How to Be Objective in Your Training Evaluations

Over the years, I’ve evaluated thousands of courses from hundreds of providers as Director of Content, and I’ve come to the conclusion that what I like in an eLearning course often varies from what others like, and visa versa. Our team regularly reviews feedback from end users to ensure we have the right quality courses in our marketplace. It always amazes me to see one person who rates a course with 5/5 and comments, “I loved the course, this is exactly what I needed” next to someone who rates the very same course with 1/5 stating, “This was not what I was looking for.”

Lets face it, evaluating eLearning courses is difficult. There are literally hundreds of content providers, thousands of eLearning courses and they all claim to design effective eLearning courseware. The problem is compounded when you have multiple stakeholders as is often the case when deploying an eLearning solution. You’ll undoubtedly get many different opinions on what people like and dislike. Options are useful, but don’t help drive a decision on where to spend your training dollars.

You may be asking yourself, “How can I easily make a decision on what course provider to use when a team of people are involved, all with varying opinions and backgrounds?” Have no fear, there are some simple techniques you can use to aid in the process while keeping your project on time and on budget.

What is most important, especially with multiple stakeholders, is to create a specific unbiased set of criteria by which the eLearning providers will be critiqued. While answers to questions like, “Share your thoughts on providing this online training course for our staff” are useful, it will undoubtedly yield results that leave you no closer to making a decision.

When developing your evaluation, keep your organization’s culture and past experiences in mind. Try to remove as many subjective questions from the evaluation process as possible. If for example, deploying courses that are 30 minutes or less is important to you, make sure you ask questions like, “Did the course take you less than 30 minutes to complete?” — see how the response is simply yes or no?

Some other examples include:

Does the course provide access to learning activities?
Does the course provide access to supplemental learning materials?
Is the course mobile compatible? Does the course contain a post-assessment?

These questions yield simple, clear answers and removes any bias or subjectivity from the selection process which will ultimately make it easy to suggest a recommended solution to your stakeholders. If you need help along the way, OpenSesame is here to help with evaluation templates you can use to aid your decision making process.