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Forgive me for leading my post with joke, but a famous comedian George Carlin once said about the opposite meaning of “deja vu”, “Do you ever get that strange feeling of vuja de? Not deja vu, vuja de. It’s the distinct sense that somehow, something that just happened has never happened before.”

For some companies, they are venturing out from a time-tested and traditional means of delivering content. And others have an annual eLearning course that everyone is expecting, which may have a few tweaks or changes from what they’ve seen in previous courses. So, how do you engage these users while keeping laser focused content where they already have familiarity?

Here are four tips to create content with familiarity:

1. Be cautious when using the same template or format that has always been used.

Why is this the best way to provide this information? If people get the information the same way over time, they may not take the time to review it and just assume that they already know that information.

2. Use a section that repeats from previous versions.

Have we identified what is causing this behavior in the company?  Is the section engaging but not actually teaching anything?

3. Don’t over-focus on the new and updated sections.

Unless the course is an addendum that only highlights changes, beware of neglecting the remaining content. Does it make sense to have a conversation with the client about a course that is just updates?

4. Be purposeful in proposing new ideas or interactions to change the approach in a course.

Generally, an altered approach will be met with some push back. Be prepared to discuss why a change may be meaningful and specifically where it could impact the course. But also, keep the client’s desired state as the end goal. No need to win the battle on the interaction if you push the client too far from their comfort zone.

Employing vuja de will engage your users and the project sponsors in making the course as meaningful as possible. It allows a person who has seen the same content for years to think about it in a new light.

How do you incorporate vuja de in your eLearning? Share your ideas in the comment section below.

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