Friday, August 8, 2008

The Ultimate Question About Learning Content Development


The Hitchhiker's Guide to the Galaxy introduces us to the story of the Ultimate Question about Life, The Universe and Everything. If there is such a question in training content development, it is How long does it take to create one hour of learning? Of course, it would be wonderful if the answer was as simple as 42. Bryan Chapman of Brandon Hall Research lists his findings based on various research reports by Brandon Hall. Read his full post here. Bryan lists the ratios for different types of learning.
Ratio for each Type of learning

34:1 Instructor-Led Training (ILT), including design, lesson plans, handouts, PowerPoint slides, etc.

33:1 PowerPoint to E-Learning Conversion. Not sure why it takes less time then creating ILT, but that's what we discovered when surveying 200 companies about this practice

220:1 Standard e-learning which includes presentation, audio, some video, test questions, and 20% interactivity

345:1 Time it takes for online learning publishers to design, create, test and package 3rd party courseware

750:1 Simulations from scratch. Creating highly interactive content

Clark Aldrich attempts to answer the question in terms of cost. How much does it cost the organizations to access an educational simulation.

Both questions in my mind are part of the ultimate question on learning and training content development. I am sure you've been asked this question many times. I surely have been, heck I have even set targets for my teams. Is there a single answer to this question? The research surely provides a ball park number to compare against. However there are too many variables, and what you achieve or wish to achieve may depend on many other parameters and business goals.

2 comments:

Clark Aldrich said...

Submitted on 2008/08/09 at 12:18am

The other ultimate question may be time. The development time of a great simulation today is also on the long side for most corporations. There may even be more pressure immediately to reduce development time than reduce cost.

Manish Mohan on January 8, 2010 at 2:44 PM said...

Submitted on 2008/08/09 at 7:33pm

That right Clark. I guess the Ultimate Question about Learning and Content Development can be divided into three parts:

- How much effort does it take (hrs/hr)?
- How much does it cost ($/hr)?
- How soon can it be done (weeks/days per project, usually required yesterday)?

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