For online education materials, it is important to take into consideration the navigation system of the course. Obviously, learners cannot physically turn to the next page to move forward in the lesson. You also cannot put everything on one page. This is why you need to take the time to design the navigation of the course that you will create.
One of the goals of a good elearning course is to provide the learners with a great learning experience. The navigation of the course is one way to boost this experience. Otherwise, the sequence of the lesson might be lost. In a worse case scenario, they might not be able to complete the course because they do not know how to proceed.
To ensure that the learning experience is heightened during the online education process, here are the basic navigation rules that you should follow.
- Keep your next button simple, yet recognizable. There should only be one button to help learners move forward in the course. It should be simple so it will not be a distraction to the learners. At the same time, it should be confused with the other buttons or navigation icons on the page. Apart from the word “next” you can also use “continue” – as long as you only use one.
- Opt to give a navigation tutorial. In case the online education process is long, you may want to provide the learners with a tutorial. It can be a demo video or a simple list of the navigation icons that they can use. As long as they understand how each button is to be used, that is okay. In case you will allow them to go back and forth in the lesson, this is the perfect place to mention that.
- Tell them what to expect – but be mysterious about it. To heighten the next part of the lesson, you can choose to give a phrase or keyword so the learners will know what to expect next. This can be in the form of a call-to-action (click here if you want to know more) or a teaser (get to know the new rules of the industry).
- Keep icon descriptions short. This is important because you do not want your icons to take up too much space. Of course, you want them to be recognizable too. You do not want the learners to click on something that will not take them where they want to go.
- Choose the design of your icons carefully. It has to be aligned to the tone of the online education material. If it is a formal course, then make it formal. Try to put it in the same color tones as your course. You may want to use something that your learners can can understand or relate to – especially if you are dealing with localized content.
- Make sure the icons are all working. Try the icons before you launch the online education. You do not want to create an icon that cannot be used by the learners. This might frustrate them and lose interest in the lesson.
Your online education materials will really benefit from a great navigational system. It will help your learners get the most out of the learning experience.
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