Authoring tools need no particular introduction. Today almost anyone associated with the learning industry knows about those tools of ease. For those who are new to eLearning, read a bit about authoring tool and some myths around it. We have also listed some of the key features of eLearning tools and compared 3 top authoring tools too.
Over the past few years, many organizations have embraced the power of authoring tools for in-house as well as rapid eLearning development. eLearning authoring tools have eased the process of eLearning creation to a great extent. No doubt that authoring tools like Articulate, Captivate, Lectora are highly evolved and customizable too. But, every coin has its flipside and authoring tool-based eLearning development is no different. Hence, the unsolved question- what came first – the egg or the hen? Oh! That one has been answered though. We are discussing a different one- is authoring tool-based eLearning development a boon or a bane?
To put it in the most diplomatic way- the use of authoring tools for eLearning development can be a boon in cases where the learning needs to be designed quickly. Say for instance, if a compliance course has to be updated based on some new standard that has been added, such additions/changes are usually done promptly. Delay in such cases would mean a lag in keeping the employees up-to-speed and if it directly is a part of the business solution then it would mean a loss in the business too. In such cases authoring tools give a quick turnaround. However, modification in this case can be done only using the tool in which the course is originally designed, and at times haste may lead to hampering of the overall functionalities.
Authoring tool based eLearning development can also be a boon in long-term. Whenever there are major technological updates in the market, most eLearning authoring tools have version releases accordingly to keep up with the pace. This sure came handy for many when the multi device boom took place, and holds promises for the future too.
Many argue that authoring tool-based eLearning lacks interactivity. Well, in terms of the levels of interactivity authoring tools offer only level 1 & 2, the higher levels need more customizations which however a developer with good experience can incorporate which takes it more towards custom development instead. But, on the bright side eLearning authoring tools are a boon for organizations that have SMEs at hand and require just simple courses for their use to be designed.
eLearning authoring tools also come handy in cases where the content security is a matter of highest priority. In-house content creation becomes the best choice in such cases and authoring tools help in simplifying the overall process.
Authoring tools also come with a template library that is updated from time to time. This not only saves time and cost in terms of searching for and purchasing royalty free stock images from different portals. The bane here is that at times it may end up compromising with look and feel just to get it done with-which in turn may have long term repercussions.
In conclusion, there is just one thing we have to say- authoring tools are helpful tools and are here to stay. However, those are yet to evolve and there are times when custom development may be just what you need and so analyze your requirement thoroughly before making the choice.
Below are some of the key benefits of Rapid Authoring Tools
- Easy to learn, no high end expertise required
- Real rapid development
- Inbuild themes are available
- Total cost of ownership is low and hence better ROI
- Time to market is reduced
Some of the highly recommended authoring tools are Articulate Storyline, Captivate, Camptasia, iSpring, Lectora.
Feel free to add your thoughts on this and do Contact us if you need assistance in making the right choice at any point and time.