Let’s Go Storyboarding

Once upon a time… from the time we are little, we are taught through stories. Even though our training storyboards might not be filled with princesses, knights in shining armor, and a dragon or two, our storyboards do still have the elements of storytelling. This is where all of the foundational planning and gathering of information from SMEs takes shape and learning is created. As we continue the Back-to-Basics series, let’s explore the time-honored skill of creating storyboards. So, how do you start storyboarding? (Yes, we are making it a verb!)


As a visual representation of all the elements that will be part of your training, the storyboard organizes and outlines the narration, on-screen content, and developer notes for the training.  It contains all of the following elements:

  • Learning Objectives
  • Narration 
  • Graphics
  • Interactivity ideas

The learning objectives come directly from the High Impact Learning Map (HILM) that you created as the foundation of the training.  Everything builds from this.  Remember the “Do” column from the High Impact Learning Map in our Creating a Solid Training Foundation blog?  That is the learning objective.  

The narration provides the details and context, bringing the learning objectives to life.  In the narration, you can leverage the information, facts, figures, and details from the subject matter experts (SMEs).  This is where you put on your creative writing hat and create a flow of learning that participants can follow and retain!  

The key to writing the narration is… be ready to rewrite and rewrite, again and again.  You have a lot of information to absorb, understand, and ultimately help others understand.  Where do you begin?  Start with the learning objectives.  Build your story around what the learners need to know to achieve each of the learning objectives.  Add an impactful introduction to each section explaining to your adult learners why this information is important to them.  Don’t forget to read your narration aloud for flow and understanding. 

Graphics help the learners grasp and remember the information.  Remember the old saying, a picture is worth a thousand words?  Well, a graphic might be worth even more to your learners!  Find interesting graphics, animations, and/or videos that not only keep your learners captivated, but also explain and reinforce your messages.  

Interactivity helps keep the learners engaged in the topic and increases knowledge retention.  This is especially helpful when you have a lot of information or facts to share, as interactivity is a great way to group information into smaller, easier-to-understand pieces. 

Reviewing the storyboard with the SMEs is another opportunity to refine and align the training before you begin development.  Once your storyboard is complete, you are ready to begin development of the training asset!

Narration ScriptOnscreen ContentDeveloper Notes
Module Introduction Graphic Company Logo
Welcome. In this module, we will….Learning Objectives:
Appear one by one.
This information is critical to your role because…Click on each photo to reveal text.
Our company has dedicated people ready to help you with any issue that may arise….•Technical Assistance
•Customer Issues
•Delivery Problems
Appear one by one with icons.
Let’s first talk about the resources for technical assistance….Technical Assistance

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