Getting started

Hi all,


Newbie here!

I wanted to ask if you could recommend any particular qualifications or courses to get started as an Instructional Designer and Content Developer?

I am currently working as a L&D consultant and would like to make the transition into tech based learning largely because of the rise of blended learning.


I have completed a basic course on Adobe Captivate and currently compile story boards, course design requests and basic structuring of projects on Captivate, as well as use Animation tools such as Animoto, Animaker and Powtoons. I would like to make my content more interactive and engaging and would like some level of formal qualification or industry recognised credentials to move into this sector as a career option.


So, is there any advice you could offer? How did you get into your roles? Any suggestions or recommendations?


Thanks and I look forward to hearing your thoughts...



11 Replies
Benjamin Wilker

Welcome to the community!  I am glad you are getting excited about transitioning in to the eLearning world.

I have a few recommendations that will make your life a lot easier in changing over.  First is try not to limit yourself when it comes to creativity.  When it comes to eLearning for End-Users (Learners) the more interactive and fun you can make it, the more successful your courses will be.  Second take advantage of everything you can find here in the community.  There are lots of FREE resources at your fingertips with more that comes out daily.

My final recommendation would be, if possible, take one of the Articulate courses provided by Yukon Learning.  You can find class locations and times here:  Do not be intimidated by the Advanced course either, you will learn all the skills you need in the first two days to make it through the Advanced Course.  This will really give you a good leg-up and help teach you some best practices and small tips and tricks to make creating courses a breeze.

Hope this was helpful, and welcome again!

Melissa Jordan

Hello and welcome! I personally got into my role creating eLearning when my company acquired a smaller company that had an eLearning team. Before that, we relied on documentation and in-person training, and I was working as a technical writer.

My advice would be to jump in and try it! I had no training or experience, but I'm creative and love to take apart content and reassemble it into something engaging and "pretty." So, if you're a creative type, I'm sure you'll do well.

The Heroes Community is my number one go-to for tips and tricks and creative inspirtation. Everyone here is so helpful and knowledgeable, so I'd make use of the community.

One of my coworkers attended some training provided by Yukon and had a great experience, so you might find some helpful classes there. I've attended a couple of trainings from Talent Development and had good experiences.

I've also attended a story-based design workshop from Ray Jimenez at Vignettes Learning. He was a great trainer and I really enjoyed the class and got a lot out of his instruction and just brainstorming and chatting with peers there.

Good luck and welcome to the community!

Ashley Chiasson

I think you're starting in one of the best places to be honest. This community has such a wealth of knowledge, and the folks at Articulate have created a ton of helpful articles over the years. Here's a great article to start with:

Additionally, the Instructional Design sub-reddit is a great resource for information:

Brett Rockwood

Being a member of this community is a great place to start. There aren't any "credentials" per se but there are lots of great ideas, examples and people willing to help. has some nice tutorials for Storyline that you might look into. I would suggest you learn a little about graphic and type design. One book I always recommend to new instructional designers is "The Non-Designers Design Book" by Robin Williams. It is full of easy to understand and apply examples and principles that will go a long way to making your designs more cohesive and effective.

blair parkin

As others have said being an active member on Heroes is a great place to start. There are so many amazing examples shared on here, download them, "look under the hood" and try to recreate them. The only other thing I would say is don't add interactivity just for the sake of making it interactive. Make sure it fits in with your content and the purpose of the course.

FSMTB Continuing Education

Welcome! I would like to second the Instructional Design subreddit. Also, read as many blogs and articles as you can. I carve out time in my day to read eLearning blogs and articles just to stay current.

In addition, ALISON, an online MOOC, has a fantastic course on eLearning Theory and Practice:

It's a free course, although when you're finished you can pay $25 for a certificate to hang on your cubical wall... like I did... Hey, I earned it!

Jackie Van Nice

Hi Dharmesh! Welcome indeed. :) 

You've got loads of good advice here that should help quite a bit.

I'll add that a great way to learn and practice is to find e-learning examples that you wish you'd created - then figure out why they work and how you can can create similarly outstanding pieces.

(And don't forget to have fun with it!