The 5 Steps of Course Creation

December 23, 2021
A beautiful cake sitting on a cake stand.

If you understand the 5 layers of content creation, building any course is a piece of cake! Simply work through each of these steps one at a time.

The 5 Layers of Course Creation

1 - Outline and structure of your course.

To start your new course, give the course a name and add a description. Then create each lesson and section you will need to complete your course objectives.

As you consider your outline, place all of your lessons and sections in the order that allows each concept to build on each other. Remember, this can all be edited any time you need. This is also an opportunity to add quiz place holders if you feel that testing will aid your course.

2 - Write and place the copy for each section of your course.

For now, don't worry about pictures, videos, or graphics. Simply focus on the words and instructions needed for your students to understand the the course material. This will create the foundation of your lesson. Place each explanation where you need them with simple, direct words.

With this phase complete, you have a fully functional course on your hands. If you have a willing student to test your course, you can actually use this opportunity to assign the course to test the flow of each concept to the next. You can review copy, flow, instructions and more. You will find that the copy of your course will continue to evolve over time, but having this foundation is going to be essential to beginning the next phase of your course development. 

3 - Add Images and Graphics that will aid in your course content. 

It is important here to focus on needs. Don't overwhelm yourself with creating images beyond explanative needs first. Can information be better expressed through an image? Create or find those images now. If you find that the written explanation is enough, then move on to the sections of your lesson that need more.

As you continue to develop each layer of your training course, you will begin to see where your time is going to be the most important in the development of your course. The key here is using your time most efficiently. 

4 - Add Activities that continue to boost the learning experience.  

Begin to target the sections of your course that need an extra push to aid your students in understanding the concepts you have to teach. Create flash cards, add image hotspots, sorting and organizing activities, and any other lesson block that will help get your point across. The time you spend to build these activities should aid in the learning process.

If you have students who express difficulty in understanding a section, consider expanding that section first with activities to solve the information gap your students need.

5 - Create custom media to aid in your course. 

Now is the time to consider the most important elements of your course. Any course concept that has not been fully expressed through copy, images, or activities could be aided with customized media. Use this time now to create any media you need to complete the learning experience. This can include videos, animations, and other customized content.

Make sure to balance your time based on your course needs. Your time is valuable, so only build what is necessary. You will find that some things work just fine as copy, simple graphics, and activities. If you already plan to create videos for each section of your lesson, order the production of your customized content by necessity.

The creation of customized media was designated as the last step specifically so that you don't get caught up in the creation process. You will find that as you build out each section in steps 1-4 that you might not need a video as quickly as you thought you did. Allowing this step to be last you can actually deploy your course quicker and allow your students to dictate what they need more information on.

As your course continues to grow, you can add, improve, and replace any section element with stronger content. You will find that course completion and feedback will aid you in knowing where you need to place your time. 

Layer by layer, your course will be ready for the people who need the training you have to offer!