Hours to build an eLearning course?

Here’s the question every producer wants to know the answer to:  How long does it take to develop an eLearning course?

External Source:

  • ASTD, 2009 – http://www.astd.org/LC/2009/0809_kapp.htm
    • With a Template (using software such as Flash, [SmartBuilder]):
      • Text-only; limited interactivity; no animations (93-153 hours/hour of instruction)
      • Moderate interactivity; limited animations (122-186 hours/hour of instruction)
      • High interactivity; multiple animations (154-243 hours/hour of instruction)
    • Without a Template (using software such as Lectora, Captivate,ToolBook):
      • Limited interactivity; no animations  (118-365 hours/hour of instruction)
      • Moderate interactivity; limited animations (90-240 hours/hour of instruction)
      • High interactivity; multiple animations (136-324 hours/hour of instruction)

My Experience:

  • Template
    • This is the “Master Page” in SmartBuilder.  It also includes all of the navigations and variables and events that links the course together.  For the purpose of this estimate, a “floating eLearning object” (referenced below) can be added to a template to comprise a self-contained course.
      • Depending on how many elements are included and how much communication there is between pages, developing a template to house your content can take me 20-80 hours.
  • Floating eLearning objects (learning object is not a self-contained lesson):
    • Limited/No-Interaction (SmartBuilder)
      • Typically a Typically a 60-minute basic interactive eLearning course (without audio) can take about 2-3 weeks to develop (80-120 hrs). This is an average timeframe for one developer who is 100% dedicated to the project. Design is not included here, which can take 1-2 weeks (40-80 hrs) with one Instructional Designer working 100% on the project. * (without audio) can take about 2-3 weeks to develop (80-120 hrs). This is an average timeframe for one developer who is 100% dedicated to the project. Design is not included here, which can take 1-2 weeks (40-80 hrs) with one Instructional Designer working 100% on the project.  (This is my opinion, not based on any specific project, because honestly, who would design an hour-long course in the first place?)
    • Moderate interactivity (SmartBuilder)
      • Same conditions as above; (200±40 development hours/hour of seat time)
    • High interactivity (SmartBuilder)
      • Same conditions as above (300+hours)

I recommend talking to Pope for another estimate.  He would be able to tell you off the top of his head things you are wanting to know, if he were developing an eLearning course.

/Bryan

*Note:

    • “60 minute basic interactive eLearning course” (basically, just reading) = 1 minute/page
    • Moderate interaction (doing more than just using eyes) = 3-5 minutes/page
    • High interaction (higher levels of kirkpatrick model or Bloom’s taxonomy) = 7+minutes/page
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About bryantanner

I'm obsessed with learning via the appropriate technology. My professional mission is to effectively deliver instruction to learners in a way that yields the greatest results for all stakeholders involved.
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