Instructional Design

5 Quick Tips to Explain a Complicated Idea

Tony Veal quote

“Anyone can articulate a complicated idea in a complicated way, but it takes genuine insight to reduce it to its simplest form without loss of meaning or the potential for subsequent elaboration.”

– Tony Veale

Given a free reign, how would you present and explain a complicated idea to someone else?

Would you describe it with words, pictures, models, interactions?

Here are 5 tips:

  1. Make sure you really do understand the idea yourself. Explore the idea with: Why, What, How, When, Where, Who type questions.
  2. Know your audience and use the language they use.
  3. Break down the elements of the idea.
  4. Identify the most appropriate medium (text, video, model, etc.) for each element.
  5. Build the elements into a story.

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