The rapid growth of the e-learning market is no surprise – what should be surprising is the fact that its popularity hasn’t increased sooner. E-learning is convenient, cheap, and geographical location doesn’t affect it – anyone can access contemporary education material and start working on the career of their dreams, no matter where they live.
When creating online courses, you should be aware that you need to fulfill certain criteria which should meet the expectations of your target audience – your learners. Being new in this business, it will be easier for you to focus on what not to do instead of what you should do. So, knowing what is perceived as a rookie mistake can help you improve the quality of your work quite fast.
Creating a Course without a Structure
Most entrepreneurs in eLearning industry, start creating online courses without even a defined structure or a set outline. That’s the reason, they fail to engage their learners and undergo financial losses. To make your elearning course delightfully smart, first of all, you need to incorporate an introduction that will grab the audience’s attention. It should be written in a way that informs learners’ about what to expect in the entire course.
The second part is the story. Chances are that you’ve watched at least one movie you found boring – why is that? Because its elements were scattered and poorly connected. For a story to be interesting, each element you implement must be there for a reason. Therefore, make sure to connect the sentences to create a perfect storyline. And finally, there’s the end or a conclusion that serves as a summary.
Focusing on One Type of Content
Most businesses lose their track as they focus more on integrating one type of content. It more or less looks like manuals which consists of same content. That said, an educational unit that uses only one type of content is difficult to master. Therefore, your goal should be to develop a course that is interesting and highly-engaging for your learners no matter you need to include variety of content in your course. All you need to do is add dynamics to your work. Naturally, your LMS software will help you with that, so don’t hesitate to implement:
- audio files
If you do this, you’ll be able to create an online course that’s rich in content. Besides, this is the only way to address different types of learners, which is something your audience will appreciate.
Ignoring the Rules of Aesthetics
Ignoring the rules of aesthetics is one of the biggest mistakes that most people do while creating online courses. Whereas they need to realize that rules of aesthetics aren’t there just to make a course look nice. They are an important learning aid.
Imagine an A4 page that’s filled with plain texts; no paragraphs, headings, subheadings, or anything. Even though this might be a serious high quality piece of educational material, only a small number of people will be able to go through it and actually learn something.
Therefore, you should pay attention to tools for:
- creating chapters
- adding subheadings
- italic and bold
It’s quite important that you get to know the LMS software you’re using. Once you get familiar with all the options it offers, you’ll be able to use them properly for preparing an effective online course.
Not Challenging Your Learners
For your course to sell, you need to create something worth purchasing – it’s as simple as that.
Therefore, creating an online course out of generic content that your learners are able to find online will reflect poorly on your reputation. What will make your courses stand out from others is quality, so you need to focus on it.
Your goal is to build a well-researched, resourceful course that will supply the market with a new spin on a familiar subject. So, you shouldn’t run from creating a challenging course. If it’s properly formatted and contains dynamic information, it will prove to be a successful course.
Releasing an Incompatible Course
Considering the fact that this market is rapidly growing, most course developers are using different platforms to reach out to their audience. If you want to capture the entire market, you need to build courses that are compatible with every device and can reach any OS. So, it’s in your best interest to release educational material that’s fully compatible with different platforms.
Using an Outdated Piece of Software
Building a course compatible with different types of operating systems and devices isn’t something that needs to worry you as a course developer – that’s something software developers need to think about. Your job is to find the right piece of software.
If you use an outdated piece of technology, it will not only restrict you to develop compatible courses, but you’ll also have issues with creating courses that contain different types of content. Even formatting can give you a headache with poor software. So, you should be very careful with your software selection. Choose an LMS tool that is perfect for course developers and contains all the desired features you might need.
The Bottom Line
If you manage to steer clear of the rookie mistakes listed above, even the first courses you release will be a valuable addition to the e-learning market. Remember to challenge your learners with dynamic content, pay close attention to the structure of your courses, and use an effective tool that will assist you in your work.
Kamy Anderson is an ed-tech enthusiast with a passion for writing on emerging technologies in the areas of corporate training and education. He is an expert in learning management system & elearning authoring tools – currently associated with ProProfs.