The 5 Essential Steps to Authoring Your Online Course (Case Study)

In this case study, Nasos Papadopoulos, founder of MetaLearn, walks through the process he used successfully for authoring an online course: Make Me a MetaLearner.

The prospect of authoring an online course can seem daunting when you’ve never done it before.

Do you script the whole thing or improvise some of it?

How long should the course be and how many videos do you need?

What material should you include and what should you leave out?

And how should you structure it so that students will achieve their goals?

The process of authoring and producing my first course, Make Me A MetaLearner, was a great learning experience for me.

As a university lecturer I’ve spent plenty of time preparing lessons and delivering them to students, but authoring an online course is a completely different ball game.

Creating my course helped me find my own answers to all the questions above and more…and it taught me a lot about what making high quality online education involves.

Looking back, I can see that a big part of the process could be broken down into five main steps, which I had to figure out by trial and error.

These steps will work for you whether you’re a beginner who’s writing your first course, or an experienced online educator who’s done it plenty of times before.

Here are the 5 steps for authoring your online online course that will take the guesswork out of the process and have you ready to record in no time. [Read more…]

A “Universal Strategy” for Course Entrepreneurs?

Chess Board - Strategy Selling Courses

Recently, I spent the day with a client’s board and various other stakeholders hashing out the strategy for their education business. This is an organization in a highly competitive learning market – lots of companies and individuals course entrepreneurs competing for business.

It was a situation where it would be easy to think that investing heavily in technology or producing the best possible courses would win the day. But, really, everyone in the market is pursuing this approach to the greatest extent possible. It is, as one astute board member put it, “table stakes” at this point.

There are, of course, some competitors in this market who will take the low price approach, but that wasn’t a strategy that made sense for my client (any more than it does for most education producers).

So, what to do?  [Read more…]

When to Consider the Udemy Model

Are you a landlord or a tenant?

If you have read much of what I’ve written on online course platforms, you know I am mostly not a fan of the approach offered by platforms like Udemy and its alternatives – what I call the “market maker” business model.

The gist of this model is that one company – basically, a “landlord” – creates a market place in which individual course producers or other companies – basically, “tenants” – can sell their courses, usually in exchange for paying the landlord a share of the revenue.

Now, if you happen to be the landlord – as Udemy is – this model is fantastic. You create a highly-scalable content engine that generates a continuous revenue stream. If you are the tenant, on the other hand, this model usually limits your options in a number of ways, including: [Read more…]

The Only Real Objection to Buying Your Online Course

Objections to Buying - Photo of female hand, stretched out, palm facing out

I was advising a friend recently on his course launch and he noted that a number of prospective buyers had told him the course was too expensive.

Others told him they didn’t have the time.

These are easily the two most common objections to buying an online courses, but neither of them is the real objection. [Read more…]

How to Create an Online Course to Sell

There is a lot information out there about how to market online courses and about the various online course creation tools and online course platforms that are available. I hear quite often from readers, though, that it is much harder to find high quality  information on how to create an online course.

In other words, how do you take your ideas and actually turn them into a course experience?

I’ve heard about this need enough from readers – and seen so much fluff advice out there –  that I decided it was past time I wrote a comprehensive post on the topic. So, that’s just what this is: a comprehensive post on how to create an online course. [Read more…]