Here’s a quick dictionary definition for you: it’s basically a type of video media that supports and allows a level of interaction, often with multiple routes, paths and outcomes. They work in just the same way a normal video does, in that you watch them, but they allow the user watching to click or decide certain actions at key points. This often results in an action as a result. Think of those old dungeon and dragon games you used to play when you were growing up and you won’t be far out!
Whenever we’re asked this question we always smile. The reason is that we think interactive videos are really cool and we just love the technology that sits behind them.
That said, most of our customers and their employees don’t have the time to ‘play’ with videos they’re watching. They just want to see how to do something, try it out for themselves on their own application relative to the job they’re doing and move on.
So, whilst we’ve nothing but admiration for all the technology that goes into interactive video we do question whether it’s really what the learner wants or whether it’s just another one of the things that looks good when you first see it but becomes a distraction when you have to use it. We’d argue it’s great for softer skills, less so for more application driven learning. It also lends itself to slightly longer learning episodes, rather than just a few minutes!