Audio is one of the most crucial elements of an eLearning course. But, it is often consigned to the background as we tend to think of it as something ancillary, which can be patched on to the course at the last minute. Including audio as an afterthought is a sure recipe for diaster as the entire course will veer on a disastrous note. The audio might end up being patchy in terms of tone and flow. It will lead the course on a jarring note.
To avoid these consequences, it is a good option to keep track of your strategy right from the word go. Include it in your discussions with the stakeholders and when discussing the course strategy. Though we fail to realize, audio strategy is very closely linked to the course strategy. This is because the course and audio CANNOT run on parallel tracks. They have to be in sync to produce a harmonious course.
For instance, if you decide that a particluar course will follow a story-telling approach, the tone of the audio can’t be in the form of a monologue by an invisible character. Similarly, if the course is following a case-study based approach, the audio can’t have frivolous dialogues or banter.
Thus, it is of prime importance to deal with the audio strategy in conjuction with the course strategy to ensure that they run smoothly on the same track. Always ensure that audio is aligned with the course strategy.
Additionally, there are other things which will help you churn out perfect audio which will be in tandem with the course and aid maximum knowledge retention and engage learners’ participation. These include the following:
1. Use vocabulary which reflects the tone of the course. The words used in the audio should not be in variance with the couse style.
For example, a course intented for senior management should not contain slang words. Similarly, a course meant for new recruits should not contain technical jargon or complicated terminology they are yet to be familiar with.
2. Avoid language that sterotypes or targets specific communities or groups. Avoid language that can easily point at or ridicule a particular group.
For example, it is not a good practice to depict people of a particular group as being victims of harassment, malicious gossip, etc.
3. Aviod sexually degrogatory language. Always follow a gender-neutral, non-offensive language that will not offend any group.
For example, avoid language that can be offensive to women though it might be perfectly acceptable to men.
Lastly, ensure that the course and audio are perfectly aligned and speak the same language. If the course deals with technical issues, it will be inappropriate to use terms related to performance management or soft-skills.
Follow these guidelines and ensure you have an audio strategy that fits hand-in-glove with your course strategy.