Graphics and Audio are an integral part of e-learning development. More than just being eye-candy, Graphics can enhance learning for learners who prefer to learn visually. Similarly, Audio provides an option of auditory learning if the learner so wishes. Designing online training with rapid authoring tools is simple and straightforward.
In addition they can provide an easy way to integrate audio and graphics into custom e-learning content. Thus learning solutions can be impactful and yet made quickly.
Tips on developing Graphics:
Using a lot of graphics can certainly enhance the learning delivery. At the same time, it is important to find a balance between no graphics and too many graphics. If there are too many visuals on a single page, the learner may find it very distracting and it can be a deterrent to learning.
Standards of placement of images have been followed for a while and are easily recognized by most learners. For instance, the logos on the top-left and interactive elements like ‘next’ or ‘stop’ or ‘pause’ on the bottom-right. It is best to follow these rules for e-learning development as most learners have come to expect it in all learning courses.
Visual appeal of the screen should be enhanced by graphics. Most graphics are compatible with all e-learning software, though the screen size and resolution of the viewing device can be kept in mind when creating graphics for custom e-learning.
Colors set the ‘tone’ of the training as serious, didactic or informal. Once this tone is set, it is necessary to maintain it through the course of the training. Similarly, fonts and sizes should also be kept in mind when developing graphics.
Graphics and text should be together to aid learners. It is proven that text alone is too bland for learners to comprehend and learn from. On their own, graphics cannot be too relevant. It is when they come together that they weave magic!
Tips on creating Audio:
Audio very well with text-heavy courses and can provide the much needed ‘relief’. There are many kinds of audio that are used in e-learning – Narrations, Voice-overs, Sound effects and even Music.
Audio need not always mirror text in e-learning. That is sometimes the best way to strengthen the impact of what was written – but not always.
Audio on its own can be a powerful tool for learning. Many e-learning developers are now increasingly relying on audio to deliver learning than just textual content. In fact, many prefer to develop courses which have power visuals and accompanying audio – and no text at all!
However, not all learners may prefer to learn through just audio or find it distracting. So audio should always be provided as a choice. The learner should be able to turn it off if he or she so wishes.
Audio-transcripts should also be provided to make sure that even if the learner does not or for some reason, cannot hear the audio voiceover, the transcript acts as a backup
Accents are important in an audio voice over and should be able to connect with the learner. Local artists should be used to create authentic audio voiceovers. This also makes certain that the audio is best understood. It is best to keep a balance between male and female speakers to address a learner group that constitutes both the genders.
For impactful e-learning development and delivery, it is necessary that developers keep in mind the needs of the learners. For learners of all profiles, graphics and audio are powerful tools of learning and utilizing them can truly benefit them all.
Gireesh is an e-learning enthusiast and have a special interest in studying the strategies of corporate learning. He is also an avid follower of leading industry blogs related to topics like custom e-learning, mobile earning, game based learning, etc. and like to discuss leading trends of new-age corporate learning.