Educators put a lot of work and time into developing practical online courses. However, they get stale after some time, and they need to revisit to keep them relevant, effective, and engaging. Revamping online courses is a good course management practice.
Regular course updates ensure the content remains resourceful to your audience. You can use several tips and eLearning trends to update your online courses so your audience gets the most out of them.
Why You Should Revamp Old eLearning Courses
Instructors must revamp their online courses to support learning and development. Failure to update learning content impedes effective learning. Here are reasons to update learning content and consider applying the latest eLearning trends.
1. To Make Content Relevant and Contextual to the Times
Technology is evolving fast, and there is a need to change the content to be in tune with new technology. For instance, if previous content was in PDF format, you could change it to more engaging formats like audio files, infographics, and animations.
Courses become dated due to advancements in technology, changes in curriculum, and changes in learning content. You can revamp courses to meet relevant policies, ensure timeliness, and meet current teaching and learning methodologies and strategies.
2. To Make eLearning Content Responsive to all Devices
Earlier learning content was for laptops and desktops. This means learners trying to access the content on mobile phones will not get the same experience.
Today, most learners access learning materials using their mobile phones. So, updating content to be mobile responsive will allow learners to consume content on all devices in a fluid and comfortable experience.
3. To Give the Design a Fresh Look
A revamp will give the course a fresh look. Updating the design and ensuring that hyperlinks and navigation controls work will allow learners to navigate the content easily. A fresh design will supplement your audience’s learning needs.
Elearning Trends and Tips To Revamp Your Online Courses
Use the following tips to give your course a makeover after it exceeds its shelf life.
1. Conduct a Survey and Analysis of Existing Online Course
Online course analytics is one of the greatest eLearning trends. It is most beneficial because it helps you identify where the online courses are currently and the gaps. This will tell you how much work to do and the best strategies to revamp the courses. Do an analysis that involves surveying learners to get insights into how you can improve the course.
You can ask them what would improve the online courses and use the feedback to revamp them. You can deliver the survey through email as it is where the courses are also delivered. Ask scaled questions to determine the satisfaction level of your audience with the course.
Use open-ended or multiple-choice questions to get more detailed responses. Create room for criticism to identify areas of improvement. Use the data you will collect from the survey to develop strategies for revamping the content.
The best way to collect relevant learning analytics is to implement effective methods to collect student feedback and use such data to improve your courses.
2. Keep the Course Current
In addition to using data to guide the revamping efforts, keep the content current. Identify changes in your field, whether it is new events, changes in terminologies, or policies, and integrate them into the course.
Ensure the course covers the trending topics. For instance, if it is an epidemiology course, add content about Covid-19. Include all relevant concepts and developments in the field.
To do this, make time for research to stay updated on what is happening in your industry to find the missing information in your course content.
Your audience engages better with current and relevant information; keeping current will position your courses as reliable and trustworthy.
3. Replace Large Chunks of Text with Bite-Sized Content
Micro-learning is one of the most prominent eLearning trends of the year and has been proven to increase learning effectiveness by 17 percent. Breaking down the content in your online courses will make the information more digestible. It will also make it easy for learners with busy schedules to work at a pace that suits them. Learners remember information presented in small chunks.
Bite-sized information is suitable for refresher training and enhances engagement. Smaller chunks of information are more mobile responsive; since the demand for mobile learning increases, mobile responsive courses are vital.
Breaking the modules into smaller and consumable chunks makes the courses mobile responsive, and navigable on different devices. To chunk content effectively, identify what learners know and information of interest to them.
For the latter, you can provide links for additional resources in case they need them after interacting with the critical content. Break the courses into themes, subtopics, and subcategories with specific concepts.
4. Add Gamification Elements to the Course
Gamifying online eLearning courses involves integrating games and activities to increase engagement. This eLearning trend in online courses improves learning outcomes through increased engagement, attention, motivation, and information retention.
Gamification in learning also instills skills such as teamwork, problem-solving, and collaboration. There are several ways to gamify your online courses to increase their appeal by making learning fun and innovative.
Use point systems to incorporate competition with other learners or with self. A good example is adding interactive assessments that rate the speed at which learners answer quizzes.
You could also incorporate animated rewards for the completion of milestones. The rewards could be medals, certificates, or points.
Integrate social concepts such as splitting learners into teams for competition or tasks to make the course fun.
5. Incorporate Videos into the Course Materials
Videos are one of the biggest eLearning trends and are essential in the learning process. Adding videos to your online courses enhances communication as the auditory and visual elements help them understand processes better than reading text alone.
Integrating videos allows learners to explore different learning styles; some prefer reading, and others prefer listening. Visual elements are easier to remember, and integrating videos in the course materials enhances information retention.
Ensure the videos are responsive to different devices to allow learners access. Keep the videos short for better engagement and to manage the file size.
They should also be clear for easy consumption. Keep the background music in the videos simple and not distracting.
6. Integrate Infographics and Visual Elements
Adding images and visual elements like infographics in the online courses benefits their appeal and engagement. Well-executed visual elements draw and motivate learners to engage. They also enhance their attention and increase their memory retention capacity.
Often, data displayed in text in online course materials are challenging to visualize. Infographics help you illustrate data and statistics for easy consumption and analysis.
Infographics and images eliminate unnecessary details and simplify information. You can explain concepts more quickly with visual aid and occupy less space. For instance, you can use them to make comparisons that are not confusing for learners.
They are also effective in displaying information that involves related concepts, making consolidating ideas easy.
Use infographics when sharing events spanning different timelines—for instance, the history of a company or a person. You can use images to compare data, for instance, when explaining the difference between two or more concepts.
Images and infographics can help you break down complex processes in your online courses for easy understanding.
7. Improve the Aesthetics of the Course Design
While most instructors consider functionality the primary concern in the delivery of online courses, visual design is imperative to engagement and the learning outcome. Learners rely on the design and aesthetics of your online course to create a connection with the resources.
Presentation and aesthetics are as important as the quality of the content in your online courses. Improving your online course design to become more aesthetically appealing is necessary.
Keep the design simple and straightforward to avoid overwhelming and distracting learners—balance the graphics and text to avoid clutter and chaos.
The courses should be easily navigable; use buttons that draw learners’ attention but are also easy to use and clear. Ensure the placement of buttons is strategic and not distracting for the learners. Avoid adding unnecessary buttons as they impede the navigability of the course and cause confusion.
Ensure consistency of information throughout the course. The font size and type and color scheme should be consistent. Provide an outline or table of content for the course materials to enhance their appeal and keep the courses organized and easy to use.
Keep the course layout simple and aligned. Instead of creating a different section for resources and references, include hyperlinks in the text to keep the coursework clean and increase the convenience of accessing information.
Declutter your online course by removing unnecessary content and elements that are no longer important. That is, statistics, processes, compliance regulations, and visuals. This will give the design of the course a makeover and increase value for your audience.
8. Integrate Adaptive Learning Paths
The more personalized the student journey is, the more effective learning will be. Hence why implementing adaptive learning paths into online courses has become one of the most prominent eLearning trends.
Integrating adaptive learning paths in your online course provides learners with personalized learning experiences. You can improve the online courses by creating an adaptive learning environment that caters to the different students’ learning preferences and styles.
Creating flexible learning paths will stimulate engagement and enhance the learning outcomes. You can make your online courses adaptive by creating additional content and topics that would interest them. Learners can access the content by clicking buttons or using tooltips and sidebars; if they already have the information, they can skip it.
Incorporate adaptive or personalized assessments in the course to cater to the varying learners’ competence. For instance, instead of having one exam for an entire course, break it down into multiple assessments learners can do to test their understanding of specific topics.
Computer-generated personalized assessments will adjust in difficulty level as the learner progresses with the test.
You can guide learners to courses that speak to their needs by integrating a querying tool in your online course to create a learner’s profile. Based on the profile created, you can recommend custom courses that align with their needs.
Provide bite-sized, open-ended, and small courses with well-organized themes and topics to allow learners to choose courses that will fill their knowledge gaps. You can also add chatbots that double as virtual teaching assistants to support students by delivering personalized content informed by their queries.
10. Multiproduct Learning models
With the rise of eLearning, many have come to think of online education as online courses, and tend to consume educational material in solely this format. However, as we’ve seen new eLearning trends appear, we are seeing more and more eLearning businesses broaden their offering to a multiproduct model. Rather than only offering a pre-recorded online course with lessons and quizzes, many educators are now complementing learning materials with online communities, membership programs, ebooks, and private coaching.
Not only does this deliver an improved learning experience to their audience, but it also expands the educators’ monetization possibilities.
Implement these eLearning Trends and Revamp Your Old Courses.
Outdated online courses can affect learners’ experience and undermine learning outcomes. Revamping old online courses and keeping up with the latest eLearning trends is a critical element of course management that ensures the learning materials meet the learners’ needs.
A needs analysis will help identify gaps in the course and emerging learning needs that will inform your revamping plan. Keep the course content current and update the learning templates to meet the current learning needs.
Make the courses more interactive by incorporating gamification elements, integrating personalized learning paths, and updating the templates. The tips above will give you a good starting point for improving your online courses for better learning outcomes. Need more help? Make sure you reach out to our LMS consultants for advice in building your eLearning site.