Instructional design revolves around a visual hierarchy which teaches the audience how something works or how to do something. Poorly directed instructions affect the user experience greatly which ultimately makes the product undesirable and useless. It is important to account for the cultural differences as well as the targeted audience to successfully create an instructional design.
The ‘Cognitive Load Theory’ explains how we think and how we remember information, and how we manipulate such information stored in our short-term memory. Through this research, designers were able to develop a solution which effectively delivers instructions. This is seen through building a balanced visual hierarchy of pictures and text with the application of the Principles of Proximity.
Generally, the Principle of Proximity defines elements that are close together are perceived by the viewers of being closely related. This has been proven through research to be the most effective way to execute instructional design.
When it comes to the graphic approach, photography is not the ideal solution as the image contains too much information which becomes unclear and overwhelms the audience. Using simple graphics instead, with a limited colour palette, isolates the important details and clearly conveys the actions without the unnecessary aspects from the photographs.
Origami Club is a website which showcases a variety of origami ideas in conjunction with their instructions. There are three options to choose from when learning: diagram, animation or youtube video. The diagrams are illustration based and are limited to two colours to help differentiate which side of the paper is the right way.
Albert Cairo describes 4 types of user interactions when it comes to unifying instructional design with interactivity.
INSTRUCTION: By clicking buttons to progress through the tutorial. E.g. Learning how to play an instrument by substituting in keyboard buttons.
CONVERSATION: Answering questions and changing the variables to produce a different result through back and forth dialogue. E.g. Planning a trip through public transport.
MANIPULATION: Allowing the audience to rearrange and change the appearance and structure presented to them through dragging and dropping elements. E.g. Positioning furniture in a limited space.
EXPLORATION: It is a game like exploration play through which an objective is achieved through trial and error, effectively maximising user experience and education.