety can reduce focus and memory, do everything possible to make the learner feel relaxed and confident.
  • Use seduction, charm, mystery to build curiosity.
  • Use a spiral model to keep users engaged.

  • Don’t rob the learner of the opportunity to think!
  • Use the 80/20 principle to reduce cognitive overload.
  • Context matters.
  • Emotion matters!
  • Never underestimate the power of FUN to keep people engaged.
  • Use stories.
  • Use pacing and vary the parts of the brain you’re exercising.
  • Remember, it’s never about you. It’s about how the learner feels about himself as a result of the learning experience.

    Really good stuff that I’ll be mulling over as I blog…