Can you build a course in 15 minutes? (and free Articulate Templates)

Posted by Michael Culligan, LINGOs

The other night I saw a Geico advertisement that touted “this commercial was made in only 15 minutes!” 

Sure, the commercial is kitschy, but 15 minutes!   This got me thinking, could I develop a course in 15 minutes?   Well you could argue that a commercial is a lot different than a course.  The concepts in television commercials are so simple.  The messages are designed to be very short.  Wouldn’t learning topics require different mechanisms than those of a television commercial?

Not necessarily, just this week I discovered a You Tube video that employs the  same software Geico used (try it free at )  to critique the  “quantitative easing” policy recently introduced by the Federal Reserve. Talk about a boring topic!  It is complex, convoluted, arcane and technical.   And yet, the video takes this very polarizing and complicated topic and puts it into a format that keeps people engaged for seven minutes. While you might disagree with the critique presented in the video (and many do), focus on the fact that the developers have successfully developed a rapid, inexpensive communication mechanism that has already been shared with nearly 3 million people!

A recent post on the Articulate community site examines ways the videos created by XtraNormal can be used in the e-learning context.  The video’s author shows viewers how to embed XtraNormal videos  into her elearning course.  She uses the videos to simulate conversations between co-workers, providing  scenario based conversations for e-learning.   Clearly,  this is a technology that has many weaknesses, but it is yet another example of the directions in which technology is moving to make rapid e-learning a more accessible and less expensive option for everyone.

AND NOW FOR THE FREE TEMPLATES: The XtraNormal software product is one example of a great resource I learned about via Tom Kuhlmann’s Rapid e-Learning Blog (I highly recommend you all sign up for his e-mails.) Another great example of resources I learned about through the blog is a set of Articulate Presenter templates that is available for free until January 1st. Learn more about these free course templates. Be sure to scroll to the bottom of the screen to find the link to the free templates. You will need your Articulate Rapid eLearning Studio license key to receive the templates.

One thought on “Can you build a course in 15 minutes? (and free Articulate Templates)

  1. Xtranormal is a great tool, especially as it can be used for free. I find it very useful to help with student motivation. I ask learners to create movies of their own and most seem to enjoy producing something that they can show or send to family and friends. I am also a user of Articulate studio and love how it can be used to rapidly create elearning content. I have found Articulate Templates useful to help speed up my work flow but perhaps 15 minutes to creata a course is pushing it.

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