Picking an Authoring Tool for HTML eLearning Development

HTML eLearning
Picking an Authoring Tool for HTML eLearning Development

The easy availability of various types of e-learning tools that facilitate the formulation of innovative and effective e-learning courses is beneficial to all instructional designers. Articulate Storyline, Captivate, and Lectora are some of such versatile e-learning authoring tools that have influenced the present-day HTML e-learning arena considerably. All of these are resourceful authoring tools and have ready templates and all other related resources that assist the creation of top class e-learning documentations. However, it is good to know a few basic details about them, before picking up one from the bunch for your specific project requirement.

File Size and Functioning Methods are Crucial

In the present world, the bulk of the online consumer activities are happening via mobile gadgets, because of the advent of Smartphones and Tabs. E-learning field is also not an exception. Hence, the overall functioning methods of e-learning courses including the file size and the transfer speed matters a lot.

Though Articulate Storyline and Captivate are akin in loading the framework files just only one time and after that the related content files page after page, there is a slight difference in the ensuing action. Articulate Storyline is a better bet for animation works and heavy media. Captivate publishes the content as images, and this causes the enlargement of the file size which consequently will influence the performance. However, Lectora has a different reloading mode; here, the framework files are loaded as new page loads and due to this functionality, a bit more time is needed to load the file. Moreover, there can be interruptions in the visual flow.

Comparison Regarding Graphics and Animations

Instructional designers can easily create the basic shapes by using any of these three authoring tools, as they are incorporated with a special tool box. In addition to this, there is a built-in animation preset in all of the three tools with which animations can be created with ease. However Captivate has a better library and the strength is 50+ presets. Lectora has 30+ presets, whereas the Articulate Storyline has only nearly 10 presets. Articulate Storyline and Captivate are also integrated with timeline feature, and this helps instructional designers to bring in custom animation. On the other hand, there is no timeline feature in Lectora.

Interactive Element

Captivate, and Articulate Storyline are incorporated with bigger interactive template collections than Lectora; both of them have more than 20 templates. Though customization on fonts, colors and texts can be made to Captivate templates, you can not change the primary nature. Yet another speciality of Captivate templates is that, you can draw on the effectiveness of externally created interactive pluggable widgets. Articulate Storyline is also adaptable and so you can develop bespoke templates and can keep them for imminent applications. Lectora is also adaptable, but has comparatively lesser template collection.

Synchronization of Audio and Video Features

Articulate Storyline and Captivate facilitate the synchronization of audio and video features, as both of them have timelines. This is not the case with Lectora and so, audio and video synchronization is a bit tougher here.

Simulations

As far as the simulation facility is concerned, all the three (Articulate Storyline, Captivate, and Lectora) are well-suited. That being said, Lectora is not incorporated with an inbuilt screen, as in the case of Articulate Storyline and Captivate. But, you can share your created content using Lectora on all commonly accepted social media platforms such as ‘Facebook’ and ‘Twitter’.

Incorporating Quizzing Facility

Articulate Storyline and Captivate gives you the option of picking from different kinds of question templates.

The Process of Localization

Localization can be easily brought in by using all of these three authoring tools and they will support all major languages including the right-to-left languages like Arabic, Hebrew, and Farsi.

In a nutshell, it can be seen that each of these elearning tools have various user-friendly features and it is up to you to decide, which one to use for your specific requirement.

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Things to Test in Multi-Platform E-Learning Course

E-Learning Course These days, you get computing devices in all different shapes and sizes. Along with computers and Mac, there are laptops, smartphones and tablets, which have slowly become the most popular devices. As such, testing of devices has become very essential for all purposes, including eLearning. One requires the same behaviour and performance across all different devices and operating systems. Your authoring tool is not able to provide you this, so you need to check it yourself. Here are a few methods to ensure that it is functioning as expected on the various devices:

  • Is the text readable?
    You could use a larger font size to make sure that the text is readable on devices of any resolution. Easing formatting, and auto-resizing text boxes are also useful.
  • Content Alignment
    Check the content on all devices, platforms, and browsers to show how the alignment varies and adjust it accordingly. This is because of the different HTML rendering engine and JavaScript interpretation for each of them, and you need to adjust your material accordingly.
  • Area for target areas for touch and select
    Touch and select controls may be quite difficult on smaller devices. So, make sure you leave enough space for user controls. Also, leave space between the different elements so that mistakes can be avoided.
  • Layer and group the navigation controls
    Take out the different navigation controls and group them logically. Layer them according to the frequency of usage. You can also enable or hide any elements based on the devices used.
  • Offer visual cues
    Provide visual cues to help the users understand the specific gestures used as interactivities in your course. They need to be clear and explicit to help guide them with the functionality.
  • Use device appropriate instructions
    The functionality and user interface would change depending on the device. So, use specific instructions for every device. As an example, on laptops and computers one needs to use any key, whereas on touch devices, you just need to tap. You could also use generic instructions that would be common all through.
  • Use suitable interactivity for all devices
    Make sure the interactivities work smoothly on all devices. You can also use additional features absed on the kind of device used.
  • The relationship and meaning between all parts of the course need to be maintained
    The layout needs to be checked to ensure proper sequence is maintained on every device. The location and the references must match, and also enough space must be left to make everything clear and distinct.
  • Course Performance
    The eLearning projects must perform well irrespective of the device or operating system. You need to control all memory lag issues and make sure no crashes occur.

It is not possible to have a standard device. So, you need to optimise your content for every device available. Use the above tips and ensure that your course runs smoothly no matter what device is used.

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