Seven ways to improve your eLearning course today.

What test, you ask?

The success test. Does it work? Does the audience like it and find it helpful? How do you know?

Your course is never really done, even if you’ve clicked the publish button. It needs occasional preening and polishing to stay relevant, effective and keep up with an ever-changing environment.

But that doesn’t mean it has to be a 3-month project. There are many quick updates you make in a day or two that will have an immediate impact on the the performance of your course and results.

There’s always room for improvement. Here are 7 things you can address to quickly improve an eLearning course.

  • Make it shorter. We all know how attention spans are nowadays. Take a look at your course and see if there’s any “fat” you can trim to make it shorter. Something almost always jumps out when viewed with a fresh set of eyes.
  • Replace cheesy clipart or stock photography. Generally, free clipart or stock photos are not only lame, but send a message that the training content was hastily slapped together. Graphics and photography are great, but should enhance what’s on the screen.
  • Break up busy or content-heavy slides. Look over each slide/screen of your course and break apart any that are too content-heavy. Limit each slide to one idea with a supporting visual.
  • Add an assessment. If you haven’t, you want to add at least one assessment question or exercise to help gauge whether the course is effective. Is the audience comprehending the material presented?
  • Collect feedback. Find out what your audience thought of your course. Did they find it helpful? Did they learn something new? Will they be able to apply the new knowledge in their jobs?
  • Follow up after training. It’s not a safe assumption that your learners will remember everything covered in your course, or that they know how to apply it. It’s important to follow up.
  • Create a few pieces of reminder content or post-training assessment questions and keep in touch with the audience in the weeks/months immediately following the training.
  • Review your learning objective. Don’t have a learning objective? Create one! If your course was created with an objective in mind, review it. Does it still make sense for your organization and your audience? Is your course meeting it? It’s okay (and encouraged) to make adjustments as needed.

It also helps to get outside perspectives. Just as it’s recommended to ask someone to proofread a piece of writing, if you’ve authored an eLearning course, your perspective won’t be as fresh as someone who did not work on the project with you.

Don’t hesitate to ask others for suggestions on how to implement any of the improvements listed above.

photo credit: Seven