Elearning, meet design

If you’re looking to produce attractive modules to help your learners retain even more knowledge, then buckle in! This blog will teach you all you need to know about basic design tricks to make elearning that works.


Typography basics

Make reading effortless by choosing a Sans-Serif font. My favourite is Verdana because it never fails to look stylish. The extra spacing makes the characters especially easy to read, and even in bold, the words never look squashed. Don’t be tempted to use a Serif font. Serif fonts should be reserved for printed material only. This is because a computer’s screen display has a much lower resolution than printed material, making Serif fonts harder to read.

For on-screen text, I suggest a character size of no less than 16. You could go even bigger, because when it comes to elearning, legibility is king. And remember, always go with dark text on a light background for the best clarity.



Break it down

Humans have a short attention span and tend to lose focus after 7 to 10 minutes. Therefore, each screen you design should focus on only a few key points at a time. Each lesson should be a short, bite-sized chunk of learning.

Also, learners tend to read from the top left corner of the screen, then downwards in an F-shaped pattern. Bearing this in mind, try to place fundamental information on the left side of the screen, and supporting elements to the right.


Take a step back

Knowing your audience plays a vital role in designing a great course. Consider the company’s brand and visual style. A corporate manual might be perfect for managers of a top law firm, but a shop floor factory worker may benefit from something more interactive and visually engaging.


Consistency is everything

Be consistent with the design elements you use. Decide on a colour palette and stick to it. Support the user experience by ‘brain training’ the learner with colour-coded key facts, objectives or quizzes.

When it comes to images, mixing and matching both photos and illustrations in the body of your slides is a design faux pas. Use one or the other and ensure all images are of a suitable quality. Pixelated images will make your elearning look poor and unprofessional. And try not to go overboard with excessively smiley actors found in stock image libraries – nowadays, people can see right through these generic distractions.


Pack a punch

Finally, you need to make a quick impact to capture your audience’s attention. It only takes a few seconds for our minds to decide whether we’re bored or interested, so jazz up your title screen with a stunning image, a legendary video or an epic animation to grab learner attention.


So, there you have it my top design tips to ensure you’re creating truly engaging courses your learners will love. While you’re here, why not check out our list of design mistakes you may be making in your elearning courses (and make sure you rectify them quickly!)