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Develop a course

When we contact you to discuss being partners, there will be a number of questions we’ll ask you early on in the process. Look at the questions below in preparation for telling us about the project in more detail.

Which platform will you use for hosting your course?

  • A managed web-based platform such as FutureLearn, Coursera or EdX.
  • A self-managed web-based platform such as CourseSites or Versal
  • A self-hosted platform such as Moodle, Blackboard, Open EdX or OpenMOOC
  • A distributed platform using tools such as Twitter, Tumblr and Hiive
  • Do you already have a presence on a MOOC platform?
  • Do you already have a VLE such as Moodle or Blackboard?

Which learning elements will you use in your course?

  • Video
  • Text articles
  • Web pages
  • Animations
  • Podcasts
  • Interactive content
  • Simulations
  • Gamification

Which assessment elements will you employ in your course?

  • Quizzes
  • Peer assessment
  • Discussion lists
  • Group wiki
  • Individual blogs
  • Social content
  • Interactive content
  • Gamified assessment

Which social elements will you include in your course?

  • Discussion groups
  • Peer-to-peer learning
  • Social media
  • No social element

Over what period will your course be delivered?

  • Two weeks
  • Four weeks
  • Six weeks
  • Not time limited

How many hours will your course demand of a learner?

  • 10 hours
  • 15 hours
  • 20 hours
  • 25 hours

Are there different levels at which a learner could participate in your course?

  • Overview (1-2 hours per week/topic)
  • Intermediate (3-4 hours per week/topic)
  • Advanced (6-8 hours per week/topic)

How will you evaluate the success of your course?

  • To what extent have the learners achieved their learning objectives?
  • To what extent has innovative pedagogy been used successfully?
  • Which lessons about online course development have been learned?
  • Has essential student data (name, email address, country) been captured?

Which of your team members will perform the different project roles?

There are a number of roles to be taken by team members during a course development project, each with its own responsibilities. One person might assume multiple roles but it is important that each role has at least one team member nominated to perform that role. Consider who on your team would take on these roles:

  • Project Manager - responsible for the success of the project by managing the people, time and resources involved in the project and by maintaining regular communication with the sponsor who commissioned the project.
  • Subject Matter Expert - responsible for providing the knowledge and expertise from which the course is constructed by providing material to the Instructional Designer, and for ensuring the accuracy of course material in its final form.
  • Instructional Designer - responsible for shaping course material into a form which is suitable for online delivery, taking material from the Subject Matter Expert and applying e-learning pedagogical principles to produce the elements of an online course.
  • E-learning Developer - responsible for producing course elements such as images, videos, quizzes, animations and interactive content in the format required by the course platform, taking direction from the Instructional Designer and delivering completed elements to the Platform Administrator.
  • Platform Administrator - responsible for adding course elements to the course platform as well as for carrying out administration and maintenance of the platform. This role becomes more extensive when the project makes use of a self-hosted platform.
  • Course Leader - responsible for being the primary human presence while the course is being delivered, taking the pedagogical lead for the duration of the course and giving direction to Teaching Assistants.
  • Teaching Assistant - responsible for supporting the Course Leader during the delivery of the course by undertaking such activities as forum moderation, assessment control and learner support.

What will your course development project look like?

Developing an online training course can be viewed as a project with a number of discrete stages, each of which has its own outputs. A course development project typically consists of the following stages:

  • Project Initiation - the Project Manager and Subject Matter Expert agree the subject matter, scope, project timeframe and budget with the Sponsor; the output is a signed contract.
  • Instructional Design - the Instructional Designer works with the Subject Matter Expert to gather material and structure it for online delivery; the outputs are learning material, assessment material and an Instructional Design document.
  • Course Development - the E-learning Developer works with the Instructional Designer to convert material into a format suitable for online delivery and with the Platform Administrator to position the material on the delivery platform; the output is a course on an online platform ready to be delivered to learners.
  • Learner Recruitment - the Course Leader and Subject Matter Expert promote the course in anticipation of its commencement to targeted learners; the output is a significant number of suitable learners registered on the course on the day it commences.
  • Course Delivery - the Course Leader and Teaching Assistants deliver the course over the planned time period, with technical help provided by the Platform Administrator; the output is an effective learning experience for those participating in the course.
  • Project Evaluation - the Course Leader gathers and analyses the results of in-course assessment and data from the delivery platform; the output is a course evaluation document.