Many believe that developing courses using rapid authoring tools is a cakewalk and that no programming skills are necessary to use these course authoring software. Well, while it is true that rapid authoring tools are very useful, they are certainly not the answer to all the problems faced by eLearning developers. Two major limitations constrain the power of these otherwise highly effective tools.
Let’s see more on these limitations and how they are overcome by our developers.
Templates that prevent a “unique” look
Rapid eLearning tools have inbuilt templates, leaving the developer no other choice but to use them. This could make the courses look “generic” that can lead to low levels of learner motivation. To overcome this problem, our developers performed extensive customizations to create an appealing Graphical User Interface (GUI).
We designed the GUI using Photoshop. Once the design was created, we cropped and saved each element of the GUI design such as Banner, Next, Back, Menu, Audio On/Off buttons, bottom design. And then we imported the design elements of the course GUI into the course and aligned them properly. Hence, the customized GUI looked appealing and engaging.
Unlike Flash, that offers the freedom to create the interactivities of your choice, rapid authoring tools offer limited flexibility to develop interactive courses. We were once asked by a client to develop an interactive eLearning course using Articulate Storyline. The only problem with this requirement was that the desired interactivities could be developed only by using Flash.
It was an uphill task to develop complex interactivities like board games, random quizzing, card games, crosswords, animated simulations using Articulate Storyline. However, our developers created the interactivities using extensive coding and applying logics leaving the client on cloud nine.
Board game interactivity developed in Storyline
To conclude, you can play around with rapid authoring tools, provided you have complete knowledge about them. A creative developer can produce online courses that have all the features of eLearning developed using traditional tools such as Flash. Indeed, a developer is limited only by his creativity and not by his tools. What do you think?