Analyze (25% of budget)
Good instructional analysis is the foundation for all phases of a design project. The steps required during the analysis process will differ depending on your unique needs and any existing content you already have in place.
Before embarking on the design of instruction, it is critical to gather all information that supports decisions about strategies, media, and technology. By gathering input from both instructional designers (IDs) and Subject Matter Experts (SMEs) begin by working to identify learning needs, learning objectives, and learning constraints. These guidelines establish a solid base for all subsequent development activities. Throughout the development process, you will be able to return to these guidelines to evaluate the success of the design. By investing the time on a thorough front-end analysis to support the design and development of your eLearning solution, you will be able to better meet the unique needs of your organization.
- During the analysis phase, be sure to review the goals and objectives, evaluate any existing content, identify content gaps, and coordinate obtaining additional relevant content.
Design (30% of budget)
Our design philosophy puts a great deal of thought into content presentation as well as the learner’s movements through course activities, the goal being to make the navigation intuitive so the content remains the primary focus for learners. In short, content can only be as useful as the learner’s ability to get to it.
A good eLearning solution requires more than good content. Identifying and implementing the right types of media and instructional strategy can make all the difference. A good rule of thumb is to ask this question about every interaction in a course: “Does this teach the learner about the content, or about manipulating the interaction itself?” If the learner is only learning how to manipulate an interaction, and not reinforcing cognitive pathways necessary to learning, then the interaction may not be the best use of the learners’ time or bandwidth.
- The design phase is a systematic process of linking learning objectives and content to detailed storyboards and prototypes. IDs should work collaboratively with SMEs to design assessment instruments, exercises, lesson plans and determine or develop any relevant media selections.
- Often during this phase a course shell (or template) is created that aligns with a custom design document that can be populated by SMEs to quickly communicate course content and layout to course developers. This is especially useful when multiple courses are being developed as part of a curriculum.
Develop (35% of budget)
The crafting of truly relevant eLearning interactions is a specialized skill, and a talent. It cannot be achieved with eLearning authorware alone. The most relevant eLearning interactions result from a creative collaboration of subject matter experts and instructional designers.
- In the development phase, IDs working with course developers, create and assemble the content assets, assessment instruments, and interactive learning materials that were blueprinted in the design phase. This is best accomplished as a rapid iterative cycle of development, review and revision.
- Develop prototype (course, or module)
- Review by SME
- Revision of prototype
- Revisions approved by SME
- Full course developed
- Review of full course by SME
Implement (5% of budget)
Taking time to prepare administrators and instructors to support learners throughout their eLearning course/s can make all the difference. It is also important to be sure to capture all relevant data on student performance to support ongoing evaluation and course improvements.
Evaluate (5% of budget)
Implementing and Evaluating should be viewed as ongoing budget items. It is important to revisit to the guidelines established during the Analysis phase and compare that to learner performance.
- Evaluate – A multi step beta testing process should be implemented to evaluate all aspects of the course, both instructional and functional.
- Review of full course
- Revision of full course (in required)
- Revision of full course approved by SME
As a general rule, every available effort, within the given budget, should be made to keep the eLearner engaged. There are various strategies for maintaining learner engagement so it is worthwhile to take the time to determine learner needs and then define the best strategies and Moodle tools to meet those needs. Research has shown that appropriate use of Moodle tools keeps learners interested and motivated, and this increases learning. It takes time to plan, construct, and test such interactions, but they will hold their value.
Check out the below infographic.