If you’ve got knowledge or passion for something that you need to share with everyone else, you may be seeking to create an online course to get that information out there. But, before you start teaching others, you need to educate yourself on the biggest and most common mistakes you’ll need to avoid when creating an online course that could cost you time, money, energy and, most importantly, the success of your course.
8 Common Mistakes to Avoid when Creating an Online Course
1. Not paying attention to the length
You want to jam-pack as much information into your course as possible. So your students are getting the most information they can get. But, you’ve always got to keep time in mind for your materials, such as video tutorials, and your course overall.
While it’s easier to access online courses through our almost constant online connection, it seems that everyone is much busier nowadays.
Limiting the time your course will consume daily and keeping a leash on how long it will take will help increase its likelihood to success. Keep your written content to an easily manageable length, and ignite the interest in reading that written content. Some help the Blog Topic Generator give you intriguing things to talk about.
It can be difficult to have anyone commit to anything long-term these days – even a short-term commitment can be challenging. With short video tutorials that learners can quickly view during breaks at work, a condensed course is easy to consume and digest.
2. Not laying a solid foundation
Chances are, you’re enthusiastic about the subject of your online course, and you want to jump right into creating the materials you’ll want to use throughout the course. Although this may seem like a highly productive route to take, you may be backing yourself into a corner that you’ll later need to work yourself out of.
Before you get into the course materials’ details, start with the foundation of the course itself. Figure out the ‘why’ behind the course – why are you doing this in the first place? This is essentially your mission statement and vision for the course.
And, maybe even more important is answering the question of whether or not people even want this course. Sure, you may be interested in the topic, but does anyone else have the desire to learn about it?
Once you’ve got that determined, you can start moving on to the other details of the course.
3. Bigger isn’t always better
Sure, you want to give your students all of the information you can, give them the most for their money and make them feel like your course had plenty of substance and value. But, remember that bigger isn’t always better, which is especially true in online courses.
Online learners have shown us that they often prefer shorter videos and shorter courses overall. It’s hard to commit to something for any time. People lose interest and drop off. But, a longer course also typically means a bigger financial commitment. It’s easier to ask students to pledge a smaller financial commitment several times than to ask for one large one.
Having to put up a large amount of money all at once could deter some from taking the plunge and registering. Whereas if your one large course was broken up into smaller components, each with a fractional cost of the sum of all the parts, it’s easier for someone to pledge that amount and be able to afford it.
4. Not proofreading for embarrassing errors
You are asking potential students to entrust you with their education. So, how totally and completely embarrassing would it be to have spelling or grammar errors in your online content. Even a single error could put into question your credibility – not only did you make a mistake, but you didn’t take the time to proofread for it. The biggest error you can make to destroy your credibility is to plagiarize materials, so use special tools to ensure you’re not doing this.
Keeping your content professional looking and sounding is also vital, so leave the overused bold letters, capitalization and out-of-control exclamations for your personal social media postings.
5. Putting the platform before the content
When you start creating your course, beginning from the platform you’ll use is a little bit of a backward process. Do this, and you’ll be trying to fit your course into the platform you’ve selected, rather than the other way around.
A better strategy is to create the structure for your online course, then the materials, and lastly, determine what webinar software platform would be best to accommodate what you’ve got.
Through any social media platforms you choose to use, Buffer can help you manage them, so you’re able to respond quickly and efficiently to any questions.
6. Making things too easy
You want to ensure your students are encouraged by their success in your course. But you also want them to know that they’re getting a valuable education and their money was well spent. Challenge them in their learning so they feel a sense of fulfillment and accomplishment. If they’re not feeling challenged, they could lose interest altogether, which could cause them to drop this course and not enroll in any future ones with you.
7. Sticking to just one type of resource
Everyone has a different way of learning and understanding information. Because of this, it’s important to offer different resources and materials when presenting information. Teachers can use videos, images and other multimedia resources to give different perspectives on the same topic.
8. Taking the negative negatively
No one wants to know that they’ve done something wrong, upset someone or could do a better job. But it’s vital that you get this negative feedback to change and improve your online course.
Avoiding negative feedback could spell the end of your course if you’re unwilling to even listen to suggestions for making it better. Conversely, taking that negative feedback and showing that you’re interested in your students and their learning by making the necessary changes could boost your credibility and the trust they have in you, that you’ve got their best intentions in mind.
Offering up a variety of media resources helps create an interesting and engaging online course for your students.
Gloria Kopp is a career adviser and a resume writer at Academized and Essayroo. She writes career columns at Engadget and Eliteassignmenthelp. Gloria is the author of the Studydemic educational blog, where she writes guides and reviews for international students.