Are you a training manager seeking to develop effective eLearning programs in quick time at low cost? How can you get better value for your training dollar? The answer to these questions is rapid eLearning.
Rapid eLearning unlike traditional development of online courses drastically reduces the time taken to develop courses. Rapid eLearning can be used to cut the time taken for developing an online training program by more than 40% when compared to its traditional counterpart. This is because it reduces the number of steps involved in developing the online course. Here is a comparison of rapid eLearning with traditional development of eLearning programs.
|1. Identifying the existing content||1. Content analysis|
|2. Content briefing|
|4. Design GUI and Navigation|
|5. Design interactions|
|2. Identifying existing media||6. Creating media|
|3. Adding assessments||7. Adding assessments|
|4. Choosing the right authoring tool and developing the online course||8. Choosing the right authoring tool and developing the online course|
|5. Deploy||10. Deploy|
So, you can see that rapid eLearning reduces the number of steps involved in development of online courses by half. Now let me share more about each of these steps in rapid eLearning.
Step 1: Identifying the existing content
You know that the learning content is the heart of your online course. You can effectively leverage the existing content that you use such as on-the-job-training (OJT) handouts and material developed for classroom sessions like PowerPoint presentations, product literature in the form of brochures and documents that explain policy and process. You need to:
Evaluate the content for suitability:
You need to check the content to make sure that it is clear and accurate. You also need to see that the content is adequate to develop interactivities and provide the right feedback. You need to fill gaps in the learning content, if any.
Check the content if it is instructionally sound:
You need to be sure that this content has a good flow that supports easy retention. With a well-developed content, you can focus on instructional approach, interactivities, the kind of treatment you can give to the content in order to help learners learn and apply knowledge.
Step 2: Leveraging available media
After making sure that you have right content, you need to identify the media required to create an effective course. Creating new media such as graphics, videos and audio is time consuming and expensive. You can overcome this issue by effectively leveraging the existing media contained in available content such as PowerPoint presentations and literature in the form of PDF and Word documents. This goes a long way in reducing the time and money needed to develop the eLearning program.
Step 3: Creating assessments
You are aware of the importance of assessments in an online course. Once you have identified the learning content and the media, it is time to focus on questions needed to test the learners. You can use questions posed in the classrooms or you may create new assessments depending on the learning outcomes.
Step 4: Choosing the right authoring tool and developing the course
Now that you have identified the content and have the needed media and assessments, it is time to choose the right rapid authoring tool to develop the course. It is no exaggeration to say that the choice of the right rapid authoring tool is the crux of converting your content into effective online training program. You need to keep these 2 important aspects in mind when you select the right authoring tool:
You need to choose an authoring tool depending on your training needs. For instance, you can use Articulate Storyline to develop a demo of the latest features of your product for your sales force in quick time. Or if you have a requirement to train your multilingual global workforce on some mandatory or compliance issues within a very short time, you can use Lectora. In case you have a need for training your staff on a new software application that is critical to your processes and will be implemented across the organization before the next quarter, you can opt for Adobe Captivate. The nature of your training requirement will determine the selection of your tool.
You also need to consider the nature of your learning content. Is the content simple or does your courseware need complex interactivities? For simple pages that do not contain complex interactivities, you might want to consider tools that have certain in-built features such as pre-built templates that cover certain common types of trainings such as Articulate Storyline. If your content is text-heavy and needs quick translations you could go for Lectora. Your broad instructional design strategies should be supported by the tool.
You can develop effective Level 1 and Level 2 courses using rapid authoring tools that are not highly interactive, yet satisfy your learning needs effectively.
Step 5: Deploy the eLearning program
Once the course is developed and approved by you, it is time to deploy the course and mange it efficiently. You may opt to use a Learning Management System (LMS) to effectively administer your eLearning program. You can use open source LMSs such as Moodle to efficiently and cost-effectively manage your online course.
You can reap rich dividends from rapid eLearning by outsourcing the development of your eLearning program to a reputed vendor experienced in providing online corporate training solutions. You can benefit from the eLearning provider’s expertise in converting your learning content into highly effective online programs. Furthermore, the vendor has well-established policies in place which help efficiently manage the development of your online course. You also save on the licensing fee for the authoring tool.
Thus, you can rapidly develop online courses that effectively meet your learning needs at low cost. We’d love to hear what you think.