Back to Basics: How to produce your first course in Elucidat

From planning to releasing, this guide is designed to ensure your first Elucidat project is off to a flying start. It’s packed full of exclusive tips, tricks and resources from our learning experts – as well as the wider industry.

So let’s get going!

 

Planning

Planning is inarguably the most important part of the process, but it also depends how you plan and the types of elearning you’re producing. It’s worth noting that Elucidat supports planning, right within the platform. Read how here

But if you’re starting from scratch and looking to produce high-quality elearning straight away, why not take a look at our 5C’s framework to be your help? Or one of the other great frameworks we explore in this guide to elearning best practice. You could also take a look at some inspiring examples of elearning in our roundup of the most innovative here

If you’re importing or adapting existing learning, we’d recommend The Digital Learning Skill-Up. It’s a free course that helps you convert content from F2F to online in 30 days, but has a tonne of lessons and recommendations that help with any content import. Or read our Ultimate Guide to transforming face-to-face into online blended experiences here.

Whichever planning method you decide to follow, this step shouldn’t be skipped over lightly. Without clarity on your goals, audience and project structure, your build will take a lot longer that it needs to. If you’d like some extra help, talk to the Elucidat team to discover how we support you on every step of your production journey. 

 

Get Started

Now that you have your planning done, it’s time to get practical! Log into your Elucidat account and familiarise yourself with the Start Screen. This is where you’ll come each and every time you log in to Elucidat. It contains the three simple steps you’ll need to get your project underway. 

 

Step 1 – Choosing how to start

After logging in, you’ll find two or three options of how to kick-off your next project. There’s creating a new project, creating from another project, or creating with Learning Accelerator. But what’s the difference?

  • Starting a new project means starting totally from scratch. We recommend this for more advanced authors, or for teams who want to have complete control of a project from start to finish. Use it when you want to build out all elements, or just experiment!
  • Creating from another project means using a project in your account as a starting point. If you’ve created something that works, or want to create a new version of an existing course, this is the option for you.

For these two options, watching our instructional Beginner course on YouTube is a great place to see a step-by-step. 

  • Or use Learning Accelerator, which gives you access to a range of our supercharged Blueprints. They’re pre-built course structures based on tried and tested elearning models, complete with in-line guidance on how to use them. And the best bit? Specific blueprints will be recommended for you based on your project requirements. Anyone can create quality elearning with Learning Accelerator. Read more about Learning Accelerator here.

 

Recommended Blueprint

 

Step 2 – Decide on a Brand Style

 

Why should I brand my project?

How your project looks is important. It helps learners identify your organization, plus makes learning feel consistent and professional. 

Great branding helps to build loyalty and trust with your learners. Just think about brands such as Heineken and Coca-Cola, and you will undoubtedly create an instant connection to their logo and colour palette.

Your elearning experiences should leverage the strength of your brand to make a real impact on your learners.

But building a ‘look and feel’ each time can be time-consuming and result in inconsistencies between projects. That’s where a Brand Style comes in. Each account comes with our 6 Elucidat Styles, but also the option to create your own. You may already have one set up that your organization uses, but if not – creating one is easy.

How do I create a Brand Style?

There’s two routes you can take with creating a Brand Style for your organization. Use a URL or build it yourself. 

Building from a URL will search out the brand colors, logo and styles applied to your specified website. Each element is further customizable, so you can fine tune the style to exactly meet your needs. 

Alternatively, you can choose to build a Brand Style manually. Upload logos and specify colours right from the start, so that you have complete control. 

Once you’ve built out exactly what you would like, you can save that style to be accessible by you and everyone within your account – to be used time and again on all your projects. 

How do I apply an existing Brand Style?

Applying a predefined style is easy! On the start page, simply select the style you want and proceed to the next step.

 

Step 3 – Name your Project 

Although naming your project is simple – just type and go – there could be more to this step than meets the eye. While we all know how to type in a project name, the name you use can have an impact on your business. 

This is where a naming convention comes in handy, particularly with big enterprise. 

Having standardised ways of naming your courses saves time and effort further down the line, so it’s worth taking a moment to think on what yours might be. 

Reading this article about naming conventions may help, but here’s a few reasons why it is so important to consider:

  • Smoother administration – By including information in the name of the project, it makes it easier for anyone to see what it is and how or where it should sit.
  • Improved version control – Including version information makes sure your colleagues know which is the latest project to use, and which course learners may or may not have seen.
  • Time and effort saving – With clear and consistent naming, you will reduce the amount of duplication and reduce the amount of time spent searching for projects.
  • Reduce error and risk – De-risk your learning production by ensuring that only the most recent images are shared, sensitive data is protected and restrict access where necessary.

Whether you decide on your naming convention immediately or not, ensure that any ‘test’ courses you create are labelled as such. That way they’ll be easy to identify and remove as required. 

So, once you’ve decided on your name, enter it and hit the button beneath. 

 

The Project Pages Area

Elucidat is designed so that you can storyboard right within the platform. In this page, you can get an overview of the structure and layout of your project, without needing to dive in to edit individual pages – until you’re ready.

If you’ve used a Learning Accelerator Blueprint, or another project as the basis for this one, you’ll have a pre-built structure of pages and chapters for your project already in this screen. 

If you’ve started from scratch, or want to make edits to the structure of your project, it’s super simple to do. Either click ‘Add new Page’ within a chapter to add a new page to that chapter, or within a new chapter to start another.

All the pages are able to be dragged-and-dropped into place as many times as needed. Anywhere you see the three dots, you can access options to Edit, Delete, Duplicate or Move pages or chapters. 

When you’re ready to edit, just double click any page you want to access. If there’s not already a page type set for that page, you’ll be asked to pick one. 

Read even more about planning and storyboarding within Elucidat in this blog, which works through the 5Cs and applying them to your project too. Or watch this webinar, showing off the full capabilities of the Pages area. 

 

Editing and Layout

When it comes to editing, with Elucidat you can change almost anything. 

From content to layout, it’s all up to you. To access the different views, you’ll find four options just above your content.

Getting the layout right

In Layout view, you can add or edit elements according to your project’s needs. Whether it’s an interaction, more text or media, just hit the ‘plus’ symbols to discover all your options and to build your perfect page. 

Content next!

In the Editing view (don’t forget to toggle between), you can add images, media and text to your newly-perfected layout. Anywhere you see the pencil icon is how to edit that particular element.

Top tip: Double click on any area you want to edit, and it’ll bring up the same options as the pencil icon!

Check out your work

Using the final views, ‘Preview’ and ‘Device view’, you can take a look at how your course would look once it’s live. Whether it’s on desktop, mobile or tablet, you can see what your learners would see where they would see it. 

Collaborate with Your Team

Elucidat is built for collaboration. Whether your team is central, decentralized, remote or contract-based – the platform is built so you can work together. 

Read about all the ways you can work together in the app in the Collaboration section of our help center. 

 

Getting Feedback

You can leave feedback in-line for colleagues anywhere within your project, so they can see exactly what you’re referring to – just right-click in the place where you want to make your comment. You can see any outstanding comments in the Review tab.

It’s important, though, that you’ve invited your colleagues into your Elucidat account for them to see that feedback!

Admins can invite colleagues in the Team area – found in the top navigation. 

 

And Release!

With multiple release modes, your new course can be made accessible to just about anyone – whichever method they use to access learning. 

Elucidat supports multiple releases per project and multiple types of release, too. 

  • Online link – this is probably the easiest way to release your project. With this type of release, you can simply send a URL link to your learners and they can access your project. It works well for open learning, as anyone who has the link will be able to access the course.
  • SCORM  – the most-widely used release mode for LMS-hosted projects. You get a zipped project and an LMS manifest, ready for upload. 
  • Plus API and Backup SCORM are available if required.

Know which type of release you need? Brilliant job! You’re done. Hit the button and release!

If you do need more information about the release types available and their benefits, read this article about SCORM vs. xAPI

Want to learn more about SCORM in particular? This article going back to basics is for you. 

Or read all about the different release modes in our help centre.

 

What’s next?

Whether you’re a customer or not, why not try out the above steps in your account?

Contact us to sign up for a trial here, or log into your account here.

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