From the latest surveys, report and studies, it’s obvious that there isn’t any signs of slowing down in E-leaning industry. In fact, an increasing number of individuals, institutions and corporations are turning to e-learning because of its effectiveness and its convenience. As a result, there are more and more vendors launching the new e-learning authoring tools to meet the need of creating e-learning contents.
The purpose of some authoring tools concentrates on creating courses. However, there are a number of multipurpose tools which are not specialized for creating online courses but are used. Unspecialized tools such as MS PowerPoint, Flash, FrontPage may require good command in technology. While other specialized tools are quite intuitive and don’t require training.
Avinasolutions.com will introduce you some E-learning authoring tool in the market classified based on the purpose.
Unspecialized Authoring Tools
MS PowerPoint is presentation software used to create slideshow. The slides are usually linear and can include hyperlinks to jump to other sections. This allows the user to get to more detail on a subject of interest. In addition, it allow user to add audio and video clips in a presentation (Kurtus 2006). Even though this tool is mainly for creating presentation, it is considered to be one of the most popular course authoring tools.
MS PowerPoint plays a significant role in developing course authoring tools. Many professional course authoring tools are based on PowerPoint or use its structure. However, testing and scoring are not easy in PowerPoint.
Flash has become a popular method for adding animation and interactivity to web pages. Flash is commonly used to create animation, advertisements, and various web page Flash components, to integrate video into web pages, and more recently, to develop rich Internet applications (Wikipedia). Therefore, some course authors prefer using flash, because it allows many features and programming using Action Script. This helps them to create tests and quizzes in attractive way. However, this tool is complex and need professionals.
FrontPage and Dreamwaver
These tools used to create WebPages. They provide an easy way to create links and images without need to know about HTML. However, these tools alone can not provide the interactive course. It needs the help of other tools and graphics designers.
Specialized Authoring Tools
The growing of elearning leads to create special authoring tools that help authors and fulfill the needs for creating course in easy way. The following are the most popular courses authoring tools.
Avina Authoring Tool
Avina Authoring tool is full-featured software which includes many functions meeting a need of creating an e-learning content: Media, AMindmap, Quiz, Chart and graph and Import from PPT and ODP. The software allows you to add narration and sync to help audience better understand the lessons. You can create an impressive and engaging e-learning content conveniently by using media, quiz & chart, Amindmap without switching to another software.
In Articulate Studio Package the most three important authoring tools are Presenter, Engage and Quiz Maker. These authoring tools are used inside MS PowerPoint. The Presenter allows adding interactivity and narration compiling to create flash presentation. In addition, it provides features to get attention and inspire learning.
Adobe Presenter help to easily create professional Flash presentations and self- paced courses complete with narration and interactivity. In addition, it allows adding animations, quizzes, and software simulations to e-Learning courses (adobe 2009). Similar to articulate, this tool is also based on MS PowerPoint.
Adobe Captivate can rapidly author professional e-Learning content with advanced interactivity, simulations, quizzes, and other engaging experiences — no programming or multimedia skills required (Adobe 2009). However, Captivate does not need MS PowerPoint because it is independent. In fact, it has features as which in Flash that make this tool professional.
Course Lab is a powerful, easy-to-use, e- learning authoring tool that offers programming-free and WYSIWYG environment for creating high-quality interactive e-learning content. This tool is somehow similar to captivate but it is free.
Generally, all the specialized tools mention above have the feature to:
• Publish to HTML package.
• Publish to CD-ROM.
• Publish to SCORM 1.2 and SCORM 2004 package for import to any LMS supporting this standard.
GLO Maker is an authoring tool for creating rich, interactive learning resources. It builds on the extensive experience of the Centre for Excellence in Teaching and Learning (CETL) in Reusable Learning Objects. It is open source and free for educational use.
GLO Maker authoring tool is based on the new concept. Generative Learning Objects (GLO) approach inverts traditional approach for reusability. The traditional approach to the reuse of learning objects has been to separate content from context in order to make the content reusable.