Tuesday, March 4, 2014

There is No "PowerPoint"

So often I get a call from subject matter experts (SME) and other stakeholders regarding elearning courses asking, "Can't you just send me the PowerPoint?" My answer of "There is no PowerPoint" is usually not received well and followed by a tone of disbelief. I don't deny them a PowerPoint because they will probably compromise the instructional integrity of the courses, which is possible, or because I am selfish. It is usually because the course simply wasn't made in PowerPoint or only portions of the development process was made using PowerPoint and what they would get would be fragments of a course at best. However, when people outside of eLearning see the final product they associate it with the closest thing they are familar with in their world, which is PowerPoint. 

So, here is the deal:

Most courses are developed with tools that are not PowerPoint. For example, Captivate, Flash, ToolBook, Storyline, etc. All of which I have used and been asked to "send the PowerPoint."

Some development tools use PowerPoint as an initial interface, but it is in combination with eLearning development applications. An example I have is Articulate Studio. This can be difficulty to explain to the SME that is eager to get hold of your elusive "slides." This is especially true when they have seen you working in PowerPoint when story boarding or other early stages of development. 

So, the moral of the story is let your SMEs know up front about the development tools you will use and what deliverables can and will be provided. 

Feel free to add your comments and opinions. I'd love to hear if you have had similar experiences and how you've addressed it. Thanks. 

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