The Show: Learning Design Competition

If you work in Learning & Development, you owe it to yourself to check out “The Show”. Cath Ellis and Kim Tuohy have created a totally brilliant learning design competition that is currently running as part of the lead up to The Learning Conference 2020.

It is like “March Madness” but for learning pros. It all started with 64 designers facing off against one another, designing learning solutions based on fictional briefs that change from round to round. The top vote-getters of each round advance as the field is narrowed down each week until the ultimate winner is crowned. Every episode is jam-packed with great tips and tricks

I had the honor of being a guest for this week’s “Elite 8” round and was blown away by the submissions. This is one of the best things I’ve seen in a long time. One of my favorite things is the community that has formed around this and the opportunity to see so much great work being shared.

Each week a design brief is shared and the designers set off to work. The result is a rich collection of designs offering a fantastic opportunity for anyone to learn about the thinking that went into each submission. This wonderful example of “working out loud” offers a chance for anyone to glean some practical takeaways that they can apply to their own work. From instructional design and project proposals to multimedia creation and content creation tools, I guarantee you’ll find something of value in here.

A great resource for tools and ideas

For example, the submissions we looked at in this round all had ideas anyone could use to improve any online course. Things like extending the course to an online community the way Amanda set up the pledge using Padlet, the way Emma added the ability to submit questions, or how Troy created the leaderboard with Google Sheets.

Boost your own portfolio

You could also use these briefs to flex your own design muscles and to create your own work and add it to your portfolio. If you don’t have a portfolio yet, this is a great opportunity to start one.

Watch ‘The Show’

Treat yourself and block some time to cruise through the YouTube channel and see what ideas you can take away from this amazing collection of work.

If you’d like to learn even more, browse the briefs from each round and learn more about the participants and more over here in Milanote. (You can even learn something just from that app and how they organized all the content so nicely!)

The Show Milanote

So kudos to Cath and Kim! Now head on over and follow THE SHOW and vote for your favorite learning designs to help crown the Best Learning Designer 2020.


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Published by Mike Taylor

Born with a life-long passion for learning, I have the great fortune to work at the intersection of learning, design, technology & collaboration.

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