The visual appearance of an eLearning course is a prime factor that makes your eLearning course well received by your target audience. You cannot judge a book by its cover, but the harsh reality is we do so. “Looks do matter”.
In this blog, I would like to share with some tips for making the eLearning screen look visually engaging.
1. Follow style guide
A style guide is a document that sets the standards and uniformity in style to be used throughout the course. In terms of visual appearance, the most important aspect of eLearning course is its consistency and cohesiveness. This includes how content should be written, when and where to capitalize and italicize, abbreviations, type of font to be used all throughout, sticking with a set color scheme, and so on. Following a style guide helps in maintaining consistency. This will help in avoiding mistakes and maintains the visual quality of the course.
Here is a sample of style guide:
2. Use attractive GUI
In eLearning, the Graphical User Interface (GUI) is considered to be an important part. It displays the buttons that guide the learners and help in navigating through the course smoothly. An attractive GUI that is easy to understand and navigate enables the learners to explore and learn what they want to learn, when they want.
Let’s look at an example of a GUI that we have designed incorporating the theme of water and sea for orientation of new employees for a company operating off-shore rigs. We designed the GUI by using image of the sea as background. We designed ‘Next’, ‘Previous’, ‘Play’ and ‘Audio’ buttons in the shape of water droplets, so that they are pleasant to the learners’ eye. These buttons help the learners perform appropriate actions and help him move further..
3. Balance between text and images
In eLearning, we use images to educate not to decorate the screen. Images should enhance learning therefore only relevant images need to be included in the content.This will help the learner to understand the information quickly. It’s important to have a balance between text and images because using too much of text or too many images does not help retain knowledge. On the other hand, if the image does not support the content, the learner may get distracted from understanding the content and he may not be visually engaged.
For example, in the below screenshot there is a balance between text and image that not only makes the screen look visually pleasing but also help the learners to understand the content easily.
4. Use appropriate colors
Color is a powerful element that is very useful in making your eLearning course visually rich. Colors can affect the learners’ mood, draw their attention and encourage them to learn even dry content. It is better not to use all the colors in one course and not all colors help in effective learning. Let’s look at an example from one of our courses showing the social media policy guidelines, where red and green colors are used for showing dos and don’ts.
Green – Dark green is cool and light green is a warm color. Dark shades of green add a refreshing look to the course. Lighter shades draw attention and enhance learning outcomes. It is good to state any positives, such as dos/ advantages.
Red – This is a warm color. Red stimulates the mood of the learner and makes them anxious. It’s ideal to show the negative aspects, such as disadvantages/ limitations/ don’ts of something.
Following these tips you can create effective and visually rich eLearning courses. If you have any more tips in your list, please do share with us.