Data Visualisation

One thing that drives me nuts about e-learning is using images of charts where images shouldn’t be used. With this, I mean using an image in place of a graph or chart.

We all know just how much a chart, graph, or other well planned visual can help convey complex information, which applies to e-learning. If this is the case, why do we see so many cases of e-learning developers using images in place of charts or graphs?

There are several ways to include data visualisation within online courses that give the learner ‘real’ data that can be explored and interacted with. This provides the system with much more depth and can bring learning to life, especially if the lesson is data-heavy or simulation-based.

Data visualisation tools such as:

Are excellent ways to visualise data in e-learning courses.

So why not include ‘real’ data instead of static assets like images? It comes down to developers simply not knowing how. As mentioned in a previous post, e-learning developers (or many) rely far too much on the most straightforward tools authoring software offers, and these tools are fundamental.

E-Learning Charts and the Power of JavaScript

Although three of the four visualisation tools listed above require basic JavaScript knowledge and JavaScript itself takes time to learn, shouldn’t a dedicated developer know them? Where is the desire to learn, explore, and push boundaries of what e-learning can do?

Putting Tools to Use

This is where I get personally annoyed. Before starting Real Fruit E-Learning, I spent years learning tools that would help me in my job. These tools consisted of Photoshop, Illustrator, After Effects and of course, JavaScript. The latter has an almost endless number of libraries and is a potent tool.   I love putting these tools to work in our projects here at Real fruit. Please take a look at some of our work here.

On a side note, many e-learning authoring tools have a horrendous method of entering JavaScript with pretty much zero user-friendly elements and nigh on impossible to target stage elements through JavaScript. Come on, developers, let’s get JavaScripting!

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