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5 Tips for designing impactful eLearning courses

Anjana Khare / No Comments

Learning has undergone a sea-change in the 21st century, thanks to the advent of information and communication technology. Internet and multimedia have changed the face and pace of learning and facilitated eLearning in a very profound way.

eLearning courses demand more research and homework because the learner and instructor have lesser scope for personal interaction. In fact, the course itself acts as the instructor and therefore, it is important to design the course in such a way that the learner feels an instant connection with the course from the very first day.

It is worth remembering here that the experience of the learner during the learning process is the focal point of eLearning as it shapes the outcome of learning. This is why designing the eLearning course requires a clear and holistic approach. It is undoubtedly challenging but rewarding as well. So, here are 5 tips to help you design eLearning projects with precision.

1. Set an appropriate level of interaction

Interaction is the cornerstone of eLearning as it determines engagement and success rate of the course. So, it is important to decide the right interactional level that will go with the course. For simple courses, where the focus is on making the learners grasp knowledge, facts and concepts, level 1 interaction is adequate and one can make use of eLearning tools like text, charts and images. For little more complex courses where the objective is to impart skills or procedural knowledge about a subject, level 2 is appropriate and would need elements like mouse clicks, drag and drop, video, audio narration, etc. Similarly, as the complexity of the course rises, more interactive and engaging learning tools like simulations, games, etc. are needed to teach the lessons correctly.

2. Put the right elements into the course structure

The structure of the online training course must contain instructional elements that stimulate learning and aid understanding. Firstly, there should be a logical flow in the content and the learner should feel at ease as the course moves from one slide to another. Secondly, the content should be chunked to help the learners grasp things easily and also remember them. Lastly, there should be adequate amount of content. Avoid bold colors, controversial images, lengthy text, dramatic effects. Do a revision before final launch and edit stuff if you find it unnecessary. Keep it simple enough to be engaging, thought-provoking and easygoing.

3. Set proper learning objectives

It is important to tell learners in clear terms what is in store for them when they take up an eLearning course. They ought to know what knowledge and skills they would end up with after completing the course. For ex, an SEO course dealing with keyword topic should mention that the objectives are to teach the definition of keywords, their usage, usage of keyword tool and the like.

4. Design assessment tests to check understanding of the course

Successful completion of any elearning course requires careful and regular assessment at right intervals. So, there must be assessments to evaluate the understanding of the leaner. After each major topic in the course, assessments like multiple choice questions, column matching exercises, scenario-based choices, etc. should be included. This will also engage the learner in a better manner and most importantly, will tell them if they need to relearn the topic or they can proceed ahead to the next. It is necessary for proper learning as it allows them to reflect upon the content and activities they accessed and participated in during the eLearning class.

5. Create a summary at the end

Retention is a vital part of learning and nothing works better in this regard than a course summary. It is like taking a recap of the entire episode so that the learner may move on to the next topic with proper background. Remember the course is a step-by-step flow of topics and thus, the learner needs to remember the past lessons to grasp the next ones correctly. So, the course must have highlights at the end of the course, briefly summarizing the points that can be used to create bite-size pieces of information that will be easy for the learners to remember.

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