How To Create Effective eLearning Presentations and Slideshows
Each eLearning deliverable, regardless of the learning objective, in order to be effective has to be as interactive, immersive, and engaging as possible. Fortunately, there are now a variety of presentation and slideshow creation tools that can help you to produce amazing and effective eLearning presentations and slideshows for your learners. I highly encourage you to use the following eLearning presentation and slideshows tips in order to take full advantage of them.
- Map out your strategy in advance.
Before you dive into the creation process, it's always wise to map out your entire eLearning presentation or slideshow. Develop a plan for each page and decide which elements you are going to include. You may want to consider developing a mind map or storyboard to help you with this process. Determine the flow and pace of the eLearning presentation or slideshow, so that you can design the eLearning experience around this structure. Keep in mind that organization is key when creating eLearning presentations, as it will allow you to stay on-topic and only include elements that are absolutely necessary.
- Always focus on the learning goals.
Always be aware of the learning objectives, so that you can custom tailor every aspect of the eLearning presentation to help learners get one step closer to achieving their primary goal. For example, prior choosing the ideal graphics to incorporate, decide whether or not that particular element is going to serve your learning objectives. If you haven't already figured out your learning objectives, then you may want to read the Use Perfect Learning Objectives To Boost The Quality of your e-Learning article, which highlights the basics of objective creation and implementation.
- Text should be concise, clear, and carefully crafted.
The text you include in your presentation or slideshow should be succinct and clear. Having lengthy paragraphs and run-on sentences will only distract or bore the learners. Consider adding bullet points if there is a great deal of text, or omit certain pieces of information that may be irrelevant. Also, if you are narrating the presentation, try not to include text for topics or ideas that you have already verbally presented, unless of course it's a key point that needs to be stressed. You may find valuable the 4 Tips To Choose The Right Text For Your eLearning Course article that shares invaluable tips on how you can choose the right text to make a good first impression.
- Use high quality, relevant images.
Choose high quality images and photos for your eLearning presentation in order to make it more engaging and immersive. However, remember that the images you use should be relevant to the topic-at-hand. In other words, don't just use graphics for the sake of using graphics. Also, be picky about the images you incorporate, and don't use too many on any one particular page. Last, but certainly not least, always ensure that you own the rights to the photo or that you opt for royalty free images. If you need help to select the ideal visuals, so that you can develop eLearning content that is both informative and immersive, I highly encourage you to read the 7 Tips To Choose Images And Graphics For Your eLearning Course article.
- Keep colors, branding, and overall design consistent throughout.
In terms of aesthetic appeal, few things are worse than an eLearning presentation that looks like its parts were just pieced together. In other words, the slides of your eLearning slideshow shouldn’t look as though they have been designed by different individuals. Cohesive eLearning design is a vital aspect of your eLearning slideshow or presentation as it helps learners from becoming confused. So, make sure that the colors, fonts, branding, and overall design of the project flows well and is consistent throughout the presentation or slideshow. Also, the design should effectively reflect your brand's image and message.
- Include audio or video to create a more immersive experience.
Audio or video integration is ideal, especially if you are trying to make your eLearning presentation more dynamic and interactive. Narration, background music, and video explanations are all examples of multimedia tools that you can (and should) use. Some say that videos hold the future of eLearning. If you would like to know how to effectively use videos in eLearning, I highly encourage you to read the 10 Tips To Effectively Use Videos in eLearning article.
- Embed links to references and resources.
Including links to articles, reference sites, and other web resources can give you the opportunity to expand the learning experience of your learners beyond the eLearning presentation. Rather than making the learners scour the web for these resources, you can direct them to specific sites that they may find helpful.
- Integrate real life examples.
Real life examples, such as those that your learners will encounter on the job, allow them to relate to the content. They also help them to see the value of the eLearning experience, given that they are made aware of exactly how to utilize the knowledge or skills acquired in the real world. This gives them added motivation to pay attention and absorb the information you are offering through the presentation.
- Limit the amount of time spent on each slide.
Don't spend more than 20 to 30 seconds on each page or slide. You want the eLearning presentation or slideshow to move along at a steady pace, rather than remain stagnant on a specific screen. This way, learners keep staying focus and engaged rather than get bored. Also, try to focus on one core topic or idea for each screen, if at all possible, as this can help to avoid cognitive overload.
- Don't forget about recaps and self assessments.
Even though an eLearning presentation may not be a full course, it's still important to include recaps or self-assessments to ensure that the learners are acquiring and retaining the information. For example, you can add a recap screen after every ten slides in order to summarize the concepts, or have them complete a self assessment quiz at the end of the slideshow. This will also help them to commit the information to their long-term memory, rather than forgetting about it as soon as they click away from the presentation.
Finding the slideshow and presentation creation tool that is just right for you and your instructional design needs is key. As such, when searching for the ideal program, you'll want to ensure that it offers the features and creative control you want and the usability you need. If you'd like to learn more about slideshows in eLearning, the 5 Best Free Slideshow Presentation and Creation Tools article is a must read. This article highlights the 5 best free slideshow and presentation creation tools and also features an explanation of how to use each tool, giving you the opportunity to take full advantage of each design program.