The Power of Animation to Improve Focus and Attention in eLearning

Animation in eLearning

In 2022, TikTok was downloaded 74.5 million times – demonstrating the power of video and the shortening of attention spans. While we already know that video content is an increasingly important tool for communication, marketing, and education, are there some video formats that perform better than others?

In this blog, we’ll explore the various ways in which animation can be leveraged to make eLearning more interactive and impactful.

Why animation?

Humans are naturally drawn to animations due to their ability to stimulate the visual and auditory senses. The movement and sound in animations attract our attention and engage our brains, making them an effective tool for capturing and maintaining our focus. Animations also allow for more control over the pacing, tone, and style of the video, making it easier for learners to engage with and retain information.

Explore in more detail some of the key reasons why animation is one of the most beneficial forms of video for eLearning.

Engaging and memorable

One of the most significant advantages of animated videos is that they are engaging and memorable. Unlike other forms of video content, animated videos can be specifically designed to create an immersive experience for learners. eLearning designers can use colours, graphics, and sound effects to create visually appealing and interactive learning experiences that help learners stay engaged and focused.


Animated videos are also cost-effective compared to other forms of video content. While live-action videos require actors, equipment, locations, and other resources, animated videos can be created with just a computer and animation software. This makes it easier for eLearning designers to create high-quality video content without breaking the bank.

Moreover, animated videos can be used to create multiple versions of the same content, making it easy to customise the content for different audiences or learners. This flexibility allows eLearning designers to create video content that meets the needs of learners with different learning styles and preferences.

Visual representation of abstract ideas

Animated videos are also useful for representing abstract ideas and concepts. Sometimes, it can be challenging to represent abstract concepts using live-action videos or static images, this could be because of the subject matter or because stock images and footage are hard to find. With animated videos, eLearning designers can create visual representations of abstract ideas with custom characters, settings, and situations that simulate real-world scenarios and help learners understand the concepts better.

For example, an animated video can be used to represent the flow of data in a computer network, which might be difficult to understand using text or images.

Animations can also be used to illustrate complex processes, such as the functioning of the human body or the chemical reactions involved in a scientific experiment.

Reduce cognitive load

Animation is an effective tool to reduce cognitive load when it comes to learning online. Cognitive load refers to the amount of mental effort needed to process information in working memory. Animation simplifies complex information by presenting it in a visual format that is easy to understand. By using animation, learners can focus on key concepts and relationships without being overwhelmed by extraneous information. It allows learners to process information more efficiently, leading to better retention and understanding. This is especially true for people who are visual or kinetic learners, as animation can help to illustrate abstract or complex concepts in a way that is easily digestible.

Consistency and branding

The use of consistent design elements, such as colours, graphics, and characters, can help learners identify and connect with the content. This consistency can be particularly useful for organisations that want to create a consistent brand identity across different eLearning modules or courses.

Animated videos also offer an opportunity to create characters or mascots. These characters or mascots can be used to create a sense of familiarity and comfort for learners, making it easier for them to engage with the content.

Accessibility and inclusivity

Finally, animated videos offer accessibility and inclusivity. One of the most significant advantages of eLearning is that it can be accessed from anywhere, at any time. However, this can be a challenge for learners with disabilities, such as visual or auditory impairments. Animated videos can be designed to be accessible and inclusive, with features such as closed captioning, sign language interpretation, and audio descriptions.

Animated videos can also be used to create culturally inclusive content. For example, eLearning designers can create animated videos that represent different cultures, languages, and perspectives, making the content more inclusive and engaging for learners from diverse backgrounds.

How to incorporate animation into eLearning content

Animated videos

Animated videos can be used to create engaging and informative content that is easy to understand. These videos can cover a wide range of topics, from product tutorials to corporate training.

Interactive animations

Interactive animations can be used to create immersive and engaging learning experiences. These animations can be used to simulate real-world scenarios, allowing learners to apply what they have learned in a safe and controlled environment.


Infographics are a great way to present complex information in a visually appealing and easy-to-understand format. Animated infographics can take this to the next level by incorporating movement and interactivity to make the content more engaging.


Gamification is the process of using game elements and mechanics in non-game contexts to engage and motivate learners. Animated characters and environments can be used to create immersive and engaging games that help learners achieve their learning goals.


Simulations can be used to create realistic scenarios that allow learners to practice and apply what they have learned in a safe and controlled environment. Animated simulations can be used to create immersive and engaging learning experiences that help learners build their skills and confidence.

How to get started

Looking to get started with animation? There are several considerations to keep in mind when you’re thinking of how to incorporate animation into your eLearning content.

Firstly, think about what type of animation you want to create. Will it be 2D graphics, illustrated or motion graphics? Will you be creating it from scratch or using existing assets?

What is the message you’re trying to convey or the action that you want people to take? Who is your audience?

Once you have considered these initial questions, you can get started with the right application. Animated videos can be stand alone or imported into Articulate Storyline or Articulate Rise which gives you the capability to add interactive content, assessments and to track completion and feedback when you publish to LMS standards.

Here at B Online Learning we can help your bring your content to life with our animated video production services.  Just like our animation you see at the top of the page. Get in touch to discuss your project today.

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