How courses are structured
Glossary and 'how to' libraries
The toolkit assumes that your courses have a simple hierarchical
structure, consisting of one or more modules each containing one or more sections or
Modules are the primary subdivision of the course material. All available modules are
listed in the 'sidebar' on the left of the window. As an example, the toolkit itself has
three modules - 'using the toolkit', 'sample pages' and 'sample test'.
It makes sense to limit the number of modules
to what can fit sensibly in the sidebar, without the need for scrolling - that's a maximum
of around 18 modules if your browser window is 800x600 pixels.
As a guideline, a module would contain enough
material for a single session - say 20 minutes to an hour of learning.
Note that modules are not course-specific.
You can use the same modules in as many courses as you wish.
Modules can be divided into sections or what the toolkit calls 'learning points'. For
example, this module has six learning points, accessed from the module menu. Why not click
on the 'up one level' button above and see for yourself?
Learning points are, in turn, made up of one
or more pages - each a separate HTML file. To complete a learning point, a user moves
sequentially through the pages, using the previous and next page buttons, until they reach
the end, when they are returned to the module menu.
A normal presentational page can contain any mix of text, graphics and animations.
The templates constrain the width of these pages to 600 pixels, for two reasons:
- to ensure the pages can be viewed at
- as a way of restricting the width of lines of text and therefore
You can format these pages in
columns to create a wide range of layouts, depending on the images and text
that you need to display.
The toolkit makes available seven different question templates:
- multiple answer
- text or number input
- image map
- ordering and matching
- drag and drop
All questions are displayed as individual
pages, with feedback appearing beneath the question. This
allows the user to make multiple selections and receive customised feedback on each
selection, without annoying page refreshes. To see for yourself, try the sample questions.
Tests are a special form of module containing an introduction page, a series of question
pages, a score page and (for users that pass the test) a certificate. Tests will normally
be used to assess mastery of the course material, but can be used to help a user assess
their knowledge of the subject matter before starting the course.
Glossary and 'how to' libraries
The toolkit allows for two libraries of additional pages to be maintained, for access
anywhere within a course:
- the glossary, containing definitions or explanations of key
- 'how tos' explaining how something is done
Again there are examples in the sample pages.
The glossary and 'how to' libraries are not
course-specific. In other words, you can, if you wish, make use of the same libraries
across many courses.
Users can access the libraries from
hyperlinks within any of the course pages or by clicking on the glossary button in the
You can provide a full set of instructions for your course on the information page. This
is accessed from the information button on the sidebar.
Consulting Ltd, 1999