How to Write Compelling eLearning Content

  • Posted on August 16, 2016   Shazia Wajid

    Teachers require great communication skills (listening, speaking, writing, and reading) to transmit knowledge effectively and motivate students to learn. Online teachers are no different. Though online teachers do not need expertise in all four communication areas, strong writing skills enables them to share their knowledge successfully.

    eLearning courses require a great deal of writing for on-screen text, audio scripts, learning objectives, assessments, interactivity, feedback, case studies, stories, etc. An author may be doing creative and persuasive writing in one course, and technical writing in another. Whatever your course topic, eLearning authors need to create interesting, inspiring content that delivers concepts clearly to the audience.

    Here are a few quick tips for writing compelling eLearning content for your online courses:

    • Avoid passive voice when writing. Whenever possible, use the active voice; it is simpler and more concise. The subject is performing the action instead of receiving the action.
    • Keep sentences short and to the point, but don’t leave out essential information in an effort to keep things precise.
    • Write cohesively by connecting ideas from one slide to the next.
    • Avoid industry jargon. Not every student is aware of the common industry terms, and unknown words and phrases might take their concentration away from the main topic.
    • Use good old storytelling techniques (scenarios, real-life experience, case studies) to combine experience, ideas, and facts into meaningful knowledge.
    • Use interesting headings, subheadings, and teasers to trigger curiosity.
    • Engage in a conversational tone. Ask them questions.  Address them directly. Discuss their issues and hurdles and how to overcome them. Direct conversations yield better results rather than formal tones. Make everything about the learners.
    • Use interactivity to convey content in a refreshing manner.
    • Share real-life scenarios and experiences to help learners relate to the content. Use a real-life hero overcoming obstacles to become a winner in the end.
    • Proof read your work for typos and grammatical errors. Save your draft in a word document before adding it in the authoring tool.
    • Use feedback as an opportunity to fill in learning gaps.

    Practice, practice, and practice

    How do you become a good writer? The simplest approach is reading a lot. Look for things that interest you. Focus on the choice of words. What made you read through to the end? When writing for eLearning courses, keep in mind the tips discussed in this blog. One trick to write better content is reading what you have written.  While you are reading, ask yourself: Is the content organized and interesting? Does it have a flow? It is relevant and understandable? Is it something that would keep the learner engaged? Rectify any errors and gaps that you spot, and you will end up with a more polished draft.

    Have you written anything yet? Now that you know how to write interesting content, it is time to convert your ideas into compelling online courses. Good luck!

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