Mobile learning, or m-learning, has found strong footing in recent years – especially in corporate circles where learning-on-the-go is an essential need. But the popularity of m-learning has created a growing need for mobile-compatible content – content that is readily available and accessible to the learner. In this scenario, the turnaround time for developing m-learning content is a growing concern. At G-Cube, we have developed more than 200 learning hours of mobile-compatible content. Often working with challenging timelines and large content volume, we have found that creating courses with rapid authoring tools is the way to go.
Rapid authoring tools have been used to develop e-learning content for many years now. Over the last few years, tools like Articulate Storyline and Lectora have evolved to suit the needs of the mobile platform and can develop content which is ready to be rendered on the mobile platform as well. For a developer, there are many advantages of creating mobile-compatible courses with these tools and there is a wide variety in terms of what you can do.
- The biggest advantage is the saving you make – in time, effort and money. The same course can be developed and rendered across a variety of delivery platforms – PCs, mobiles and tablets. For the end user, m-learning provides multiple opportunities to access the content as per his or her schedule – anytime, anywhere.
- No special or separate effort is needed to make the course mobile-compatible. The course fits automatically as per the screen of the mobile device. Shell features of the course – like Navigation Buttons, Seekbar, Menu, and Volume On/Off – are also supported with no additional changes.
- The courses can be made available on the Web and can be accessed through almost any popular mobile browser. Since most mobile browsers now support HTML5, the content created can be accessed by all learners – irrespective of the model and make of their mobiles. This increases the reach of the content exponentially.
- Courses that are available online can also be downloaded and read offline. Due to the lightweight structure of the courses, they take up very little space on the learners’ device. Thus the learner can access the course content even when internet connectivity is limited or unavailable.
- The courses can also be hosted on an LMS, to ensure security of the content. The learner can access the content via the Web and his or her progress through the course can also be tracked.
- Courses created with rapid authoring tools conform to SCORM- and AICC, ensuring that tracking is made possible through any new-age LMS. Irrespective of how a course is accessed – online (if the course is on a web server), offline or while hosted on the LMS – the tracking mechanism is the same and is synched accordingly, even when the learner is using multiple devices to access the content at different times.
- A variety of interactivities can be built in the courses to increase their appeal to the learner, including slide transitions, illustrations, scrolling panels and so on. These features are the chosen interactivities in most e-courses and render in the same manner on the mobile platform as well – ensuring a uniform learner experience irrespective of the type of the delivery device. Other interactivities – like Drag and Drop, Text/Data entry fields, and Surveys – can also be built, which provides the opportunity to create a variety of tests and assessments for the learner that can be taken on the go.
- Rapid authoring tools also ensure that the audio element is synchronized and renders well on the mobile platform. This provides the opportunity to create mobile content which has a strong audio element and creates a powerful connect with the mobile audience. For instance, when reading text on a small screen is a problem, the learner can choose to just ‘hear’ the course and gain instant knowledge.
The realm of mobile content is growing with its increasing popularity. We at G-Cube are excited about the challenges it’s throwing up, and we find sharing our experiences a pleasure. To know more about our mobile learning experiences, write to us at [email protected]