In Conversation with Harman | Build Your Branded Teaching/Training Online Academy Platform
A few weeks ago, I presented a webinar, Build Your Own Teaching/Training Online Academy Platform. Although I tried my best to answer all the questions asked during the webinar, I couldn’t crunch all of them during the session due to time constraint. So, here are my answers to all of those unanswered questions that couldn’t be covered earlier.
Do we need to prepare whole courses in one go before engaging learners?
Harman: I understand that creating courses takes time and a lot of effort and you need something easier to start engaging the learners.To begin with, you don’t need to add the entire content to your course at once. You can do one of the following things:
- You can create a self-paced course (with videos, presentations, documents that you might already have) along with tests (optional) or you can create, live instructor-led course which can have live online classes in a week-by-week schedule or format. You can add content to your course as you go along.
- You can create a live class (also called a webinar) instead of creating a course. This is much easier and you can make it open (anyone can join) or invite-only.
Also, we are launching two new features soon.
- Create a Test: Using this, you will be able to create a stand-alone test i.e. without having to create a course and make it open or invite-only.
- Upload content (video, presentation) in public space: This will allow you to upload a video or a document (presentation, Word document, PDF) i.e. without having to create a course and make it open or invite-only.
Can we advertise through WizIQ and how can we reach our specific market?
While you will not be able to advertize on WizIQ, we are coming up with other ways of doing this soon. You will be updated about this soon.
How do pricing plans work?
New, upcoming pricing plans of Online Academy are going to be structured more like this:
- Free Plan: A lifetime free plan that would let you use a lot of features, with a limited number of learners.
- Plan A (for self-paced): A plan specifically designed if you are only interested in delivering self-paced courses.
- Plan B (for self-paced and live, instructor-led): This is an all-feature plan with which you will be able to deliver self-paced as well as live, instructor-led courses.
The premium plans (Plans A and B) will be highly affordable.
Since there are too many instructors teaching a particular subject, how does WizIQ determine quality?
We offer a software platform that empowers teachers. Anyone interested in teaching can create their own online academy using WizIQ Online Academy. Therefore, quality is something we let the academy owners determine on their own. It’s very similar to Shopify, a platform that let’s anyone build their online retail store or WordPress that lets people interested in blogging create their own blogging website.
What is the difference between online learning and mobile learning?
I personally believe that in a few years mobile learning is going to take over desktop-based online learning. While, both are online, the difference is of the device being used: PC vs. Mobile devices (phones/tablets). To me, it’s obvious that people are going to learn more through their mobile devices simply because they spend a lot more time on their mobile phones than they do in front of PCs. The question is not whether the instruction can be delivered effectively through mobile devices or not. The real question is whether we can design a platform that will enable mobile learning effectively. This is what we at WizIQ have taken up as a challenge. We believe we have a very solid solution for mobile learning, in the form of our mobile app for iOS and Android, which we are constantly upgrading. You will see us doing a lot of work in this direction.
Does Online Academy support mobile learning? Where can it be downloaded from?
Absolutely, yes! We have designed our Online Academy Builder with mobile in mind. We took over a big industry problem of designing a platform that lets you deliver mobile learning experience without doing anything extra. In fact, we are taking the assumption that soon many learners are not even going to log into PCs to learn. Users will have their own native mobile apps from where they can access and control their online academy and even deliver/attend live classes. One of the best examples in this regard is Facebook whose majority of users now log in only from mobile devices. Although they keep using Facebook on PCs as they want, users don’t have to do anything special to get their content on mobile as everything is mobile-ready.
How can instructors create a self-paced course (with videos) along with assessments?
This is a great question and I was hoping someone asks. While I truly believe that instructor-led learning is better than self-paced learning, I understand that there are certain scenarios where self-paced mode is preferred over instructor-led (time constraints, kind of subject matter, economic reasons etc.). To make self-paced learning effective, there is a great and yet a simple technique: a combination of videos and tests – each video followed by a test that checks the knowledge presented in the video. There is a case study that shows evidence that this works.
How can instructors get training/demo on using Online Academy?
We have a great support staff that is available 24×7 (yes, 24×7!) for one-on-one demo. Please email at email@example.com to schedule yours!
What kind of questions can we create in tests?
Currently, you can only do multiple choice questions. While a lot can be achieved with this (which is why this is the most popular question type worldwide), we understand that you need more kinds of questions. We have been working on this and very soon you will be able to create more types of questions – in fact, more than 50 different types of tests right from your online academy.
Can we create courses in languages other than English?
Yes, you can! As I write this, we are also working on a feature that will enable users to create courses in languages other than English.
What all languages can the Online Academy be created in?
Currently, it’s only in English. But soon we will have more languages, such as Spanish, German, Russian, Dutch, and Arabic.
Can recorded classes be edited?
Yes, the Virtual Classes can be recorded in mp4 formats. Hence, the recorded classes can be edited using video-editing tools like Camtasia Studio.
I do not represent any organization. Can I still have my own online academy?
Yes, you can. For us, anyone is a brand. For example, if you are John Smith, you can choose to brand your academy as johnsmith.wiziq.com. I would also like to mention here that you can also white label your online academy as www.johnsmith.com by owning your domain name.
Will Online Academy support offline classes?
Currently, we don’t support offline classes, but we are coming up with this feature soon! I will tweet about it as soon as this is out! You can follow me on twitter for updates.
Let me know if you have more questions about WizIQ or want to know about my next webinar. I would be more than happy to get in touch with you. You can write to me at firstname.lastname@example.org