Based on Bandersnatch: Designing a “Choose Your Own Adventure” eLearning Module

Concurrent Session 1
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Brief Abstract

Emmy award winning Black Mirror: Bandersnatch was Netflix’s first interactive movie that allowed the viewer to choose the movie’s storyline.  Designed in Articulate Storyline and similar to Bandersnatch, this case-based eLearning module allows the student to choose their own learning path.  In this session we will review the eLearning module and discuss the design process while providing technology tips and tricks for developing multifaceted branching scenarios, triggers and layers.

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Tracy A. Mendolia-Moore, M.A. Ed. is the Lead Instructional Designer with the Center of Academic and Professional Enhancement at the Western University of Health Sciences. As an Instructional Designer, Tracy works with the faculty and staff of the university to assist them with the development of innovative teaching methods by utilizing technology and good pedagogy practices. Tracy is the Instructional Designer for the Center of Academic and Professional Enhancement at Western University of Health Sciences in Pomona, California. Tracy is passionate about technology and instructional design, and currently represents WesternU as the EDUCAUSE Ambassador for the university. Additionally, she leads numerous presentations designed to educate the EdTech industry and campus-community on e-learning and innovative technology efforts in teaching. Tracy is a member of the Team-Based Learning Consortium, Google Women Techmakers, Golden Key International Honor Society, Girl Scouts of America, and is an alumnus of the Delta Zeta Sorority. Tracy has been awarded a Letter of Appreciation from the United States Coast Guard, one of the highest honors a Civilian can receive, for widespread fundraising efforts benefitting the Chief Petty Officer’s Association in Kodiak, Alaska. Tracy has received a certificate in Leading for Equity, Diversity and Inclusion in Higher Education from the University of Michigan, she holds a Bachelor of Arts degree in Communications with an emphasis in Advertising from California State University, Fullerton, and has graduated from California State Polytechnic University, Pomona with a Master of Arts in Education degree with an emphasis in Educational Multimedia.

Extended Abstract

Emmy award winning Black Mirror: Bandersnatch was Netflix’s first interactive movie that allowed the viewer to choose the movie’s storyline.  Like the popular Choose Your Own Adventure books from the 1970’s, Bandersnatch created multiple paths within the storyline based on the choices selected by the viewer.  The question became, can we create an eLearning module based on the framework of Bandersnatch?


It was a question posed by our Subject Matter Expert (SME), a respected pharmacist and professor at the university. The SME wanted to reimagine his lecture on therapeutic medication for schizophrenia diagnosis.  Bandersnatch’s creative layout and extensive branching scenarios provided the ideal format for a schizophrenia patient case study, and Articulate Storyline was the only authoring tool powerful enough to make this idea come to life.


The simulated case study follows the patient, PJ, through multiple medication timelines.  Similar to Bandersnatch, the student chooses which medication to prescribe PJ, and therefore chooses their own individual learning path.  Much of the module branching originates from the virtual pharmacy in which the student has six medications to prescribe to the patient.  Once a selection is made, the student travels down the education path. 


Throughout the education path the student learns about the prescribed medication, answers questions, participates in interactions, and discovers common medication side-effects.  The side-effects ultimately overwhelm PJ, and the learner is forced to return to the virtual pharmacy slide to choose another medication for the patient.  Intricate triggers are integrated within the module forcing the student to learn about, and exhaust, all medication options until the correct medication appears on the pharmacy shelf thereby proving the ending path of the case simulation.


The complicated branching scenario in the eLearning module includes over 80 slides, 40 layers, 35 interactions, 20 variables, over 100 triggers, and a result slide that captures the student’s choices along the way.  Additionally, all the representative artwork integrated within the design was created by individuals living with schizophrenia.


In this session we will review the creative and design process that begun with generic PowerPoint themed slides supplied by the SME and discuss how the content was reimagined and retooled to be an engaging eLearning module student experience.  During the session the audience will gain access to the e-module and experience the case via their tablet, mobile device, or wi-fi enabled laptop.  Technology tips and tricks for developing multifaceted branching scenarios, triggers and layers will be shared.  After the conference participants can continue to develop their cases and will have access to an online repository of cases that will be developed by the larger group.