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Web-Based Training & Integrated Help System

Due to the nature of this project, I am unable to provide links or actual examples.

Description

I was responsible for the design and development of web-based training that was integrated within a help system. This series of over 100 training modules was developed for a public school system’s attendance, scheduling and grade book application. The application had been developed in-house. In the time in had been in use (over 7 years), a great deal of documentation had been created (an over 400 page PDF manual).

Users were trained for one week via face-to-face training. However, the application was so large and encompassed so many scenarios that it was expected to take approximately one year before the user understood it fully.  Consequently, there were many errors and problems using the application, and a subsequent overload of the district’s IT support center, especially during critical times of the school year.

The goal was to develop web-based training that would eventually take over the role of the current face-to-face training. The training modules also needed to be integrated within the application itself, using a built-in help system. To view a detailed video explaining how to complete the tasks on any given screen, the user simply pressed the “help” button and the appropriate video was launched.

Because the system was so large, once in the help system, there were navigational tools built in so that the user could view corresponding  videos for tasks directly before and after the task at hand.

 

Users could also access the “table of contents” to see a chronological step-by-step view of the required tasks to operate various parts of the system. The goal was for the “help system” to be usable as online training. Consequently, these help files were accessible via the district’s Sharepoint system, making the web-based training useful for those needing initial training, just-in-time training for various tasks throughout the year, and refreshers or reminders on how to operate certain tasks that were only completed only occasionally.

Because of the sensitive nature of the data within the system, it was impossible to effectively utilize screen capture software like Captivate or Camtasia. Consequently, screenshots were created of the application, and the data was edited and sanitized in Photoshop.

Using Adobe Flash and timeline animation, I recreated the experience a user would have while in the application, complete with all the menus and submenus that a user would interact with while there.

My work on this project included the following: End to end instructional design and elearning development. These responsibilities included coordination and interview of SMEs, documentation gathering and organization, course organization, design and structure, storyboarding, graphic design, script writing, voiceover narration, audio editing, visual asset gathering, assembly of software simulations, Flash timeline animation, and usability testing.

Software / Tools Used: Adobe Flash, SoundBooth, Photoshop, DreamWeaver, HTML & CSS