Qualities of an Effective Online Course Content


With the growing educational technology, online courses are becoming popular and the new preference of educators and learners. Teachers look for platforms to create and sell online courses for enjoying benefits like better flexibility, convenience, comfort, cost-effectiveness, additional income, and professional growth. To make an online course successful, teachers have to make consistent efforts, be smart, and do proper planning, and development. Along with all this, the most important element to focus on is building effective online course study material. The more effective the online course content, the better the learning outcomes, learner results, and course sales respectively. Let us discuss the key qualities of an effective online course study content.

6 qualities of an effective online course content

Quality 1: The content should be understandable

In online courses, physical meet-ups with teachers are not possible. Because of this, understanding and instant doubt resolution sometimes become difficult for students. To provide them with a smooth self-paced learning experience, the course content should be understandable. Video lectures and video presentations should have an easy and simple language. Complex vocabulary, terms, phrases, and English should not be used. Keep it less fancy and more understandable. Also, teachers should not share too much information with the learners. Stick to the curriculum, share to the point, and specific lesson information only.

Quality 2: It should meet the learner’s expectations and needs

The main purpose of joining any online course for students is to grow in academic, professional, and social life. An effective online course should meet the learner’s expectations and needs. The course will only be successful when learners are benefited from it. To do so the course content should be designed as per the understanding level, demands, and expectations of students.

 Not all learners have the same learning and thought processes. Keeping in mind different learning styles, ideal online course content should be made. Online course creators can take feedback, and conduct surveys and online polls to know learning needs, how effective they are finding the current study material, and reviews for improvement.

Quality 3: It should be divided into manageable pieces

Students have short attention spans, and also this reduces more when they have to study via computer or mobile screens. Watching a detailed video lecture of a long duration can be exhausting, boring, and less understandable for students. They might get bored and off the video in between. This will break the flow of learning and affect course results.

An ideal online course study material should be divided into manageable chunks. Instead of making one single video on the whole lesson, educators should make short video segments. Explanation videos, short summaries, a quick recap, etc, like these manageable and digestible videos, can be made for learners.

Quality 4: The online study material should be interesting and engaging

Effective online course material should be interesting and engaging for the learners. In online courses, students sometimes feel isolated and less motivated. However, when an online study material should be interesting these problems will not occur. It should have audio-visual elements like infographics, picture cards, PowerPoint presentations, educational videos, and animations. With the help of visualization, students tend to understand the concepts better and more quickly.

Quality 5: It should ensure  active learning

Listening to the video lectures and reading the e-books is not enough. Along with effective teaching, an online course study material should also ensure active learning practices. Active learning means making students take an effort and be more involved with their studies. To do so, the online study material should have quizzes. Quizzes are very effective to make students more active and improve their logical and critical thinking skills. In video lectures and video presentations, quizzes can be included. Quizzes can be made in form format including questions like tick the correct option, answer in one word, true or false, fill in the blanks, and more. Learning assessments, riddles, and puzzles also improve active learning.

Quality 6: It should be easy to access

On the online course selling website, the study content should be uploaded in a systematic way or educators can mail it to the students separately at their respective email addresses. This will ensure that online course content is easily accessible to all learners. Try to keep it mobile-friendly too. This will help learners to access the content from any place and at any time as mobile phones are pocket friendly, owned by all, and are carried along everywhere.


For effective online teaching and learning, having quality study material is very important. By reading the above-mentioned information, we can make out the qualities of an effective online course study content. This ensures smooth learning, better learning outcomes, and sales respectively.