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Content is always king. But, the importance of visuals cannot be undermined. It is imperative to design eLearning with memorable imagery that holds the learner’s attention. Thoughtful and consistent placement of text, graphics, empty space, and color contributes to the overall learning experience. Add immense value by applying these 5 design tips to eLearning. And, carry them through to supplemental training materials, such as PowerPoint presentations or PDF handouts.
No one likes reading long-winding paragraphs filled with jargon. Strive to convey the content as simply as possible. If a narrated course displays text on screen, it should not list a transcript of audio narration. Instead, write bullet points or short sentences to summarize the main points of the slide or page. And, use fonts that are easy to read, such as Arial and Verdana.
Images speak a thousand words, which is why every image in an eLearning course should be relevant and compelling. When using stock photographs, search to find images that truly support or illustrate the topic, rather than inserting cheesy photos just to fill the screen.
Work with a graphic artist or professional photographer to create custom artwork whenever possible. There are an infinite number of design styles from which to choose. Consider the subject matter as well as the target audience to determine the most appropriate style for the project. Trending options include flat icons, hand-drawn sketches, skeuomorphic drawings that look realistic, and flat lay photography.
Whatever image style you choose, use it consistently throughout your eLearning training. Also use harmonious fonts, consistent navigation, and uniform functionality. This helps learners feel comfortable in the learning experience. If there is something out of place or pattern, they will notice and start focusing on design inconsistencies, rather than the learning content. Ensure all elements of the course form a cohesive package.
Whitespace, or empty areas on the screen, is perfectly acceptable for elearning design. There is no need to flood the screen with text and images. Only show important text and relevant images. Overwhelming amounts of fluff and clutter take more time to design and ultimately detract from the learning experience.
Define a color palette for the eLearning course. This contributes to a consistent design. In addition, colors have their own influence, which sets the tone of the training. For example, blue and green are soothing to the eye, orange boosts creativity, red triggers a sense of urgency, and so on. Background colors should be soft and subdued and the text can be dark. Consider using contrasting colors to draw the learner’s attention to key topics.
Designing Digitally, Inc., develops custom elearning training solutions of all scales, from efficient eLearning courses to multiplayer serious games. Contact us to get started on your professionally-designed course!