As an e-Learning software user, chances are you’ve put your courses and training through a rigorous review and testing process. In her session, But Does it Work?, at the Lectora® User Conference, Laura Gillenwater shared best practices and tips to evaluate courses to ensure that they are effective before implementation.
Phase 1: Developer Testing
The Developer Testing phase is your chance to identify any errors or snags in your course. Laura suggests using these tools in Lectora to test your content for a variety of errors:
- Debug Mode – Discover what’s happening behind the scenes as your course is running. Debug Mode shows you what Lectora is doing and thinking.
- Error Check Tool – Double click on any errors that arise after you use the Error Check Tool and Lectora will take you directly to that error so you know exactly what needs to be fixed.
- HTML Testing – What your course looks like in Preview mode can be very different than what you see in Publish mode. Toggle back and forth to make sure that your course is set up exactly the way you want it.
- Learning Management System Testing – Check to ensure that your course works with your LMS.
Phase 2: User Testing
The User Testing phase gives users an opportunity to provide feedback regarding course structure, content and flow. Sit in during this testing phase to observe users interacting with the courses, and take notes about any potential flags that arise. Ask users to fill out feedback forms and explain how to use them. Here are some User Testing methods from Laura:
- Quality Assurance Editors – In this stage, QA editors ensure the quality of the course’s instructional design, writing, consistency and conformance to company standards. This stage provides a development opportunity, based on the feedback received.
- ReviewLink™ – Laura suggests inviting 6 testers, including real learners unfamiliar with the course, trainers and subject matter experts.
- Run 2 Sessions of User Testing – The first session should include trainers and subject matter experts. The second session should consist of real learners and your manager.
Christie Wroten graduated from Indiana Wesleyan University with a bachelor's degree in English and Writing. When she's not writing about e-Learning, Christie enjoys traveling or playing piano and guitar.