There’s a saying in the real estate industry that the three most important aspects of a real estate property is “location, location, location”. In e-learning those three aspects would be “content, content, content”.
All the fancy gizmos (augmented reality, gamification, interactive multimedia and the like) won’t help you if your content is not up to the task ― the task being helping your students learn and understand the course’s subject matter, of course.
The generic advice we gave in previous posts still holds: it should be clear and succinct, well structured and divided into the appropriate lessons (or “chapters”), and accompanied with relevant as opposed to decorative examples, illustrations and media.
Beyond that, we cannot tell you in detail about how to write or structure your content because it depends on the particular course you’re offering and what better suits it.
Instead, we’ll have a look at what you should include in your course, taking into account what modern LMS platforms offer. Some of the advice (such as the need to have lessons) are seemingly obvious, but bear with us, as we delve into some issues course creators face, that you might not have thought.
More is better, bigger is better, shinier is better. Not necessarily when it comes to visual aesthetics in human-computer interactions.
Imagine opening a website looking for something specific, when all at once banners and pop-up ads start flashing at you, graphics are whirling, sounds exploding, text is blinking. The effect? You frantically start clicking and closing and minimizing… or you just become overwhelmed or annoyed and leave.
While not necessarily the case with training program design, there are instances when in the hopes of adding more functionality and value, course designers forget about the actual human experience of trainees.
First impressions are everything and looking at a program that does not immediately please us aesthetically makes us less inclined to enjoy interacting with it.
Culture determines not only how one learns and what one learns but also what one perceives as important to learn – and the effects of culture on learners’ experiences in elearning can be profound. Culture affects social behavior, communication, cognitive processes, and how one interacts with learning technologies – all central components to elearning design (Vatrapi, 2008). Anybody who has taught multi-cultural classes innately understand this in those “lost in translation” moments – dead silence, hesitation, discomfort, lack of participation – all visual cues. But if you’re doing an elearning course, especially if it’s self-paced, trainers cannot know what’s going on at the other end for learners. Continue reading