E-learning courses: attractive or effective?

June 14, 2021 Izabella Juchowska

From this article you will learn:

  • what we mean by attractive e-learning courses
  • how the attractiveness of Flash e-learning courses is achieved
  • what is worth focusing on when choosing e-learning courses for employees
  • how to combine attractiveness with effectiveness

E-learning courses are often described as attractive. What is hidden behind this notion? When you buy online courses for your employees, do you choose them because of their graphic attractiveness? Or are you thinking about their effectiveness? We often buy with our eyes, influenced by emotions, tempted by appearance and without looking “inside”. Let us consider whether we should pay so much attention to visual attractiveness when deciding to purchase e-learning courses. What kind of courses should you choose to avoid buyer’s remorse?

Attractiveness, which means...

Exactly… what comes to mind when you think about attractive e-learning courses? Is it sophisticated? Does it offer interesting graphics? Perhaps it relates to the complexity of interaction? Maybe it’s not about form at all, but about content that is tailored to participant expectations, which has a clear goal and is useful in everyday work?

How were these courses structured in the past?

In the past, making e-learning courses attractive was easy to achieve. Developing e-learning was a novelty, so it provoked curiosity and intrigued participants. Additionally, extended storylines and moving characters (hello, Flash!) intensified the attraction. A tribal chief talking about banking issues, leading hero-participants through successive expeditions in search of hidden treasure? It was possible… and extremely interesting. It is still possible, but enthusiasm for such ideas has waned sharply. We no longer think of such characters in attractive terms. On the contrary, it seems infantile.

Let us focus on effectiveness

Today, we will shift our focus from attractive storylines to rooting the built world in user experience. A course is not supposed to be a sophisticated story about lost butterflies, but an invitation to change one’s behavior in an effective way. How then do you create appeal by focusing primarily on course usability and efficiency in terms of user needs?
Here are some tips:

  • Various means of knowledge transfer, i.e. using elements such as, e.g. animations, knowledge pills, podcasts and webinars. This ties in well with microlearning.
  • Questions that will represent a certain challenge for the participant (not in terms of difficulty, but those that require some engagement to answer).
  • Case studies, i.e. using real descriptions of problems or creating a story that is plausible, are very interesting elements that can break the monotony. According to Action Mapping, questions about knowledge are less important than those that foster a situation in which changing a given behavior is possible. Based on this model, questions with extended feedback, e.g. recounting the continuation of the story, are very effective.
  • Interesting facts provide a temporary respite from absorbing content, and if well-chosen, expand knowledge.
  • Storytelling, i.e. the icing on the cake. A colorful, light story, which also evokes emotions, always makes courses more interesting.

With MyNetwork, you can create attractive and effective e-learning courses.

We combine attractiveness and effectiveness

Attractiveness and effectiveness are not mutually exclusive terms. But only making effectiveness the priority lends a course the appropriate proportions. Any attractive graphics or interactions should support the teaching process, which renders courses effective. We must not forget that e-learning courses are first and foremost about educating adults. That is why it is so important, when designing them, to pay attention to the teaching methodology and combine visually attractive graphics and engaging interactions with effective knowledge transfer. This approach ensures the creation of e-learning courses that are both useful and visually appealing.

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