1. Determine the scope of your training.
identifying groups to be trained. For example, online learners
might include new hires, current staff, customers, sales reps or
candidates for management positions. For each group, establish a
training goal. Now you will have a list of target groups and the
training to be accomplished for each group.
2. Organize your (planned) material into courses.
You may have some paper or electronic material, such as an
Operations Guide or Policy Manual, which you can use as a basis for
building your online learning content. Or, you may have no
existing material at all. Either way, you need to identify what
subjects and topics you will cover for each target group of online
Break the subject matter up (even if you have not created it yet) into
reasonable-sized courses. Keep the amount of material in each
course down to a level where it can be understood and mastered in less
than a day, usually much less. You will probably end up with a
preliminary list of several courses for each target group.
make a preliminary decision as to what electronic formats you will use
to deliver your training. There are many choices available,
including text, HTML, PowerPoint, Flash, Video, Audio and many
others. FlexTraining supports practically any
web-deliverable content, but the choice of format is always up to you.
See the "Creating Learning Content" section of this Course Building
Strategies guide for tips on structuring an effective course.
3. Lay out a course structure for each course.
Give each course a tentative name, and break out the material to be
covered into individual lessons. In many cases, you might still
have no idea what kind of material you will use to build each lesson
(text, images, video, audio, screen shots, etc). We'll address
the content creation issues later - for now you just need to lay out a
structure for each course. See the "Best Practices" section of
this Course Building Strategies guide for tips on structuring an
4. Choose a Testing Strategy and Policies.
FlexTraining offers a great deal of flexibility in how online
knowledge assessments are done. Completing this planning step is a
matter of asking yourself a number of questions and documenting the
- How many tests should there be in each course?
- Should advanced learners be allowed to "test out" of certain
- Will a strict testing policy be used where high passing scores
are established and a limited number of attempts allowed?
- Or will testing simply be an additional learning experience,
with answers and explanations provided after each test?
- What subject matter expert (SME) will you need access to in
order to create your question bank?
There are other policies and options you will set when you actually
build your online tests, but these questions are sufficient to get you
through the planning phase.