Developing e-learning courses is both an art and a science. The art of instructional design lies in creating innovative and engaging ways to facilitate learning. In this blog post, we’ll look at the science of Instructional Design, specifically with regard to the steps in the Development stage of the Instructional Design Process.
1. Content analysis
We don’t dump the entire client inputs in an e-learning course. We analyze the content. What is needed and what is not to create an e-learning course. When the client gives you inputs and materials to develop, you need to analyze them with the help of Subject Matter Experts (SMEs). This will add great value to your e-learning course.
Content analysis is vital, because depending on the type of content, you need to adopt a suitable learning strategy. In e-learning, you will come across five categories of content. Those are facts, concepts, principles, process, and procedures. You can present facts in the form of tables, graphs, line diagrams, and more. To explain concepts in ane-learning course, you will give adefinition, show images, examples, and analogies. You can use Instructional Strategies such as workflows and simulations (Demo-Try- Do) to train on procedures. Likewise, for processes you can have case studies and scenarios.
So when you analyze the given content, you will be able to present it in an appropriate manner.
2. Developing a Storyboard
A Storyboard is the blueprint for the course; it specifies the learning objectives, visuals, text, audio, interactivities and other elements to be used for each screen in an e-learning course. Setting clear learning goals, getting relevant content, defining specific learning objectives, creating measurable assessments, and using the right instructional model, all these steps help you develop an effective e-learning storyboard. You can check this info-graphic to create a meaningful storyboard for e-learning.
3. Developing a Prototype
The prototype is a fully functional version of an e-learning course, containing a few screens. it represents how the course looks and functions in terms of assessments, Graphical User Interface (GUI), interactivities, and audio. Ideally, a prototype should contain around 10% of your e-learning course.
A prototype helps improve the quality of an e-learning course. Instead of trying to do all at once and changing things later,, you can develop a prototype. This will present the look and feel of the course and to the client and avoids last minute surprises. In a prototype, you can focus on Instructional Design strategies, finalize the audio narration, technical standards, animations and check for AICC/SCORM compatibility of the e-learning course.
4. Course submission
Once the prototype is approved, you can develop a fully functional course without audio, as Subject Matter Experts (SMEs) may suggest some changes in the content. After the complete course is checked and the getting a clear signoff, you can go for audio recording.
You can make your e-learning course SCORM/AICC/xAPI (Tin can API) compliant so that it runs on an LMS. This will ensure your client can track the progress of their learners.
Aligning assessments with the set learning objectives will make a positive impact on your learners. If you follow the principles given in each stage, you can minimize the development time and costs of e-learning development without compromising on quality.
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