Online learning industry or elearning tools have become a widespread occurrence and, as a result, a lot of new developers have entered this field. Everyone is trying to design better and improved versions of the current elearning tools, in order to have a competitive edge, or simply to address the need of a yet untapped submarket, by developing an array of new features useful for a certain businesses.
Considering just how many updates or new tools come out on an annual basis, it is easy to miss out on some of these products. Many of these tools have ended up being underrated, despite the fact that they offer a wide array of useful features.
Also, users tend to be too critical from time to time, and a tool can end up with a few bad reviews right from the get-go, which can permanently hinder its progress, exposure, thus leaving it largely underutilized. Here we will examine five different tools that did not receive enough credit, simply because people condemned and discarded them in a haste.
Mostly criticized for its outdated Flash-based user interface, which really failed to allow users to intuitively navigate through its features, Litmos Author never got its chance to truly shine. Its form-based templates presented quite a challenge to work with and figuring it out was basically a trial and error process. Considering how the warning messages themselves were confusing Litmos literally denied its users the ability to tap into its full potential.
The tool itself actually had a variety of useful features for collaborative authoring and it could also add clients as its reviewers. Unlike its basic interface, the Media Manager for organizing resources was designed quite well, and you had access to SDK, which allowed you to add customized templates. It also has flexible publishing options like URL sharing, Tin Can, SCORM 1.2 and AICC compliant downloads.
One of the major flaws that is really hard to overlook nowadays is its HTML, which is not mobile-friendly. Moreover Lectora Online’s title explorer is prone to becoming overloaded with elements, thus making it difficult to navigate. Also, error checking has turned the publishing process into a real drag, as it was designed to validate your work prior to publishing.
Nothing inherently wrong with that premise, but it is very frustrating when you have to repeat the process multiple times. It would have been far better to validate the content as it is being saved, but developers failed to implement this feature.
Lectora Online has really good integrations, which could help with animation, and you could also create LMS compatible assignments. It also has a 30-day free trial and they also released version 2 recently. Even though it is a really good tool, only those who are already familiar with its features dare to rely on it.
This is one of the newly emerging eLearning tools, as it is still in BETA and free to use. It is a multi-device authoring tool that allows you to quickly build your courses, unfortunately some of its flaws are quite visible. For starters, the templates are form-based, which means that you have to preview your content each time you add something new.
Also, it is hard to find some of the questions templates. Additionally there are no SCORM exporting and HTML downloads, which can really impair its user acquisition potential. Lastly, it does not have tracking for student quizzes, which is something any good eLearning tool should possess.
On the plus side, it has a consistent format that looks really good, and that learners can work with. It also has the ability to share resources using a simple or private URL.
It’s hard to define Ruzuku as an elearning authoring tool, since its features make it look more like a learning repository. It is also not a learning management system, considering how it doesn’t allow for tracking student data, but it does allow you to monitor their participation.
In other words, there are limited activity options, and you need to use an outside tool like ProProfs, for example, to add questions. Moreover, page loading time isn’t something Ruzuku should be proud of, or the choice pool for styling options.
On the plus side, Ruzuku is really simple to use, which is great. You can build a simple signup page, and there is an easy way to follow knowledge base and support articles etc.
The primary flaw is that it is education only, in other words, you need a valid EDU email if you want to sign up. You can easily get lost as you work with various screen layers and elements, since it is not always clear how these elements work.
Lastly, it is not mobile-friendly. However, it does have a really good user interface, which gives it a pretty nice competitive edge. It has a clear product tour and excellent insight into the learning schedule of the students. You can also find out if a student is struggling with a particular topic.
Versal is a really good authoring tool that enables you to create interactive learning experiences for either students or employees. The problem is that some templates are easy to figure out and work with, whereas others are a nightmare.
It tends to be buggy at times, as it can sign you out for no reason, so it is safe to assume this is not a complete product. However, regardless from these flaws, people should really try it out because it has a lot of great and easy-to-use features.
These were the tools whose flaws were simply too visible, and discouraged people to look closer. It also shows just how critical the user base can really be, and that you need to be careful when designing and developing eLearning tools, since all of your amazing work can go unrecognized if you make a few mistakes.
Author Bio : Kamy Anderson is an ed-tech enthusiast with a passion for writing on emerging technologies in the areas of corporate training and education. He is an expert in learning management system & authoring tools – currently associated with ProProfs.