E-learning is the continuous process of learning through electronic media. Instructional design is a systematic process of learning, and this learning facilitates achievement of the intended goals. Many think that instructional design is all about using technology, but this is not the case.
As instructional designers, we discover new strategies and techniques for creating extraordinary courses. Our biggest challenge is to keep the learner engaged throughout the course. Often, the content of the course is considered the most important aspect of instructional design; however, presentation styles are also essential. Thus, designing visually appealing and eye-catchy courses is the primary objectiveof an instructional designer. In this blog, I’ll share a few dos and don’ts which will help design better online courses.
Use graphics: It is always important to select the right kind of graphic which complements the text. Adding relevant images wherever possible helps in explaining ideas, concepts or statements. Each image added should have a specific purpose relevant to the content being taught.
Use graphics near text: Use graphics to teach a concept as it is a great way to help the learner learn easily. However, if the graphic ‘dominates’ the text, the learner loses interest in the course. Therefore, a proper balance between text and graphics should be maintained. Make sure that the graphic is always near the text.
Do NOT explain the graphic and text: It is a best practice to teach a self-explanatory graphic using only audio. DO NOT explain the graphic in combination with the text and audio. Effective learning happens only when the graphic is explained using explanatory audio alone.
AVOID using complementary visuals: Avoid using irrelevant visuals, text and audio which do not teach anything. Ensure that the text is clear and concise and avoid lengthy paragraphs, to facilitate good learning.
Since all eLearning courses use graphics, text and audio to deliver content, keep these dos and don’ts in mind before developing online courses.