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3 Tips for Designing Learner-centric E-learning Courses

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3 Tips for Designing Learner-centric E-learning Courses

We all remember our school days. Don’t we? We still cherish the happy moments spent with our friends during those days. But, there were a few times where we faced difficulties with certain subjects. The formulae in mathematics, complicated equations in physics and chemistry and important dates and years in history was no less than a “haunting movie”. But, thanks to our teachers who would try out all possibilities to make these difficult subjects interesting, we could learn them effectively. The same is the case with instructional designers. They need to act as teachers and make eLearning interesting, so that learners are engaged effectively.

Out of my experience as an instructional designer, I would like to present a few tips that go a long way in designing an effective eLearning course and presenting a great experience to your learners.

1. Maintain the right balance: Before developing an eLearning course, you need to bear in mind that your learners are the ones who would be taking your course. Hence it is very important that you know who your learners are and how your course would be beneficial to them. You need to create a course that would maintain the right balance. Ensure that your course is not so easy that your learners would stay away from it or not too complicated that might frustrate your learner.

  • What you need to do

    • Find out how much your learners already know and what is that you would like to teach them.
    • Create the learning objectives of your elearning course in a manner that would meet the desired learning outcome.
    • Create assessments that are neither very easy nor complicated. Ensure that distractors are not so obvious that would easily give away the answers.

2. Ask Questions: After you understand the profile of your learners, you need to know what you want them to do after completing the online learning course. Do you want the learners to just learn and retain the knowledge? Or, do you want to make them put the knowledge gained into practice? I am sure you would want your learners to gain as much as knowledge as possible and get the most out of your eLearning course.

  • What you need to do

    • Ask questions at the beginning of the course to engage your learners. This sets the stage for your learners to discover that the course is relevant to their learning needs.
    • Ask questions such as “how”, “what”, and “why” in order to make your learners apply their prior knowledge and answer the question.
    • Bear in mind that your questions should neither be too difficult nor easy.

3. Motivate your learners: How do you keep your learners engaged throughout the course. How can you make sure that your learners take the course with great enthusiasm and get the most out of it? These are the questions you need to ask yourself before developing a course.

  • What you need to do

    • Compel your learners to think critically. For this, present them with some challenges. Then, walk them through the course to discover the solutions to these challenges.
    • Present interactive scenarios and examples rather than just dumping content into slides. This helps you learners relate the course with real-life situations.

I am sure that these tips would add value to your eLearning course. Do add to this list.

View eBook on Instructional Design 101 – A Handy Guide for E-learning Designers


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