Are you new to e-learning courseware development? Never developed an online learning before? Have no formal skills in crafting e-learning materials? Developing learning material that is effective can be a little daunting for first-timers. This is especially true if you are planning to develop e-learning.
But don’t worry. I have compiled a list of some indispensible websites where you’ll find tips, shortcuts, and techniques to become a successful developer. Let this blog be your guide to create your first online course. Let’s jump right in.
These are the free online sites I have come across which cover a wide variety of topics. The listing is in no particular order.
Note: All subheadings are clickable.
1. Instructional Design
Instructional design is the methodology of designing content in a way that helps learners learn quickly and effectively. Good instructional designing ensures the delivery of high-quality and interactive online learning courses for your learners.
Here are a few websites you can refer to gain more insights on Instructional Design.
Cathy Moore is a “fellow enemy of boring training”. She is globally recognized for her passion to improve business performance through her innovative designs. Cathy introduced the corporate world to Action Mapping, a ‘model of training design used to improve performance’. Check out her blog to know more.
With a mission to Empower professionals to develop talent in the workplace, ATD is the “world’s largest organization dedicated to those who develop talent (skills and knowledge of employees) in organizations”. They support the learning community through their research, books, education programs, webcasts, and events.
Access their website here.
CommLab India is a global e-learning company known for creatively combining the best practices of adult learning with technology to provide effective training solutions – anytime, anywhere, and on any device. It has delivered high-impact training for Product Sales, Software, and Compliance to 100+ organizations in close to 30+ countries.
Skim through their e-learning instructional design blogs to gain a better understanding on designing top-notch digital courses.
2. Authoring Tools
Choosing a good authoring tool is very important to develop effective online learning. You choose a wrong tool and it can cost you your e-learning dream. There are many authoring tools available in the market today.
Articulate Storyline helps you create interactive online learning quickly and easily. It publishes courses in HTML5 for mobile browsers, lets you easily translate courses for learners across the globe, and publishes SCORM- and AICC-compliant content for your Learning Management System (LMS).
Join their community for e-learning developers – E-learning Heroes – and access hundreds of e-learning examples and connect with other e-learning professionals.
Adobe Captivate is often seen as the leading ‘Screen casting‘ software by the e-learning community. This tool can be used to capture screen/software simulations, develop quizzes and much more. Adobe Captivate allows you to create e-learning, end-to-end, for any device. Create responsive interactive simulation-based e-learning content with a variety of “eye-catching quizzes, using out-of-the-box templates.
Here is an example course built using Adobe Captivate – Scheduling Sales Meeting in MS Outlook.
Lectora is a simple, yet powerful desktop authoring tool which allows you to create text-heavy courses and mobile learning (m-learning) courses easily. It stands by the motto Design once, Distribute everywhere, which literally means that you only need to design your course once, and then it adjusts the tablet and phone views.
Check a few examples of e-learning courses created using Lectora Inspire.
3. Learning Management System (LMS)
An LMS is a software application used to administer, deliver, publish, and track your e-learning courses. There are quite a few LMSs available in the market, but Moodle ‘stands out in the crowd’ because (A) it’s free and open-source and (B) it’s easy to setup.
It is used by plenty of organizations for e-learning and training purposes. Moodle has most of what you would expect from an LMS such as progress tracking, leaderboards, support for online/web classes. It is supported by a huge, active online community with tons of plug-ins to customize as per your business needs.
4. Mobile Learning
Mobile learning is the new way of training your learners. It known for its ease of use and portability options (among other benefits). No wonder it has grabbed the attention of many an organization to train their employees.
I have come across three websites which are more than enough to quench your thirst for mobile learning.
And if that’s not enough, here’s a comprehensive eBook – Mobile Learning 101 – to get you started with Mobile learning design and development.
I hope these indispensible sources are sufficient to give you a deeper understanding of how to develop a good online learning course.