7 Steps eLearning Course Developers Must Not Ignore During QA Testing

8 Steps eLearning Course Developers Must Not Ignore During QA Testing
Summary: The vast majority of eLearning courses go through QA testing to discover various mistakes, including typos, bugs, and glitches that may cause issues for learners. It may not be an easy process, but omitting certain steps has a direct impact on the overall learning experience.

Why Is QA Testing Important?

Quality assurance (QA) testing is the final step before releasing an eLearning course, and it aims to gauge whether the material meets the quality standards set. The design, functionality, and assessments of the course are thoroughly examined to find errors and bugs that may cause low completion rates and ineffective learning experiences. In some industries, like medicine, health and safety guidelines must also be checked to ensure they abide by local laws and regulations. So, let's take a closer look at what the QA process involves and why each step is essential.

Steps Developers Must Not Omit During QA Testing

1. Make The Content Accurate And Check For Typos

A QA tester's first step is to check all the provided information and guarantee it is factual and up to date, as learners must be able to trust the material without needing to verify every detail on their own. At the same time, the tester should check whether the material is organized logically. For example, the introduction of each sequence must be at the beginning, not the end. Instructions must also be given to participants. They can be included in a separate document or added at the beginning of each sequence so learners know how to take quizzes, fill out information, and interact with multimedia elements. Additionally, the grammar and typography should be checked thoroughly. Titles must be relevant to each sequence, and punctuation and spelling mistakes should be avoided.

2. Ensure Interactive Elements Are Functioning

Interactive elements may include quizzes, forms, scenarios, and gamification. Depending on a course and its objectives, designers must choose the ones that elevate the learning experience. During QA testing, developers must check if all interactive functions, including buttons, work. For example, a course may include yes/no quizzes where none of the answers can be clicked, and as a result, participants can't proceed to the next steps. The same issue can appear with the "Submit" button, which prevents learners from proceeding with their answers and final assessments. Additionally, a "Pause" button and score indication should be added to notify learners about their performance.

3. Keep An Issue Log

During QA testing, a variety of issues may appear. That's why you may need to keep an issue log where every bug, glitch, and dysfunctional element is documented. Developers can add notes on the actions they performed to resolve issues for future reference. The log can include closed, open, and ongoing incidents. In cases where many professionals do quality assurance testing on the same course, their communication should be seamless, and that's where frequent log updates come into play. Such a log must be kept after a course is published, as well, to allow learners to report any minor or major issue they face.

4. Check Quizzes

Each answer's result must be tested for its outcomes. For example, some quizzes don't let you move on to the next question if you give the wrong answer. In other quizzes, the right answer is highlighted, and an explanation is given on why your answer is wrong. Not all tests reveal whether answers are correct during the course, but make this revelation at the end. Additionally, designers must decide whether they want to allow learners to go back and make corrections to their answers. Lastly, during QA testing, professionals should decide how many times a participant can retake a test in search of a better score.

5. Think Like A Learner

If you are doing QA testing, try to step into participants' shoes and complete the course like a regular learner would. Make sure that instructions are clear and include both audio and written forms. But remember that not all people complete courses at the same pace. Some may be fast and not wait for the audio to finish first. In this case, there should be no overlap. You may also want to try and do what people aren't supposed to do. For instance, instructions may state that participants must select one option from a slide. You can try selecting multiple and see what happens. Not everyone pays close attention to instructions, and holes in development may suddenly appear.

6. Fortify Usability And Accessibility

This step is crucial so that learners can easily navigate a course where sequences are organized logically and detailed instructions are offered. That's why it's critical to check hyperlinks. However, developers must keep in mind that not all people can access content effortlessly. Review the Web Content Accessibility Guidelines (WCAG) and curate different accessibility features. For example, QA testers should check whether a course is compatible with screen readers and other assistive technologies. In the case of audio files, they must provide captions, transcripts, and descriptions for those with hearing impairments.

7. Use A Fresh Set Of Eyes

After working on a course, your eyes may become so familiar with it that you miss simple glitches and insufficient instructions. A simple trick is to take a moment away from the project and focus on something else, then come back to it when you're recharged. You can also ask for someone else's opinion. It should be someone who has never read the material and can offer valuable insights, a well as a different perspective.


QA testing is a demanding yet necessary procedure in any eLearning course's journey before release. A detailed checklist may be needed to note all the actions that must be taken to ensure smooth operation and issue resolution. Organizations should also set an acceptable quality level (AQL), which, based on the number of bugs found, deems a situation critical, high, medium, or low. These actions should be strictly followed for any course to be successful and address learners' needs.