The Content Review: Questions to Ask

In my last blog post, I noted some questions you might want to ask about how to structure your reviews. I generally structure my reviews into four types.

  • Content Review
  • Instructional Design Review
  • Editorial Review
  • Functionality/Technical Review

While the different reviews can be combined, I’ve found that separating them helps the reviewer focus on the right things.  In this post, we’ll look at the content review.

You can have the flashiest graphics and the coolest interactions in the world, but if you content is bad your course will flop.  Even if you are editing an existing course or creating a course from existing documents, you’ll want to do a thorough review–a simple edit could inadvertently change the meaning of something.  That’s why you’ll want to have your content checked for accuracy EARLY in the process.  We complete this review during storyboard phase.

You’ll want to identify what you want your reviewers (including your subject-matter experts) to look for in this review.  Some reviewers might get caught up in grammar or typographical issues instead of focusing on the content itself.  You can increase the chances of getting the kind of feedback you want if you identify what your reviewers should focus on.

Here are some questions we ask during the content review.

  • Are the objectives valid?
  • If someone masters all stated objectives, will they have all the information they need to know?
  • Is all of the information accurate, thorough, and current?
  • Are there any terms or concepts used that the target audience may not already understand?
  • Is there anything critical to mastering the objectives that has not been covered?
  • Is there any information included in the course that the target audience doesn’t really need to know?
  • Are the explanations of the content clear and accurate?
  • Are the diagrams, captions, and graphics accurate?
  • Are all industry-specific terms spelled properly?
  • Do industry-specific or difficult-to-pronounce terms have a pronunciation guide for the voice talent if the course will have audio recorded?
  • Do the activities reinforce the most critical information?
  • Do the questions test the most critical information?
  • Would someone be prepared to do his or her job after completing this course?
  • Is there any content missing from the course?

We are currently putting together a checklist for our reviewers.  Do you have any questions you ask during your content review that we may have missed?

Desiree Pinder
Artisan E-Learning

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