Let me ask you a question.
Do you know when the process of designing course materials started?
The process of designing started in the early 1900s; during those days, it was in the initial stage but in the 1940s military personnel wanted an effective training material that was based on the principles of instruction and behavior of a human. The test was basically to screen human ability and it was successful.
The field of psychology then used the training system to develop procedures such as analysis, design and evaluation. Since then, the drive to develop more training courses intensified. This led to the development of e-tools, which are an easily accessible tool for learners. “ATI” anytime information just like an ATM.
It is a process through which learning needs can be analyzed, and a delivery system is developed to meet these needs. The most important point in this process is the source, a plan, organizing it, and an effective course design.
Five Effective Elements of Instructional Designing
1. To understand the characteristics of a learner:
While creating a course, the parameters are different for different sets of learners. For instance, adults are always curious about why they should learn something and they also prefer to be self-directed. So it is very important to bear this fact in mind when designing a course for adult learners. Likewise, designing the course for children is not the same as for adults because children are always dependent on the method of explanation.
2. Set objectives for learning:
The most important point is that by the end of the course the learner should be able to clearly assess himself. The objective goes through a process that includes performance, preferred conditions and specific criteria. Objectives that are well defined help in selecting proper content, kind of methods, media and assessments.
Here is a screen shot that shows how to set the learning objectives for the course.
3. Arrange the objectives and contents in a sequence:
Extensive content is invariably available in different books, websites, journals, presentations, videos so on and so forth. Based on the learning objectives, the content can be collected and the most important point is to arrange it and prepare a list of topics and sub-topics and to know the proper way of sequencing the objectives and content you should consult a Subject Matter Expert (SME). The content has to be classified into the types — facts, concepts, principles, process and procedure. This will help in designing a proper learning course and also more effectively helps to test the content.
Here is a screen shot that shows Content that is classified into the different types: facts, concepts, process, procedures and principles.
4. Presentation patterns:
After the three elements, that is, understanding the learner, setting objective and then the sequentially arranging the objectives and content, the most important point is to decide the presentation patterns for the content. It includes pre-determined activity, presentation, assessments and learners’ feedback. Chunking information into easy-to-understand bits encourages learners to take up the course. In the process of feedback with reasons, for all answers that are just a “yes” or “no” the reasons should be specified or explained clearly. While designing courses, focus should be on individuals rather than on groups so that the instructional design process will be more effective.
5. To assess the performance of the learner:
To know whether the learner has understood the course, you can choose pre-test or either of formative or summative evaluation criteria. Assessment with appropriate feedback is very essential at the end of the course because learners can get an idea of their knowledge levels and decide whether to take on more training courses to enhance their skills.
The above “five elements of instructional designing” can help you to create an instructionally interactive course rather than a passive one. Do share your comments on this subject.
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E-learning is increasingly used by organizations as online courses are effective, affordable and can be accessed anytime, anywhere. But, many organizations are not able to realize these benefits offered by the online training medium due to a serious problem – high dropout rates.
Day-by-day, the demand for rapid e-learning is increasing, and so, everyone is using rapid authoring tools to develop online courses. There are many authoring tools available in the market but a few became very popular. Most of our customers and prospects prefer Articulate Storyline to other rapid authoring tools such as Captivate and Lectora. Developing courses in Storyline is very easy, and the tool offers a lot of flexibility to customize the features or look and feel of the online course.
When it comes to mobile learning, HTML5 with responsive design is required to provide the best learning experience on mobiles, especially on smart-phones with small screens. Courses developed in Storyline and Lectora work fine on mobile devices such as iPads and other tablets, but it is difficult to view them in smart-phones. Captivate has a responsive design feature. So, we must choose it if we need to develop courses for all mobile devices. Captivate is not very intuitive and flexible to develop customized features. We can also build mobile- compatible courses using manual coding but it is time-consuming and expensive.
Recently, I read the E-learning Guild report “Authoring Tool for Mobile Design” and in it, I saw the great news for which I was waiting for a while. I thought I should share it with you all. The developers of Articulate Storyline, Lectora Inspire, Lectora Online and other authoring tools are in the process of adding responsive design feature by the end of 2015.
Here is some information from the E-learning Guild report “Authoring Tool for Mobile Design”.
|Scales to multiple screen sizes||Yes||Yes||Yes|
|Responsive design features||Coming by end of 2015||Yes||Coming by end of 2015|
2016 will be a watershed year for mobile learning as all courses may be made compatible to all mobile devices. Storyline may become the first choice to develop e-learning or m-learning courses because of its intuitiveness. This may force all learning management systems to be compatible with mobile devices. MOODLE is ahead in this regard, and it has a responsive design feature and works on all the mobile devices.
Hope you find this post useful. Do share your views.
Despite today’s technology and a connected world, classroom training is still an effective method to impart training to all employees. But, instructor-led teaching may not be appropriate for all training needs. Suppose there is a requirement for an organisation to train its employees spread across the globe, on a particular product, in a month’s time, classroom training will not serve the purpose. Here, e-learning serves as a good option to train employees, at comparatively lower costs, within a given schedule. Due to improvements in reliability and speed, converting classroom training materials into online courses has become a justified and cost-effective opportunity.
In my previous blogs, I have discussed about the importance of instructional design strategy and visual design strategy, the two main elements of e-learning in terms of design approach. In this blog, I will discuss about the significance of audio and audio strategy.
Every organization has to follow a set of laws which govern their sector in the country they operate. So, it needs to ensure that the employees are effectively trained on these rules to avoid compliance issues. Traditionally, this was done through face-to-face training in an engaging manner. But, with organizations expanding globally and the need for constant training, companies started using e-learning to quickly reach their global employees.
E-Learning is gradually replacing the classroom training format, worldwide. 41.7 % of fortune 500 companies are using e-learning tools for online training (E-learning Magazine 2013).
Online courses need to be engaging and interactive because they are self-paced i.e. an instructor is not present to deliver the courses.
Content comprehension is an important step in the e-learning development process. It broadly includes identification of relevant content and its separation from irrelevant content and arranging it in a proper manner. It enables instructional designers (IDs) to ensure that topics ‘flow’ in a logical sequence. It also helps IDs to find gaps in the content. If performed effectively, it will help you understand the subject-matter of the course better, and you will be able to present the content in an easily understandable manner.
IPad – a device that has revolutionized the corporate world. According to the Mac Observer, 94% of Fortune 500 companies are either testing or using this device from Apple. The widespread usage of iPads has resulted in the opening of new vistas in online training. No longer were learners required to carry “heavy” laptops or remain confined to their desks. People could conveniently go through online courses on these devices. Indeed, these devices have truly made learning anytime, anywhere.
When it comes to training, most organizations have a need for product training. Be it manufacturing, pharmaceutical, electronics or finance, product training needs to be imparted by companies in all industries. So, how does one cater to a single form of training for such different segments? In this post, we will look at a few effective e-learning design strategies that are best suited for product training across various industries.
Curriculum-based courses are very much in demand today. Organizations prefer curriculum-based courses to stand-alone courses. Curriculum courses cater to a long running training program that usually runs for a period of two to three months. It is a course that has several modules which instruct on a particular subject in-depth. From the learner’s perspective, these modules would be easy to grasp and understand. They can be bite-sized modules that are easily accessible by the learners, anywhere, anytime, as per their convenience. Since all the modules of a curriculum are inter-related to each other, it is a tough task to develop such modules effectively.