Beginner’s guide to creating an online course
Congratulations to you for deciding to create an eLearning course for many curious and enthusiastic learners around the world.
Online courses are a great way to pass on your knowledge in a certain field to people who want to learn more about it. Plus, these courses can become a great source of income once people start liking your content. If you’re just starting out creating online courses, you’re probably stuck because you don’t know where to start. Let us make it easy for you. Follow the steps below to create a great online course.
Decide on a specific topic
To get started, let’s decide on a topic for your course. So, for your first lesson, we suggest you pick a topic that interests you the most and is the most familiar to you. You must have a good knowledge of the subject. You can even do a little more research to improve your knowledge on the subject.
It’s important that you enjoy the whole process of creating a course, so pick a topic you’ll enjoy teaching. You can tackle difficult and unfamiliar topics later as you get better at creating courses. Start with something in your comfort zone.
While deciding on the subject, try to make it unique. Check out other courses that cover the same subject and see if there’s a gap you can fill. An aspect that no one has yet addressed. This will give you an advantage as your offering will be different from others. If you can’t, that’s okay, there are other ways to make your course unique. We will discuss this throughout this article.
Understand your audience
Once you have a topic, the next thing you need to do is research your audience thoroughly. Since you are at the beginner level, proper research can be difficult, but not impossible. You can have a word with your audience. For example, if you are creating a course for children of a certain age, you can get in touch with them and try to understand what they can expect from a course like yours. If possible, get information on things like preferred course format, graphics, do they need additional offline notes, etc. You can even bring this to discussion forums like Quora or Reddit and get useful information from your target audience.
Determine the objective of your online course
Your course should always have a direction. Your audience should know what the course is aiming for so that they complete the course to achieve the ultimate goal. Decide what you want to do with your course. For example, you are doing a drawing course and the subject you have chosen is graphite drawing. Your goal can be to teach all the basics of graphite drawing or advanced techniques. Your goal could also be to teach only how to create shape using light and dark shades. The more specific you are with your goal, the better. An aimless course is never worth creating or taking. So set a specific goal and make sure that goal is communicated to your audience in your descriptions or preview videos.
Outline and storyboard
Mindmap the whole course. You should never start filming or creating slides without a concrete plan. Make a very detailed plan. It should contain the list of modules your course is divided into, the aim of each module, additional materials you will provide, any quizzes between modules, and basically everything you want to do with the course.
Once your outline is complete, it’s time to create a storyboard. A storyboard is a step you can skip, but if you do, it will make the whole process of creating the course easier and more organized. A storyboard is great for creating videos, it gives you an idea of how your course will look.
It’s time to start creating your course and for that you will need an authoring tool. What is that? An authoring tool helps you create a professional looking course without having the knowledge of editing and programming. For instance, Articulate 360 is an authoring tool that offers lots of templates that you can simply customize according to your needs and easily create an outstanding course. You might also like their pre-made courses and lessons. There are many authoring tools in the market, choose the one that is suitable for beginners and also within your budget.
Get feedback and share the course
Once you have created your course, you can share it with some of your friends or the people you have interviewed to understand your audience. Get their feedback. Ask them what you can improve. People may not be able to tell you what you can improve on right away. In this case, you can offer them choices.
Make improvements based on your feedback and share the course. You can choose an efficient and budget-friendly learning management system to share your course. Also, when choosing the LMS, make sure that it is an LMS preferred by most people in your niche and must also have good analytics features.
At the end of the line
Creating a course should be fun. Get rid of any burden you may have. There are many tools available today that can help you create a course. However, it is important to know where to start and how to proceed. Following these steps will prove to be a good start for your incredible journey of sharing knowledge with the world.