How to choose a right eLearning Course

Published under Study Effectively On 08 Aug 2017

eLearning has become the talk of the town for educational organizations in the recent times. More and more institutions are now adding eLearning to their arsenal of teaching tools. In this digital age, it is what learners want(Insights report), and is also a smart and cost effective way to learn. Despite all these merits, choosing a right eLearning course nowadays has become harder than ever before. With a plethora of platforms available online, each of them promising significant returns, distinguishing the authentic from the spurious ones can be a daunting task. In fact, today, people with a basic know-how of graphic and web design can create an eLearning course which looks authentic and professional.

Here are a few Tips that will Help you Choose the Right eLearning Course

Look for Personalized eLearning Courses

Steer clear of eLearning courses that follow a standardized and generalized approach. The “one-size-fits-all” technique has become primitive now and is a sure sign of an ordinary eLearning course. Look for courses that have the capability to customize the learning environment according to students' tastes and preferences. Understand yourself and your learning habits (whether you are an auditory learner or a visual one, etc.), and then make sure that the course vendors can provide content in different forms, that is- audio, video, textual or graphical. Opt for vendors who look at students as a varied mix, rather than a homogenous one. Look at the tone they use in their courses. The tone is a major factor in inducing emotion which helps in grasping the information in a better way. Countless studies, research reports, and surveys have found that emotion is a crucial component of the eLearning experience. And finally, enquire whether there is a personalized evaluation plan, and how the feedback mechanisms will be offered. Choose a vendor only if they can tick all these boxes.

Gauge the quality of Instructors

Make sure that you talk to the project managers and instructional designer beforehand to truly assess the quality of the instructors. A professional and experienced vendor would have no qualms having a detailed conversation about the project. If a seller hesitates in introducing his team or vaguely communicates about the project, it is a sure shot sign of a new eLearning vendor. A good eLearning team comprises of eLearning professionals, learning designers, technology experts and quality analysts. Enquire about all these professionals, and their qualifications and experience. You must have a complete knowledge about the team before investing those hard earned dollars.

Check the Reputation of your Service Provider

Enquire about the reputation of service providers. A professional eLearning vendor can provide you with useful references at the drop of a hat. Make sure that you ask for references of companies that belong to the same industry as yours. It is also important to personally call the referenced companies and ask them about their experience with the service provider. Don’t hesitate in asking relevant questions, such as- the quality of the service, the pricing, reliability factor, etc. Do a thorough background research online about the vendors and the companies they referenced.

Place Conditions

This is a crucial step in distinguishing the unprofessional vendors from the professional ones. Place your conditions in front of them before settling on a deal. Ask them for a demo session, and tell them that you will pay for it only if you are satisfied with the project and its outcome. Unprofessional and inexperienced vendors will not agree to this condition as they are not confident about their content. Professionals will negotiate. Also, insist on the detailed course curriculum and authenticity of certifications from authorized bodies. This is a good way to objectively judge their material and make a right decision from it. The willingness of vendors to show their work without any qualms demonstrates their sincerity and commitment in doing business with you. Put yourself on the front foot and do not hesitate in placing conditions in front of them.

Level the Content

In the world of eLearning, there are many levels of the course content. Identify your needs and choose the appropriate content levels according to it. Usually, there are three levels of the eLearning content:

Basic level - a straightforward and quick way to learn basic concepts, it has a lot of static images and multiple choice, and true or false questions. While being low on interactivity, It has its place in the eLearning methods as a quick and easy-to-access starting point.

Intermediate level - courses at this level contain audio and video, and some basic animations and transitions. It is more interactive as it is accompanied by narration and “click and reveal” interactions. It is a cheap and effective middle ground that can offer you a richer experience of learning.

Complex level - at this pinnacle of learning levels the techniques become sophisticated and creates a more complex and interactive learning experience. It extensively uses audio, video, transitions and simulations. It is equipped with branched quizzes and scenario-based questions that will allow you to explore multiple paths and feedback levels.

You need to know at which level your course falls in to identify the time and efforts required for the completion of your course.

Summing Up

Choosing the right eLearning course is a thorough and precise process. You don’t want to invest all that money and realize midway that you had made the wrong decision; therefore abandoning the project in the middle or completing it with disinterest. A good eLearning course can work wonders for you, but a bad one is sure to disengage and miseducate, thereby, wasting a lot of time and money. Make sure you ask the right questions, do proper research and gain as much information about the course and the eLearning team as you can, before putting in your precious time and money.