Sounds complicated, right? Imagine you have all the information for your e-learning course, and now you have to decide how to place the information on each screen. Do you know how to do this more efficiently? It’s as easy as following these instructions!
Organize your information
The first thing you have to do is organize the information. Decide how many chapters you want, and how many bullet points in each chapter. Now that you have the information at hand, think about navigating through your course. Will it be straightforward, where students will go from A to Z? Or, will students go from A to B to reach C, and then return to A? Your decision will affect the screen design, so think about how navigating will go.
When you’ve decided and organized the information, decide the number of screens for each module according to the amount of information you will present. Don’t worry if you are unsure if the information should go on 4 or 5 screens. It is more important that you split up the information and provide a goal for each screen. You can change the screens later if necessary.
Choose your resources according to the learning goal
Decide which learning resources you will use on each screen:
- Are you providing information or proposing an activity?
- Which is the best way to display the information? Paragraphs, bullet points, images?
- Is interaction required at this point?
Choose the best resources for your learning goals: Are you teaching the rational features of a product and need impact? Or, is your course more emotional and you want to engage with the students? There are various resources that will benefit each goal, so you should take time to think about them. For example, a course that requires high impact can benefit from charts and images, and an emotional course can benefit from audio and video. Various multimedia resources, such as videos, audio and embedded content can enrich the message you want to convey.
Spread the content on the screen
Make sure you spread the information on the screen so it can be read and taken in easily, and vary each screen so students don’t lose interest. For example, avoid too many running screens with questions and interaction, or too many screens followed by flat text. Collate between various resources so your course is engaging.
Tip: It may be useful to organize the information, or Storyboard, with basic drawings of screens on a sheet of paper. This will help you focus on the content without worrying about the tools that you use to make the mock up. It will also give you an idea of the amount of information and how to spread the resources so that they are more engaging for students, for example, learn if you should include an activity every so number of screens.
Where should I place the items on each screen?
Item placement is important. According to reading order, (up-down and left-right), logic is that the most important items on the screen should always appear top-left, as this is the spot where students look first.
Online marketing says this area is the ‘golden triangle’. Research says that humans firstly set sight in this area. Marketing use it for ads or to prompt sales, and you should use it for main items in e-learning.
And, as in all, you can break this rule if you place the rest of the items correctly on the screen. For example, you can place a key item in the middle or right side if the rest of the screen is blank. Take a look at this screen:
The key is to guide the student towards the key items of learning. The next example shows items lined up on the right, they are highlighted in colored cards and images. This will attract students and promote interaction.
As easy as that! If you follow these steps, you are almost done laying out each screen, and will know that each screen has a goal and is congruent with the full course.
isEazy makes it just that! We have over 150 combinations for each slide. Each one divides the screen into various cells, and you can include the item that you want in each: text, image, video, cards, interest items, connecting images, activities, downloads, and more. The combinations are endless!
Remember that you don’t have to fill all the cells. Some can be left blank to provide room; it is a good idea not to overload. Look at this screen: there are four cards on the right and space with an image bottom-left.
Tell us about your experience placing items on screens. How do you apply layout rules to improve learning in your courses?