Why scripts are important when recording training
April 8, 2021
What are Scripts?
Scripts are a common element of film and TV production. They explain the actions, events and dialogue that will occur during the course of a scene, so the cast and crew know what, how and when to do things.
In Training Development a script is similar in form, as it usually contains a written flow of what is said and done over the course of a training presentation. This gives the presenters instructions on how to convey the information being taught, and provides those working behind the scenes with an understanding of how things should play out so they can create the content accordingly.
Sometimes, a script may be expanded into a storyboard, which provides a more visual representation of how things will unfold. This might be useful if you are recording a live action or animated video for your training that contains multiple complex elements.
Why are Scripts important in Training Development?
Just as movie-goers can find it difficult to follow a movie plot when it seems to arbitrarily skip all over the place, so too can learners find it challenging to understand training when it doesn’t follow a discernable flow.
Scripts are important because they establish what’s going to happen, how it will occur, and in what order. It helps everyone get on the same page so that speakers and trainers know when and how to present the material, while instructional designers and supporting team members can update other assets to ensure animations, videos, graphics or other supporting elements occur as expected.
Without a script, it’s often difficult to communicate your vision for the training to others. This results in presenters needing to improvise some or all of the dialogue within presentations, designers being unsure about how exactly to flesh out scenes to match the vision, and learners being confused by the lack of cohesion within the training itself.
Benefits of Writing a Script
Creating a script can make things easier for your training development team and learners. Below are a few major benefits of creating a script for your training.
- Helps presenters understand the flow of content and deliver it in a standardized manner
- Provides clear instructions to all actors and presenters about what they’re supposed to be doing at any given time
- Increases the chances that the content will be delivered as desired and expected
- Provides context to what is happening behind the scenes of the training so team members get the information they require to do their job
Best practices for script writing
As with the training itself, there isn’t a one-size-fits-all method to creating a script. Although there are some standards that we recommend adhering to, it can be as much of an art as a science. Below are some best practices we find very useful when creating scripts for use in training development.
Tie your script into your learning objectives to ensure they are being met
Training development is so strongly tied to learning objectives that it’s not a surprise that you’d want your script (which is explaining what is happening in the training) to be tied into the learning objectives as well.
We recommend solidifying your learning objectives first and then finding a way to connect the sections of your script into it rather than trying to adapt the learning objectives to fit the script.
Evaluate the length of your script
We can often get carried away with wanting to write a fun and interesting story, while also adding in all the details needed for the script to make sense to all involved, that before we know it, we’ve written a novel.
While having a details can be helpful, we recommend shortening the script to only the essentials to make it quicker and easier to read. This holds doubly so for eLearning, as “… online learners are less likely to remember the key takeaways when they are in audio form.”
Review your script with presenters to ensure they understand your vision
A script may look concise, detailed and straightforward to the writer, but may still confuse readers who need to understand it for different reasons.
This is why we recommend reviewing your script with your team during the creation process, as well as when it’s being finalized, so that there is ample time to fill in any gaps or correct any inconsistencies that may arise.
Use a consistent, professional-sounding tone throughout
Speaking of consistency, we cannot emphasize enough how important establishing a tone and sticking to that tone is for script-writing. Because scripts are words on a page, it can often be difficult to understand the subtle nuances behind the words unless they is explained.
If you don’t establish a specific, understandable tone in the script, you risk the training itself becoming disjointed and confusing to learners.
Use easy to understand language
Training Development happens across many industries, some of which use complex language layered with jargon. This may be tempting to incorporate into the training to assist with comprehension, but we recommend writing the script in simple, easy to understand language while avoiding jargon. This helps ensure that the training will be understood by learners across all skill levels.
Have someone else read your script
Sometimes we get so deep into our own work that it’s hard to be able to step back and review what we’ve designed in an objective manner. This where having a team member look over what you’ve done can be invaluable. A fresh set of eyes might catch something you overlooked due to being so deeply involved with the script.
Positive Results™ is a training development and cloud services company that works with organizations to analyze their business processes and implement training and cloud solutions to solve for any gaps we find.
We believe script writing is an important element of training design because it helps ensure the desired elements all come together in a way that everyone should understand. It seems simple, but when everyone is on the same page, work gets done more efficiently, learners learn better and your company saves time and money.
If you have additional questions or need support, contact us at:
Positive Results™ Custom Business Solutions