Building your online course is an exciting time. It’s easy to get carried away and make a few mistakes. It happens to everyone.

The idea here is to try and prevent some common mistakes that course builders go through every day. This will help you get your course created and out to eager learners faster.

While creating your first online course is a major learning experience, you’ll be glad you did when your first student tells you “thank you.” After this first course, you’ll find creating additional courses is a much easier process.

Building The Course Without Any Feedback

You know what you want to teach, so building your online course should be easy, right? Unless you’re talking to potential students before you start building, you may find that you’ve created a course that no one wants. According to feedback from multiple course creators, one of the biggest mistakes you can make is not getting course feedback throughout the process. From day one, involve your target audience. Their feedback is what helps you create the types of courses they want to take.

Putting Everything Imaginable In A Single Course

This may be one of the hardest things about building your online course. You have so much you want to teach that you just lump it all into one big course. There’s a reason why so many people balk at the idea of reading War and Peace – it’s length is too intimidating. The same thing applies to online courses. Keep it focused on a single topic and build more courses to handle other aspects. It’s easier on students and allows you to go more in-depth on specific areas.

oops - what not to do when building your online courseNot Realizing There’s More Than Just The Course

Creating the course content isn’t all that’s involved in building online courses. It’s a common mistake that takes many course creators by surprise. You have to think about the course design, number of modules, platforms, marketing and more. Create a step-by-step plan for each aspect of the course building process to avoid being overwhelmed and to ensure your course’s success.

Creating Overly Long Sections Or Modules

Assume that your audience has a short attention span. Part of the appeal of online learning is convenience, which means a course with lengthy sections or modules may not be that popular. For best results, break your course into bite sized sections. One creator recommends sections between 15 and 30 minutes. Of course, you should test this with your target students to see what works best for their needs. Try to break up your course with assignments or quizzes to test your students’ understanding.

Waiting Until The End To Decide On A Platform

Have you decided on a platform for your course yet? You can create your own website, use hosted sites or use a marketplace platform. Each has its own benefits, but depending on which you choose, there may be some restrictions, such as specific module lengths or a limited amount that you can charge. Knowing where your course will be hosted online helps you when building your online course.

Expecting Students Know What To Do

It’s easy to get so focused on the course content, that you forget about one important thing – course guidelines. While some students may understand what you’re asking them to do immediately, others are new to e-learning. Offer guidance on how to proceed through modules, how much time they should be spending on assignments, how grading works and the benefits of discussions with other students (if that’s any option). The clearer the guidelines, the easier it’ll be for students to work through the course effectively.

Have questions on building your online course? Contact me today and I’ll be to help you get started.

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