[E-Learning in Healthcare] Monthly Discussion - March 2012

Mar 26, 2012

Welcome to the monthly E-Learning in Healthcare discussion! 

There was a lot of great discussion from last month's thread on finding images for healthcare courses.  It was also great meeting so many of you via the forum and for the excellent participation!

THIS MONTH’S TOPIC: Background Designs and Templates…

There was an excellent post by David Anderson that generated discussion about cover screens for e-learning courses and how they might influence our learners' perceived value of the course.

Do you create cover screens and/or custom designed templates for each course?  If so, are you able and/or willing to share an example?  If you don’t use custom templates, do you use purchased templates, MS Office templates, or other?

We would love to hear from you!

If you have any ideas for future monthly discussion topics please send a private message to us (Doug Mattson & Nita Venter) .


11 Replies
Phil Mayor

We use custon skins for our courses when possible, luckily we can produce them easliy in house so they have no real cost associated with them.

The latest course we have developed for the NHS in the UK


Login student

password UCtest

We host it on our moodle site here http://moodle.mylearningspace.me.uk/moodle/

but as you can see have themed the site to match the brand we created.  We didn't really use cover screens but wanted to give a brand to all of the course

Sammy Hwang

Wow. Phil,

Your Moodle web site and courses design look pretty neat.

Can I ask some questions to you?

How did you come up with show and hide menu arrow, the part that I penned as "cool!"?

Did you create it with a jquery and insert the page? or we can do it within Moodle?

Secondly, how did you create the customized 'not completed icon', the part that I penned as "cool2!"?

That is so cool...


Doug Mattson

Great info Phil and Sami.  Thanks for sharing!

I like the custom skins.

I haven't developed or used a custom skin yet, but I do develop a custom template to go with most of the courses I build.  I believe the workforce in general is suffering from "regulatory fatigue."   With that in mind, I try to make an impact with the visual design - especially with the first glance.

Here's an example of a cover page I designed for a Hazardous Chemicals course. 

In a pinch I have used templates from online resources, such as: PoweredTemplates

Does anyone else create their own templates or use pre-designed templates from an online resource?




Thanks for sharing the test login Phil - really interesting to see.  Sami, the "checklist" comes with Moodle 2.  We are upgrading this summer and so will get that new functionality  

I haven't created a presenter skin but we do make custom templates for some projects or at the very least use a corporate colour palette for Presenter.  I would usually create a cover page as sometimes there is intro audio and you can never tell what context the user will view the course (online, in a meeting, presentation etc) so it sets the scene. 

Our main problem is a lack of graphics, so we are always on the look out for (free) health related media we can use.  With that in mind some of our courses/cover pages have a minimalist theme!!!  Attached are two ideas for my current project's cover page:


Meg Bertapelle

cool examples guys!

I typically create a theme based on either our corporate standards, or something fitting for the topic, but we don't have a "standard" skin or cover or theme that we're required to use...  Some examples of things I've created (mostly in Captivate, but some PPT and Adobe Presenter) sometimes with help from the rest of my team:


this one is actually sort of "un-branded" for residency programs:


I usually start with some existing element - either a template, a graphic, or an image - and then customize the design based on the content & how we're going to present it.

Michael Sutcliffe

Phil, I couldn't get your first link to work. It gave me an error message:

You are trying to use an invalid course ID: ({$a})

The second link required me to create an account.

I'm not familiar with the term "cover page", but I think you guys are talking about a design, theme or skin for your eLearning. I tend to follow Tom Kuhlman's lead and make my own using PowerPoint and background images. I've added his freebies to my catalog of assets, and I also create my own according to the overall theme and purpose of the lesson.

For example, I had to do a lesson for our Labor & Delivery department, so I found a stock photo of a nursery. Then I used PowerPoint's image editing tools to separate out the elements (toy, crib, table). Then I made an interactive menu on the title slide (the "cover page"?), where users clicked on each element to get to a particular section of the course. I added a conventional navigation on the right, for people who are more linear.

Nita  Venter

If you use Photoshop (CS4) you can create a great outline effect by:

  • Placing the image into the Photoshop canvas
  • Press CRTL + J to copy the image.
  • Press Shift + U
  • Press CRTL + J
  • Select Color Dodge
  • Select Filter > Blur> Gausian Blur
  • Adjust radius to desired intensity – can also use burn and Dodge tool to adjust further.

Before Adjustments:

I am happy to send you the PSD file (and original image) as well if you would like to.

Take care


This discussion is closed. You can start a new discussion or contact Articulate Support.