Online learning design for lockdown

Mother and baby working on laptop from home

Many businesses have been forced to work remotely, during the Covid-19 pandemic. Any learning you had planned is also on pause, but it doesn’t have to be.

Despite current challenges, there are many ways you can design online learning so that it works wherever you, or your team are. We’re going to share a few tips, so that you can successfully push out learning to your team during lockdown.

Creating new content

For many people, workplace learning is done face to face in a classroom. So, you either have your content ready to go or you had a plan and were yet to create the content. There are ways you can slightly alter this to create online learning.

You may find that your content needs to be slightly altered to address the current situation. Rules, regulations and procedures are changing each day. Once you’ve decided how to transform your learning to online learning you can alter your content plan with any important updates.

Video calls

If you already have content ready, there are a few options. Firstly, you can teach virtually through video calls. This can be easily done through platforms such as Zoom, Google Hangouts, Skype and many others. Just choose the best option for you and your organisation.

Video calling is a great way to really imitate classroom learning. You will be able to have and see your whole team in one place and at one time.

Video production

Another option for you, is to record yourself teaching the content and then making it into an elearning module or course. You can easily do this using an authoring tool. Don’t be scared to record your own videos. You don’t need a high tech camera, or lighting. You can simply use your phone and ensure you’re in a quiet space so that you can be heard, with no distractions.

If you don’t want to record yourself and your content is something that can be recorded on screen you can do that. Screen recordings are a great way of showing technical things, like how to edit a video or how to use a new tool. You can add a voice over, or even create a document of instructions to go alongside your video for extra support.

Once you have your content, you can upload it to an authoring tool, like Near-Life™ CREATOR. With most authoring tools you can then customise your content. You can add text, interactivity, buttons, questions, quizzes, timers and so on.


If you’re not confident enough to record yourself, or don’t have the means to do so you can always animate your learning. There are many platforms out there such as Powtoon and Toonly which make it easy for you to create your own animations in a very short time.

If you already have a plan or content ready, it shouldn’t be too difficult to transfer it across into an animation with these easy tools. Animation can completely change your learning from what it used to be, it can bring more excitement and engagement to your learning content as it’s something different.

Who knows, you and your team may prefer it and you may never have to do as much classroom teaching again!

Re-purpose existing content

If you already have existing learning content, don’t be afraid to use it. It will save you both time and money – bonus!

You can use all of your content in the same way. Or you can incorporate snippets of different things with some added extras. It won’t matter as long as it’s relevant and can maintain some of the plans you had pre-lockdown.

If you want to use video calling you can create a video or presentation and screen share within the call. If you would like to record yourself teaching don’t be worried if you have taught it before. The fact that the lesson will be virtual will make a difference. Plus, it’s a great way to refresh knowledge with some added updates, if needed.

If you usually would use video or similar media to teach, you can use an authoring tool to repurpose it. Upload your content to an authoring tool and customise it how you wish. This in itself will make the content slightly different to when it has been used before.

Finally, don’t forget you can also animate existing content. With your content already there, it may be easier and will take your learning to the next level.

Engaging, virtual learning

This is your chance to make your content engaging and exciting away from the classroom. Online learning may show you that there are various pieces of technology that can spruce up your usual methods.

Usually, you may not have tested your learners but now is the time to do it. Doing this will help you to understand if teaching through an online environment is working. It will show if some of your team learn better this way or face to face. The data you get from your tests will help you to plan what needs to be taught in the future.

More importantly, it will show if your team is taking part without the added pressure of attending a classroom session.

If you’re using an authoring tool to create your learning, you can add in interactions. These are a good way to keep your learners engaged. You can really connect with them and immerse them into the learning.

Near-Life™ learning

At Near-Life™ we use interactive video to engage learners. Learners are presented with real-life challenges throughout the modules and have to make decisions within a realistic time frame. The video then progresses depending on the choice they make. This is a good way to teach the correct and incorrect ways and for them to understand why.

By using this method and storytelling together, we found that learners retain knowledge better and are more engaged. Whilst you may be nervous about online learning, we can ensure that teaching this way does have it’s benefits.

Near-Life™ CREATOR is an easy way for you to create immersive learning scenarios. You can upload your own content, and begin creating a story for your learners with challenges they would face on the job.

Our tool is cloud based and you can integrate it into any LMS, or share content on a website of your choice. We wanted to make it easy for you as a learning designer, to quickly make modules or courses without any technical skills. More importantly, we wanted to make it easier for you to take your learning online – something that is key within our current challenges.

So, why should you resume your learning during lockdown?

With all of the tools out there, and the technology we have there’s no reason for learning to stop. At first, you may find it daunting or time consuming but the tools available make it easy for you to create engaging, immersive and fun learning away from the classroom.

Not only that, it also means your learning can become more flexible and can save money with no classroom costs. Additionally, your learning will become more customisable and scalable for the future.

Taking your learning online can really bring your team back together, and give them something new to look forward to. Give it a go, you won’t look back!

Need to find out more? Get in touch with our team.

Request a Demo