Tips for Creating Online Courses
Creating courses online involves getting your subject matter expertise into a course that takes learners on a logical and well-organised journey. Content that an LMS can understand can be created by using one of the popular authoring tools on the market, such as Adobe Captivate or Articulate Storyline.
For a simpler, text-and-images based course, straightforward documents can be converted to SCORM format with freely available online tools. Alternatively, you can hire the services of an eLearning development company to create the content for you. If your budget will stretch to it, this is a good option.
Otherwise use an authoring tool or simple SCORM conversion of documents. Your course does not necessarily need animations and bells and whistles to be successful, but it does need to be well-organised, appealing, engaging and, above all, useful.
For the course to have value to learners and make them want to buy it, there are a couple of steps to go through before actually creating the course.
Get Inside Your Learners Heads
Rather than thinking about whom you can sell to, it is more productive to think of how your course will give a genuinely valuable and positive result to learners. What is their starting point, what are their problems, issues and needs, how does your course address them, and what is the end result that will open doors for them or change their lives for the better? In other words, make your courses useful to a specific group of people.
Differentiate your offer
Find an angle that makes your course stand out from its competitors. For example, create online courses that offer tips and tricks to save time when working in your area of expertise, provide enlightening case studies, describe common mistakes and how to avoid them, or position your course as an introduction for a particular demographic. Try to avoid generic course descriptions and give learners a glimpse of the tempting path your are offering to lead them along to a desirable outcome.
Write Compelling Content
Here are some tips to sell training courses online that grab the attention of learners and keep them engaged:
- Give clear reasons why they need to learn this. Provide a list of learning goals and outcomes.
- Cut out all non-essential content. Keep it concise.
- Make it interactive. Set frequent tasks like checklists and worksheets that give a sense of progress.
- Split learning content into easily-digestible chunks. Use short paragraphs and bullet points.
- Stimulate more than one sense. Use video, images and audio to communicate knowledge as well as text.
- Frequently repeat key learning points. Set quizzes that test knowledge retention.