February 5th, 2014 E-Learning


While every elearning development project is unique in regards to the content, there are some aspects that span across them all, and one of those aspects are the key roles.

Defining the roles of team members is one of the most important things you will do for any elearning development project. For starters, it prevents everyone from stepping on each other’s toes. In other words, you don’t have any rework because of responsibility overlap, and (hopefully) nothing falls through the cracks.

Clearly defined roles is a great way to prevent this from happening. Setting-up the responsibilities of each role will help to maintain expectations throughout the project as well. It is a good idea to keep the final role document somewhere it can be easily accessed so that new team members can get acquainted with expectations.

What are the Key Roles?

Some projects will have more roles, but in general you can count on having at least the following below involved with any elearning development project. Please note that these definitions are hardly specific. On your projects, you will want to define them at a greater level, particularly with specific responsibilities.

Project Manager – Pretty self-explanatory, the project manager is the go-to person for all decisions related to the project. If problems arise, they are filtered up to the Project Manager and he or she raises it with the other key stakeholders (usually higher level executives).

This person is also responsible for creating and driving the project plan, which involves keeping the project in scope and ensuring quality control across all deliverables.

ELearning Developer – Also known as the instructional designer, this role is the one that is creating the course storyboards and developing the content in a rapid elearning software program. They often interact with the next role.

Subject Matter Experts – This is the role that has specific knowledge about the content of the training courses. They work hand-in-hand with the Elearning Developer to answer questions and ultimately sign-off on the content.

Visual Designer – This role is sometimes shared with the ELearning Developer, but not always (nor should it be). The visual designer is the one who creates the graphs and diagrams for the courses that ultimately lend to the learning. They can also be the ones responsible for compiling job aids.

Systems Administrator – Most elearning projects have someone who is responsible for the technical architecture of the learning management system. Sometimes this person is only partially  involved (for example, an  I.T. Specialist). They usually have multiple responsibilities from an I.T. perspective, one of which is managing the LMS. They are critical to the successful delivery of the content.

Bickford 2008

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About Justin Ferriman

Justin Ferriman started LearnDash, the WordPress LMS trusted by Fortune 500 companies, major universities, training organizations, and entrepreneurs worldwide for creating (and selling) their online courses. Justin's Homepage | Twitter

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