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5 Key Elements of Well-Designed Online Training

Do the courses in your learning program adhere to these inclusive best practices?

Effective online courses do more than just present information. A good training is an experience that speaks to learners and fosters engagement; an experience that every learner can access, and that feels directly relevant to their day-to-day work. 

So, what should you think about when it comes to selecting quality content? Here are five essential aspects of well-designed courses that enhance learning outcomes and contribute to a culture of inclusivity at your organization:

1. Learners truly feel the course is relevant

Your content should hit home. Learners are much more likely to connect with courses showcasing examples that directly apply to their roles, or that have strong alignment with their career goals. Don’t underestimate how far real-world scenarios can go in building those connections.

2. The content is accessible for all

Accessibility matters—if your learners can’t fully experience the content in a course, how can you expect them to get the full value of the training? Look for courses that are colorblind-friendly and compatible with assistive technologies to ensure every learner has full access to the information being conveyed.

What’s more, everyone should be able to learn in their preferred language. This access increases learning comprehension and retention, which is why courses that offer the same content in multiple languages are more suited to the needs of diverse or globally distributed workforces.

3. The experience feels first class

Today, there’s no shortage of well-produced content. Online courses now have to compete for attention with streaming platforms and YouTube channels that have raised the collective bar on what’s considered high quality. Courses need to be wrapped in top-tier visual design or a cinematic experience if they’re going to stand out and stick in learners’ minds. 

4. The information is the latest and greatest

Nothing demotivates learners like the feeling that the information they’re being given is old, doesn’t teach them anything new, or is just plain inaccurate. The best courses are those that are regularly refreshed to incorporate the latest information and advances in learning technologies, so your learners never settle for stale content.

5. Learners can track their progress

A sense of accomplishment drives engagement. This is true at all levels, whether it’s progress indicators signaling how far a learner has made it through the training, a knowledge check that lets them demonstrate their new understanding, or courses that build on one another in a learning path. Giving individuals a sense of how far they’ve come is critical to maintaining motivation for continued skill building. 

Design your own inclusive training with Simon

When it comes to finding quality courses, we’re proud of the caliber we’ve established in the OpenSesame marketplace. The depth and breadth of our course library covers many, many bases for organizations of all kinds—both in terms of the training formats and topics their learners need. But there will always be subjects so niche to an organization that the best fit for them doesn’t exist yet. In these instances, learners shouldn’t have to settle for less, and L&D professionals shouldn’t have to become expert course designers, either. 

Enter Simon, our game-changing content creation platform. Simon caters to elearning publishers, L&D teams, and any subject matter experts seeking a user-friendly way to create visually appealing, responsive, accessible, and fully translated courses. 

Simon’s intuitive interface ensures a seamless experience for both course creators and learners. Quickly craft courses with text, images, audio, video, and even quizzes; the resulting course’s cinematic design mirrors popular streaming platforms, offering a familiar and engaging experience that sets the tone for impactful learning.

Next, say goodbye to the complexities of managing multiple translated versions. With its built-in translation capabilities, Simon ensures that all employees, regardless of their native language, can benefit from the same high-quality training content. In a matter of minutes, Simon will effortlessly translate courses into multiple languages—including text and narration—bridging language barriers and fostering a sense of belonging. And, of course, Simon is designed in accordance with WCAG and 508 accessibility standards, so your courses adhere to best practices for online content. 

Need to make an update? With Simon, modifying course content across languages is no longer a chore. Update course content once, and Simon automatically syncs changes across all language versions, ensuring everyone is always on the same page.

See Simon in action

Want to learn more about Simon? Recently, OpenSesame’s Chief Product Officer, Josh Blank, and several members of the Simon team were joined by Cody Winn, Director of Platform Experience for TED@Work. On their joint webinar, the group looked at how to create engaging courses effortlessly with Simon, and how TED has used the tool to really scale their learning program. 

It was a great discussion, and one not to be missed by anyone who’s invested in creating a culture of inclusive, impactful learning at their organization.