Posted in Blog on 4 November 2015
You are looking to convert your higher education legacy content into digital curriculum, and now have to evaluate which e-learning company can help you create an online course effectively.
Here are some ways you can check which vendors are right for you.
Many institutions including the US Federal Contractor Registration and the System for Award Management (SAM) help buyers ensure that the vendor they are looking into is aware of government and federal regulations and are aligned to the systems award process. Vendors that do not have an active Federal registration cannot do business with the Federal Government.
Questions to ask: Have you been certified by any federal body? Can I get a list of the certifications?
Similarly, before outsourcing to an e-learning company check to see if they have been recognized by their own industry through awards or quality process assurances which can tell you more about how good your final online learning courses will be.
Question to ask: Have you been recognized by any quality process organization, industry body or peer group for your work?
Many e-learning organizations simply “convert” lessons into a digitized format and they are done. To be able to obtain true learning value from online systems, your vendor needs to understand a great deal more about the learning process and the pedagogy that goes into creating an online learning course.
Question to ask: How many learning experts are with your team and can I see their profiles?
Proven Prior Experience
While many e-learning companies often come to the table based on a previous case study or course they have created, not all online learning companies have sufficient course creation expertise under their belt, to be able to handle the volume of a HigherEd curriculum.
Question to ask: What courses have you created for an institution similar to ours?
Value to the Table
An expert in e-learning should know more about creating digital courses than you do. If your vendor is agreeing to everything you say and want, then perhaps that is not the case. Experts bring in their previous knowledge so that you can avoid making the same mistakes. To anticipate if your vendor is going to bring value to the table, observe if your e-learning partner questions and improves upon your vision.
Question(s) to ask: Is this the best approach? In what others ways can we improve our digital curriculum?
There is nothing like talking to someone who has already been through the entire process with the e-learning company. A good reference in addition to recommending the vendor, should also be able to tell you how to avoid regular project delays, validate the process the vendor has shared with you, and help you reinforce or re-evaluate your expectations from the course outcomes.
Question to ask: Can you put me in touch with a few references (from profiles similar to mine/ours)?
Sometimes the person or people you are talking to are not going to be the people you engage with on a weekly basis as your digital courses are designed and developed. Find out who this contact person is going to be and evaluate if you think they will be a good match for your institution.
Question to ask: Who will be managing this project? Can I view their profile(s)?Tagged in: digital curriculum, elearning