Factors effecting cost of Elearning

Elearning

“Costing e-Learning is much like peeling an onion… there are many layers, they don’t ever seem to end, and sometimes it really smells. … if you understand the variables involved in determining costs you can take the magic right out of the process. Don’t be misled that it’s easy though; there are a lot of variables to consider!”

With the advent and proliferation of Elearning, The most remarkable feature which is attributed to the Elearning content development is the cost effectiveness of Elearning training delivery. But it’s not as simple as it is stated above and there are many aspects and dimensions which will form the final quotation of costing and implementation. And that again says that Elearning training will always remain to be more cost effective then the instructor based training delivery but the dimensions crucial to be mentioned here will play decisive role in understanding the different ways of variations in Elearning course development to make things clearer and transparent.

The following are few of the important aspects impacting cost of Elearning course development.

The most crucial aspect impacting cost of Elearning course development is Graphics and Multimedia. Since the instructors are unavailable in this mode of training and learning, the interactive addition of multimedia and Graphics compensates the absence of instructors and makes the learning and training more interactive, exhaustive and effective.

In other words we can say that the complexity and simplicity of Multimedia and Graphics will directly impact the cost of Elearning course development and the varied dimensions related to Multimedia and Graphics would the following dimensions:

  • Animated video editing
  • Enhancement and editing of the content
  • Custom made narration
  • Production of custom made video and 3d Animation

Here it is extremely important to mention that complexity or variation in context of Multimedia and Graphics will have strong impact on final costing of the product or the online content and delivery.

In case of linear course development, where the simple text based assessment is involved as the navigation would be standard and typical templates would be used for course development and in turn would take the costing towards the lower spectrum. But when we talk about the training with varied decision points and in that case different custom mapping would be created leaving no room or less possibility of re using the already existing templates.

The Elearning course development where there are possibilities of conditional branching, the cost of Elearning development will surely shoot up. These types of advanced course development would have Large number of hands on exercises, advanced level of navigation, custom pages and conditional interactive components.

Development time for instructional design

The time spent in designing the course ware is crucial from the inception of storyboard to the completion of final content or we can say in other words the kind of effort needed to complete the content plays a decisive role in the cost of Elearning development.

Here again there are some specification as to how the Elearning course development will take shape and what are the other dimensions being involved in overall costing of the Elearning content.

If the basic structure is not ready and there are no storyboards existing, the time and effort would be more and thus the costing would go higher, while in case of basic structure and storyboard in place will speed up the process of content development and would lower the cost of courseware development.

As in the case where there is no structure ready or the storyboard not in place will increase the number of subject matter expert and instructional design hours, resulting in increased cost of the whole development process. In case of highly specialized training modules, the time consumption increases manifolds to facilitate planning and implementation as the content does not exist, except in the imagination of the subject matter experts so planning here again plays an important role in time consumption and formulation of the desired content requirement. In this scenario again the cost goes really high.

The other crucial aspect affecting the cost of Elearning content development would be standards compliance, usability testing etc, which is supposed to be added in overall and final costing of the Elearning content development.

Addressing all the above mentioned specification for content development will make the process of Elearning development effective and user friendly would help the industry to be competent enough to take up the challenges in smooth way and deliver performance and competitive advantage as well.

The understanding of the above mentioned guidelines will enable the industry to have uniform playing fields for all the vendors, in turn would standardize the process as a whole.

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Is online education taking over the conventional mode of education?

Online EducationOnline education has shown tremendous popularity among all the different age groups. The last decade had been instrumental in popularizing the concept of online learning and education. The reason being the demand for convenient learning at individual pace and availability had been pivotal in making it so relevant in today’s time. The time has changed tremendously and people have become more aware to keep themselves abreast with advancement and development of technology, courses and training as a continuous process.

The changing time has thrown challenges for learning and continuous advancement in career. The conventional organization doesn’t offer much of flexibility in terms of individual pace and accessibility when people are working at different levels of their careers. It becomes difficult to peruse courses in conventional organization as they have certain limitation in regards to attendance and access to the material and faculty members. Under these circumstances online learning comes into picture and offers respite from the limitation of conventional education system and makes it convenient for the learner to follow the dream of enhancement at all the levels and profiles.

The greatest advantage of the online learning is to have the class anywhere in the world and enrollment in the courses across the globe without being physically present, so it makes it more versatile and compatible for students to learn and grow professionally and academically. The web based courses are planned and executed in a way to have self paced convenient and comprehensive learning. With the introduction of online assignments and evaluation the online learning has become more authentic. At the same time courses and assignments are designed in a way to give flexibility to learners on all the possible levels without compromising on the content. The process of online learning makes it extremely convenient for the instructors and evaluators to use the material extensively without being worried about reproducing it. And then bringing about changes through the process of editing and enhancement on a regular basis keeps the material updated.

The other remarkable development is the minimization of papers in the learning process and then sharing of learning material among learners becomes convenient and easy through web. And then to get the questions answered on a more diverse and detailed ways through different people around the world. The online learning has made the interaction across the globe very easy as it gives an opportunity to benefit and enhance the content with the development happening in any particular field, at any particular time. So now we don’t need to wait for the books to be published on different topics but to enroll ourselves on any desired course throughout the globe.

The cost effectiveness is also considered to be one of the major selling points for online education as it allows learners to access the material without traveling to different parts of the world. In turn saving time and money and making life more productive.
The coming years will completely dimorph learning process. And online classroom or virtual classroom teaching is going to give the conventional methods and organization a run for their money. Gradually the online education would play a major, diverse, decisive and comprehensive role in the field of education. It makes education accessible, affordable, flexible and time saving.

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Six Online Training Dos and Don’ts

Online training has come up as the blessing for those who cannot take regular classes or want to continue their education after a break. Online training is accompanied with many advantages which has made it very popular among learners. In spite of various benefits it is very important for the learners to introspect the need and the type of course they want to do and thus do proper research before taking the course.

Online training can be very exciting for some but it can be frustrating and discouraging for others. Online learning being very flexible and convenient but it keeps the learner away from the benefits of the conventional classroom training. In this article, we will discuss the basic six online training do’s and don’ts which should be considered by any learner before taking the online course.

Dos for the online training

  • Do a thorough research about the educational background and assess your need for the online training and your goal you need to achieve after doing the course. Do find out the skills programs and degrees you need to achieve your goals.
  • Do a proper research about all the courses available and find out about their authenticity, their quality, market reputation, placements and much more before the final enrollment.
  • Do prepare yourself to dedicate about 5 to 14 hours a week on a course depending on the need.
  • Do develop a good habit of checking your mails at least once in a day for online training.
  • Do plan your time in order to take out sufficient time for training and keeping the balance between other work at workplace and home.
  • Do plan for your seating arrangement as it should be comfortable and quite place so that you should not get disturbed and distracted while taking an online course.

Don’ts for the online training

  • Don’t treat yourself as anonymous while taking an online course; in fact be more interactive with your instructor and also your classmates as compared to the traditional classroom environment.
  • Don’t feel shy or hesitate in asking anything from your instructor if you have any problem with the course or the technology used.
  • Don’t take the courses lightly as it requires same kind of dedication and involvement as is required in the traditional way. Only the way to deliver the course has changed but the content is more or less similar.
  • Don’t be just a passive learner. Always find out ways to be more and more interactive as it will give you better results.
  • Don’t put yourself in the habit of procrastinate as it will make you overburdened with lots of learning at a time. So set your goals and adhere to the timeline to finish the course in time.

And last but not the least, don’t get discouraged if the online training doesn’t work for you because there are many other ways to learn and you can opt for them.

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