How to Become an eLearning Developer: Step-By-Step Guide

The eLearning world is growing fast! Lots of organizations want to invest more money in digital learning solutions. This means more jobs and opportunities for everyone. So, if you’re thinking of switching careers to eLearning, you’re on the right track.

But where do you begin? It might seem tricky at first, especially if eLearning is new to you. Here’s some good news: you don’t need tons of previous experience to start. Whether you’ve been a teacher, a trainer, or any kind of learning professional, there’s room for you in this industry. In this blog, we will discuss what an eLearning developer is and how to become an eLearning developer.

An eLearning developer plays a crucial role in the world of online learning. They’re like the architects of online courses, tutorials, and learning modules. Their job? To make sure that learning isn’t just effective but also easy to understand and interesting. How do they do it? By using all sorts of eLearning authoring tools to make engaging and interactive content. If you want to be in this field, then you must know how to utilize the tool properly to make the program according to your client’s requirements.

These tech-savvy creators work with curriculum developers, instructional designers, Subject Matter Expets (SMEs) and other educational professionals. 

Imagine getting an outline for an online course. Then developer dives into a toolbox of authoring tools, mixing code, designing graphics and animations, writing scripts for interactive activities, and putting together multimedia elements like slideshows and videos. They make sure everything works well on different platforms and devices. Sounds easy? But it needs the right strategy and creative mind.

Once they build the course, it goes onto a learning management system (LMS), ready for learners to explore. The eLearning developer’s job doesn’t end there. They make sure the final product meets all requirements and is a hit with learners of all styles. However, this means checking for any errors or technical issues. As online education keeps growing, so does the need for these creative pros. It’s a field full of opportunity, and to be successful you just need a passion for learning and development.

What Skills Do You Need to Become an eLearning Developer?

Becoming an eLearning developer means you need various skills. First, it would be good, if you are good at programming language like HTML, CSS, JavaScript, and PHP, , although it’s not necessary. You’ll use these to create dynamic content that learners can access anytime. 

It’s also important to be familiar with authoring tools like Adobe Captivate, Articulate Storyline, Articulate Rise and Elucidat. These tools help you make engaging and interactive eLearning stuff. But you should start with the easy features. Once you get that, then you can play around with more advanced features.

Understanding instructional design principles is super important. This helps align your content with the learner’s goals and objectives. Want to make your courses interesting? Add some multimedia elements like video, audio, and simulations.

You’ve got to be a bit of a detective, too, with great analytical and problem-solving skills. Being creative in delivering content and working well both independently and in a team is crucial. Plus, good communication and interpersonal skills are a must – you’ll be collaborating with lots of people.

To be successful, you have to keep patience because this field keeps changing, and you’ve got to be ready to experiment and adapt. On top of that, having strong project management skills is a big plus. You’ll often juggle multiple projects, meet deadlines, collaborate with teams, and delegate tasks.

So, if you’ve got these qualities and are ready to put in the effort, you’re on your way to becoming a fantastic eLearning developer.

What Does an eLearning Developer Do?

Being an E-learning Developer means you get to shape how people learn online. It’s a mix of tech, creativity, and teaching! Your main job? Develop e-learning. This could mean creating everything from mobile-friendly lessons (M-learning) to quick micro-learning videos and even learning podcasts.

You start by understanding instructional design. Sometimes, you’re given an outline or storyboard. Other times, you’ve to arrange the outline yourself, although you can hire experts for that part. Then comes the creative part: using tools like Adobe Captivate, Articulate Rise and Elucidat. These tools help you build courses that aren’t just informative but also super engaging.

As a new eLearning developer, learning video and audio editing can be a big help. It saves money for your company and makes you stand out in your job. Because you have to make your projects engaging with Audio/Video Editing. Think video clips or audio snippets, maybe using software like Audacity, Adobe Audition, or Camtasia. And don’t forget Graphic Design. You’ll be using Photoshop, Illustrator, or even PowerPoint to make visuals that look best.

To be a successful eLearning developer, it’s important to understand the learning and training needs of the organization you’re working for. This means looking closely at what the employees already know and what they need to learn to meet the company’s goals. Once you know these gaps, you will be able to help the organization by creating effective training programs. You also have to work with the Subject Matter Expert. Collaboration with (SMEs) is very important if you want to shine in this field. Trust me (SMEs) can be a big help.

In many ways, you’re also a Project Manager. You’ll set up interviews, manage timelines, coordinate with stakeholders, etc. In some cases, you also have to make sure your courses work well on a Learning Management System (LMS).

how to become an elearning developer

How to Become an eLearning Developer

Now, you must want to know how to become an eLearning Developer. Don’t worry, I am here to help. Below I will share the step-by-step guide that can make your journey easy towards becoming an eLearning developer. 

Step One: Get the Right Education

Starting a career in eLearning development begins with getting the right education. It’s best to study fields like instructional design, educational technology, etc. Look for courses or programs that teach programming, how to use eLearning tools, and how to design courses.

The great part is you can learn all these online. Many good online courses and certificates let you learn without leaving your home or job. This way, you don’t need to spend a lot of money or time on a four-year degree to start making eLearning courses.

Step Two: Ensure to Focus on Building Your Skills

Ready to be an eLearning developer? Step two is all about getting better at the skills you need. This job needs you to make all kinds of eLearning stuff, like digital training content. It’s probably one of the most skill-packed jobs in the learning world.

Step Three: Build an eLearning Portfolio

Now, as an eLearning developer, show what you can do by making an eLearning portfolio. A cool portfolio beats a fancy degree or lots of years of experience. Employers look for real proof of your skills. Start by checking out other eLearning portfolio examples for ideas.

Decide what kind of portfolio you want and the skills you want to show. Then, create your sample projects. It’s not just what you choose to make but how you make it. Use everything you’ve learned about instructional design, development, and visual design skills in your projects.

When you have some great samples, get your web domain. Choose a website-building tool to put your portfolio together. Don’t worry if you’re new to this. There are lots of easy-to-use, low-cost, or even free options to help you start.

Step Four: Build Your Online Presence

Got your eLearning portfolio? Great! Now, for an eLearning developer, it’s time to build your online presence. This means you start showing yourself off as an eLearning expert. A top spot to begin is your LinkedIn profile. It’s where hiring managers and recruiters look for talents like you. Not on Facebook or Twitter, but on LinkedIn.

If you don’t have a LinkedIn profile, make one. It’s totally free and easy. On LinkedIn, put a nice photo of yourself and a banner image that shows who you are. Write a catchy headline and a summary. Use keywords that match the kind of jobs you want.

Then, start connecting. Network with people already in this field. The more you show yourself as an eLearning pro online, the more people will see you as one.

Step Five: Start Looking and applying for Jobs

how to become an elearning developer

You’re an eLearning developer now! Time to hit the ground running with applying for jobs. Even if you’re still working on your skills or portfolio, send out applications. However, this is good for getting interview practice.

When job hunting, don’t just stick to popular job boards. Check out industry-specific websites. They often have job postings that tell you a lot about what the job really involves. Many times, these are put up by the hiring manager. It’s a great chance to network with these people and start building relationships. This networking can be a big help when you begin interviewing.

Final Thoughts

Choosing to be an eLearning developer is a really rewarding career choice. It’s all about having the right education and training. Then, you develop your skills and start shining in this field. 

If you feel ready to change lives, think about being an eLearning developer. Just follow the above mentioned steps and tips in this guide. They’ll lead you down the right path to your new career.


What skills are needed for an eLearning developer?

An eLearning developer should be familiar with adult learning theory and instructional design principles, and have skills in storyboarding and scripting.

How do you become an eLearning specialist?

To become an eLearning specialist, get a bachelor’s degree in multimedia design, instructional design, or programming and consider getting certified in relevant software tools like Adobe Connect.

How much do eLearning developers make in the US?

In the US, eLearning developers typically earn around $68,000 to $89,000 per year, depending on experience and location.

What is an e-learning consultant?

An eLearning consultant develops strategies and programs for eLearning, focusing on what content learners need and how to use technology for eLearning effectively.

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