It’s May 2010. I’m on my way home from my first business trip to the US. I carry something very special in my bag. This box has some magnetic attraction on me and I feel this burning desire. I can’t wait to be seated in the airplane so I can open it. So, at cruising altitude, I open the box and carefully take out what was inside. I switch on the device and after a few simple setup actions, it came alive. Hello iPad!
For the following days, I kept downloading apps and discovered the simple and easy way to make beautiful screenshots— very useful functionality. I also downloaded the app ‘Pocket Pond’: goldfish swimming ‘in’ your device. I could feed them or touch the water so they could nibble my finger tip (or scare them if I was too quick). It offered a beautiful, new experience (but besides that, the app is kind of useless unless you have cats).
Apple has changed the user experience with its products; and that’s how ‘user experience design’ became popular. It also pushed the bars of what consumers expect from products and (online) services: they all expect a ‘great user experience’ today. So, how about learners? They are no different: they also expect, or at least hope, that their learning is a good, or even a great, experience. Some learning designers understood the phenomena of new learner expectations at an early stage and, with that, Learner Experience Design (LXD) was born.
How do you design learning that is very useful and offers a good learner experience? Let me know if you have the answer. In the meantime, I hope this edition of the Learning Notes will inspire and help you to create great LXD.