What is the easiest way to create SCORM e-learning content?
SCORM 1.2 is still the defacto standard for moving learner progress information backwards and forwards between e-learning content and the learning management system that hosts it.
Anyone who wants to create interactive e-learning content needs to think about SCORM and you will almost certainly need to implement SCORM if you want to track learner progress in the learning management system.
What’s the easiest way to build e-learning content that uses SCORM? Let’s assume you know your subject matter, you’re familiar with the kinds of interactions that are common in e-learning content (multi-choice, video, fill in the blanks etc.) and you’ve already got some ideas about how the content could be organised into a series of e-learning modules.
Option 1 is to use an authoring tool and build the content in house. Try out 2 or 3 on free trials and then pick the one that you like the most. There’s plenty of choice now and 3 of the most popular tools are:
- Adobe Captivate - well established with rich features including storyboarding and saving ideas as draft.
- The Adapt authoring tool - a free open source tool. Very easy to use.
- Articulate Storyline 360 - another well known commercial tool that comes with a big library of images and graphics.
Option 2 is to outsource the work to an experienced e-learning content developer, one that understands learning content design and knows the SCORM specification. It sounds like the more expensive option but it may not be if you’re looking to digitise large amounts of learning or if you want to create more sophisticated content that’s outside the capabilities of an off-the-shelf authoring tool. And there will be economies of scale if you’re producing high volumes - the experienced developer will use a lot of reusable templates and code. They will also be familiar with more than one learning management system.
Testing is something else that needs to be considered. SCORM has been around a long time but our experience is that testing the content is still a relatively large part of the overall job - even when the content has been authored with an established authoring tool. You need to double check that interactions work as expected and the right data is saved back into the learning management system. And of course, the testing job is bigger if you’re targeting more than one LMS.