It is said that a picture is worth a thousand words. Images can greatly enhance the learning experience of your online course. However, as with all powerful tools, knowing when and how to use them is an important skill every course designer must have.
Image usage tips
Before downloading or taking an image, ask yourself these five questions:
Does the image reinforce your message?
We’ve all seen eLearning that features endless stock photos of people in business environments, sitting at desks but not actually doing anything related to the job your learners are training for. Don’t fall into that trap! Take the time to create your own images if your budget allows, or really search through stock photo sites to find the best image.
Does it invoke interest or excitement?
Remember, the best visuals are those that evoke an emotional response. Choose an image that will make your learners laugh, or something that gets them excited. People are naturally drawn to photos that follow basic design principles, such as the Rule of Thirds or Fibonacci Sequence concepts discussed earlier.
Does it attract your learner’s attention?
Your image should be more than just generic clipart. It needs to stand out and grab your learner’s eye. Use bright colors and detailed images to draw your learner in.
Does it convey the right message to learners?
Consider the context and location where your course will be used. You want to select images that will make sense to your learners and convey the correct impression. We’ve all laughed at the viral photos of mistranslated signs and logos—don’t let that happen to your eLearning course!
Is the style consistent with other graphics used in the course?
To keep your course looking neat and professional, don’t mix and match clipart and photos. Clipart photos are tempting because they generally have a small file size, but they also don’t resonate as much as real photos do. If you can’t find photos that fit your eLearning, high quality vector images and silhouettes are the best alternatives.