No Image Available

Rus Slater

Coach and Courses


Read more from Rus Slater

googletag.cmd.push(function() { googletag.display(‘div-gpt-ad-1705321608055-0’); });

e-learning design time


I've been learning to create elearning courses in Articulate and Captivate; I've got pretty competent and confident but I have no benchmark regarding how fast I'm working in comparison to the "norm". Can anyone give any guidance on the amount of time it should take to produce say a 30 minute soft skills type elearning course.


obviously there are massive variations depending on the need for SME input etc, but just some vague idea



Rus Slater

14 Responses

  1. As a guide

    Hi Russ

    Some of my colleagues have just been on an Articulate course and I am guessing at least a 20/1 ratio. Very experienced users would be able to reduce this I'm sure.

    On the bright side, if you wanted to buy bespoke e learning content it would cost upwards of £10k to  £25k+ per hour




  2. thanks Steve…

    …as an independent designer that is really useful info. I'm looking to try to sell myself to end user organisations and consultancies on the basis of a remote design capacity so knowing these sorts of figures from a client perspective is very handy.




    PS wanna commission some e-learning? 🙂

  3. Thanks but…

    Thanks but we have an army of people doing it in house now…not a big fan of computer based courses and still prefer books to Kindles.

    I'm stuck in the 1950's and prefer "proper" training. 

  4. Soft Skills

    30 minute soft skills type elearning 

    Call it Essential Skills and you can get an extra 20% 

  5. Bryan Chapman’s Research

    Bryan Chapman did an analysis of this and the following were his findings:

    34:1 — Instructor-Led Training (ILT), including design, lesson plans, handouts, PowerPoint slides, etc. (Chapman, 2007).

    33:1 — PowerPoint to E-Learning Conversion (Chapman, 2006a, p20).

    220:1 — Standard e-learning, which includes presentation, audio, some video, test questions, and 20% interactivity (Chapman, 2006a, p20)

    345:1 — 3rd party courseware. Time it takes for online learning publishers to design, create, test and package 3rd party courseware (Private study by Bryan Chapman

    750:1 — Simulations from scratch. Creating highly interactive content (Chapman, 2006b)


  6. How much?

    34:1 — Instructor-Led Training (ILT), including design, lesson plans, handouts, PowerPoint slides, etc. (Chapman, 2007).

    Without going into too much who, what where and how if I worked on this basis a 3 day course would cost just short of £80000 to produce. And that would be without anyone else helping me.

    Having said that a 2 day classroom based course I am producing at the moment has involved about 15 people for at least 5 months and is many times more than 34:1

    But it all depends on the course. There's no way this would be done for a one off, the course in question will be delivered over 200 times. 

    Ratios are a bit like the how long is a piece of string…far too many factors can affect the timescale.

    I've attended some courses where I would question is they even used 1:1

  7. change of slant

    looking at Brian Chapman's findings it calls into question the concept of a training provider doing instructor led training sessions without being paid for the design time, just delivery!

  8. excellent!

    Garry Thanks for posting the Brian Chapman comment and Steve thanks for adding the link to his material and the cutting comment.

    I found his research results very interesting and, when you look at what he is including in the totals, quite believable.

    I don't think his ppt slides were meant to be used as a visual aid in a training event but read on screen, almost like a text book of infographics; as such I found them illuminating.


  9. Illuminating

    Morning Russ

    Three "illuminating" thoughts today

    1) If a professional consulting company offered me a service for anything ending in $***95 I would be a little worried

    2) Agreed the PPT wasn't for a personal presentation but why not use Infographics if your main area of expertise is presenting information, training and learning? 

    3) The most illuminating thing you will ever do is have a meeting with an e learning designer and be amazed when you get to the price part. No research required, just lick your finger, stick it in the air and see which way the wind is blowing. 

  10. Nor’ Nor’ East, 5 Knots, Gusting. That’ll be about £6995 please!


No Image Available
Rus Slater


Read more from Rus Slater

Get the latest from TrainingZone.

Elevate your L&D expertise by subscribing to TrainingZone’s newsletter! Get curated insights, premium reports, and event updates from industry leaders.

Thank you!