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Why is it important to create a course outline or storyboard before building an eLearning course?

A course outline or storyboard will help you to organize both the course content and your thoughts on interactivity (audio, video, graphics, interactions, etc.).

Here are a few things to consider when building your storyboard:

On-Screen text

  • What information is best presented as on-screen text?
  • How much is too much? Remember, learners typically only scan the on-screen text.

Audio Scripting

  • Will or should you use audio in your course? If you decide to use it, be consistent throughout the course.
  • If using audio, will you also include written scripting for the leaner to read?
  • Can the learner advance through the course even if the audio is still playing?
  • Do the learners have audio capabilities? Will they use headsets/earbuds? Do they have speakers for their computers?


  • Will you add interactions/quizzes to your course?
  • Interactions/quizzes should support the learning process and not distract from it. Use interactions to reinforce learning content.


  • Do not use gratuitous images. The images in your course must support the story you are telling.
  • Most learners only scan over the text so your graphics need to help tell the story.
  • Can the text be combined into the image?


  • Is video a good delivery method for the content being presented?
  • What information is best presented in video format?
  • Do you have the time and budget for video?
  • Can your network handle video?

Course Test

  • Is a course test required? If so, plan for the test in the storyboard process. This allows you to build test questions when you build the course objectives. The course test should not be an afterthought once the course is created.

Printable Reference Materials

  • Does the learner need printable reference materials to refer to while completing the training or after the training? Maybe offer a training recap.

Website Links

  • Can you link the learner off to a website to learn more about the topic?

Development Notes

  • Include additional development/design notes.


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