Every year The Bookseller, the book industry’s business magazine, awards a lucky author the Diagram Prize for the Oddest Title of the Year. The first award was given in 1978 to the authors of Proceedings of the Second International Workshop on Nude Mice. Other worthy winners have been Greek Rural Postmen and Their Cancellation Numbers (1996), The Big Book of Lesbian Horse Stories (2003), Goblinproofing One’s Chicken Coop (2012) and last year’s champion, How to Poo on a Date.

While we may not yet receive awards for our course titles, who’s to say us course designers can’t have a little fun too? This week Articulate challenged the E-Learning Heroes community to design a cover slide for the oddest e-Learning course title of the year. While there’s a slough (that’s Southern for “a whole mess of things”) of odd course titles already, I decided to come up with my own: Avoiding Rain in the Sunshine State. I also wanted to try my hand at designing graphics in PowerPoint so that was my tool of choice this time.

Despite our ‘Sunshine State’ nickname, it actually does rain in Florida. See also, Hurricanes. I thought of the title for my course after hearing a story recently about a field inspector in my organization. His job requires him to travel across a large area of the state to inspect various medical facilities. After we implemented of the use of iPads to complete inspection forms, he began to report many technical issues. Long story short, we found he was overloading his iPad with inspections causing its performance to slow. His reasoning? He’s afraid of lightening and likes to be able to change his course if there’s a storm ahead. Assigning many inspections to himself allows him the flexibility to re-route to an area where it’s not raining.

Not only is this a good example of getting to the root of the issue, it’s also a reminder you can’t always avoid the rain in the Sunshine State. But, you can sure try. 🙂