Top ten tips for reviewing a storyboard

A storyboard review stage is crucial as it’s hard to be objective when you’re the one who’s written the content. Here are our top ten questions to ask yourself if you’re the one reviewing someone else’s storyboard.

1. Are the basics in place?

Before you even start reviewing the content of a course, check the obvious (but easy to miss) things like headers and footers, dates and page numbers. Are these clear and consistent throughout?

2. Does the format support the right focus?

Our instructional designers storyboard in Microsoft Word which places a valuable emphasis on the most important aspect of any e-learning course – the text content. This enables reviewers to focus on the words without distraction.

3. Is it reader-friendly?

The layout of a storyboard can either help or hinder a review. Notes should inform you of what to focus on along with clear instructions explaining each screen. Requests for further information should also be clear and prominent.

4. Does it answer the learner’s questions?

Review the storyboard as if you’re the learner – what do you already know about the subject and what are you hoping this training will enable you to do? During the review, check if your questions are being answered and if not, why not?

5. Are you convinced?

It’s often very obvious if the storyboard author hasn’t completely understood the business need and subject matter. Can you spot any gaps in information, or any sections that raise more questions than they answer?

6. Does it fit in with the company’s culture?

Many companies have a particular identity and tone of voice. The learner is much more likely to be engaged and alter their behaviour if the course reflects this, and if it’s written in plain English with a conversational tone.

7. Are you actively involved – in the right things?

All good training is interactive – most people will switch off if they’re just reading, or listening, not actually doing anything. Are you being actively included in the most valuable learning points and are these conveyed effectively?

8. Can you transfer the learning to real life?

The best way to change behaviour is to use scenarios that put the learner in a realistic situation. Are they being asked to make a decision, identify a problem or suggest a solution? If so, then they’ll be able to do the right thing in real life.

9. Do you always know where you are?

A logical and clear structure will help the content flow, which will naturally aid the learner’s understanding. As you review the training, bear this in mind and identify any areas where you think better signposting could be used.

10. Are you being made to think for yourself?

Telling someone something and testing them on it afterwards tests memory, not understanding. Does the training that you’re reviewing ask the learner to think for themselves and draw on their own experiences to reach the right answer?

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Top ten tips for reviewing a storyboard

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About the author

Kim George - Instructional Designer

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  • Lisa Kammerlocher

    Hi Kim:
    I really like your list of questions to ask yourself when storyboarding. Would you mind if I adapted it for some training I am doing with colleagues here at Arizona State University Libraries. Storyboarding is one of the more intimidating aspects of screencasting or my colleagues. We usually have a lot of peer review around the process but these questions would help the original author with some self evaluation.
    Thanks, Lisa Kammerlocher, ASU Libraries

  • Wow, I think what you mentioned earlier is very true. Displays what I am experiencing.

  • Kim

    Hi Lisa,

    Thanks for your message! Apologies for not replying sooner – I’ve been on holiday for the last couple of weeks, to the States in fact!

    I’m pleased you like my top tips and am happy for you to adapt them for your training. I agree – storyboarding can be daunting and there’s always a lot to think about, both when writing and reviewing them.

    I hope you and your colleagues find these top tips useful and I’d be interested to hear about any feedback or results!

    Feel free to email me at: kim@saffroninteractive.com