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Tips to create easily digestible online courses

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John Sherman
2017-10-18

Are your e-learning courses really helping your employees learn?

Everybody knows that e-learning courses can really step up your employee training and development program. They’re easy to access anytime and anywhere, plus they save your company money. Everybody’s a winner, right?

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While all these online course advantages are true, they only apply if your employees are actually learning from the content.

For your e-learning courses to really be effective for employee training, the ideas and concepts that you use must be easy to understand and engaging, as well as provide value. You want your course to be interesting and user-friendly – not boring and complicated.

After all, learning is all about helping your employees build their skills. If they can’t understand or pay attention to your online course, they aren’t going to be motivated or more knowledgeable by the end of it.

So, you’ll be dying to know how you can create online courses that are easy to digest and still provide all the valuable information to be useful. Read on for our top tips!

Provide Bitesize Learning

You can’t sit for hours staring at a screen and expect to take in all the information. If you give your employees an online course that’s long in duration, never mind the content, they won’t engage fully with all the concepts that are presented to them.

You’ve got to break it down and keep it simple. You don’t want to overload your employees with too much information - they just aren’t going to retain pages and pages of text over a long period of time.

It’s well-known that the average attention span is around 20 minutes. So, stick to 20 minutes for being the maximum length of an e-learning course. That way training is more valuable and employees are more likely to retain the ideas you present them with.

You can cut the length of your courses simply by changing the way you present your topics. Use bullet points, lists and subheadings, as well as graphs, to present all the statistics or information they need. It’s a quick way to show data and easier for everybody to understand.

Remember, when it comes to e-learning courses, it’s all about quality and not quantity.

Create a Bigger Picture

You’ll find that you remember something better if you have a visual to associate the concept with. This also applies to learning new facts and skills. Providing plain text page after page isn’t going to grab an employee’s attention or help them to retain the information.

But, if you align an image with this text, you can link them together to create a picture. This is going to be more memorable for employees and allow them to recall this information when they need it in real life.

You can use anything you think your employees will remember. This can be a flowchart to break down ideas or even a cartoon. It can be funny, brightly colored or somebody famous.

It’s all about building an image in your employee’s head that is going to help them understand the main content and reinforce concepts.

Have a User-Friendly Interface

Let’s face it - when it comes to learning, you’ve got to make it simple. Nobody wants to spend half their time trying to work the e-learning course before they learn anything.

Sure, an intricate design and lots of fancy features look great, but it subtracts from what really matters – learning.

The best way to create online courses and make sure they’re user-friendly is to think like a new learner – don’t assume everybody is already tech savvy.

You want your e-learning course to be beneficial for all employers – not just the ones that know how to navigate around the place.

Make sure your e-learning course is easy to use and simple. Use simple buttons and arrows to point users in the right direction and keep things flowing. In addition, be sure not to overload pages with lots of information either. Keep things basic and you are on to a winner.

Use Animation and Videos

A lot of people would rather watch the movie than read the book. The same idea applies to e-learning. If employees just see pages of text, it’s going to stress them out before they even begin. They might end up not doing it altogether.

But, if you have short videos on a subject, employees are going to be more willing to watch and listen, following the story and learning along the way.

Creating scenarios helps to make a connection with learners and ideas can resonate with them. This will make it easier for employees to absorb any difficult concepts and be able to apply it to work situations in real life.

Make it Fun

Last, but definitely not least, make your e-learning course fun for your employees. You don’t want your employee training to feel like a chore – you want to motivate your staff and encourage them to develop their skills.

Having quizzes at the end of content is a great way to test their knowledge and make them engage more with the course.

Games are also a great way to make learning enjoyable. Everybody loves to earn a badge of honor for all their hard work and compare scores with colleagues!

Don’t rush to make your e-learning courses available on your LMS – think about how this content will be perceived by your employees and whether it’s really going to help you achieve your business goals first.

It’s important to make sure online courses don’t just provide you with everything you need to know about a topic. It’s got to break it down, explain and demonstrate the ideas so employees can easily understand and remember them.

By following our top tips, you can make sure your e-learning courses are easy to digest and benefit your business all year round!

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