When publishing digital learning content, staying relevant is more important than ever. Educators and students alike are able to find the latest information easily on the web and expect learning materials to be up to date. Creating a digital textbook that serves its purpose well requires ongoing commitment to keeping content fresh and current with maximum efficiency. So you’ve already created your first online textbook? Fantastic! Read on to learn the best ways to keep your digital textbook relevant in a quickly-changing online arena.
Create Clear Learning Outcomes
In order to have ongoing relevancy, it’s imperative to have a decisive vision for each textbook. Keep a straightforward summary of the educational goals the textbook seeks to meet. Be sure to keep your audience in mind as well. By writing down a clear purpose for the textbook, you provide a steady foundation for quality content creation. Always refer back to this outline during any future edits and assess its relevancy. Are the original goals still serving the project and its audience well? If not, make any necessary modifications. When you proceed with your edits, this will give you a solid point of reference to ensure any new content maintains a sense of continuity and aligns with the proposed learning outcomes.
Update Content Frequently
Information travels faster than ever before. To stay relevant, updating content often is critical. Publishing an online textbook is rarely a one-time gig- if online content doesn’t keep up with new advancements, it’s of no more use than an old hard-copy textbook. Plan a yearly schedule to manage and update online textbook material so your content is always up to par. While you’re at it, assess whether your learning content is due for a design update as well.
Stay Abreast of Educational Trends
As with any other business, it’s vital to keep an eye on the competition. If the other guy is offering more intuitive design, more frequent updates, or more interactive material, evaluate your own content for improvement. Consider how you can build upon recent innovations to create the best possible experience for students and educators alike.
Create Learning Objects That Are Easily Customizable
In all likelihood, you’ve already done your research about reusable learning objects. RLOs are a publishing buzzword for a reason. To stay relevant, content must be current. To update content easily, learning objects must be designed to be easily adapted for new and evolving applications. The key is striking a balance between targeted content and a customizable experience. While tricky to achieve, a good reusable learning object will save your team hours of work recreating content that only needs slight to moderate adjustments.
Use Metadata Wisely
Don’t forget about creating well thought out metadata for each RLO. To make the most of your digital content and keep it relevant as long as possible, you’ll need to be able to modify it. This only works if you can find it first! Keep your learning objects organized and easy to find, and you’ll find it much easier to update and customize content.
Why it Matters
Though it may seem like a hassle to return to a finished online learning project, taking the time to improve your existing content is well worth it. An online textbook that is updated with ever improving design, smart customization, and current material that achieves learning objectives is one that holds relevancy. Since a textbook that stays relevant holds its value, it’s best to make those pesky updates a priority. Choose your content creation program wisely. Gutenberg’s authoring platform is an ideal way to keep your digital textbooks relevant as painlessly as possible.
You can easily create courseware and using these microlearning design tips using MyEcontentFactory. Our authoring tool allows you to import content, media, and assessments, make real-time changes and collaborate with your colleagues.