A Unique Approach to
Online Curriculum Development
The Fast Track
How To Put Your Online Curriculum Development on the Fast Track
Speaker: Damien Jordan, Educator and Entrepreneur
Educators | Entrepreneurs | Everyone Else
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Can This Help You?
The Purpose of this Website
The purpose of this website is to provide training and resources that facilitate online curriculum development—and not just for educators but for entrepreneurs as well. But the first thing which needs to be established is a basic understanding of what actually characterizes a good curriculum.
When educators put together a curriculum, the initial focus is often on the content which is to be covered in the course. Yet there is another important factor, which is often overlooked. This factor which often escapes the curriculum developer's attention is the element of speed.
That's right. Speed.
The Etymology of the Word Curriculum
The etymology of the word curriculum reveals that the word is really about charting a course like a race track and running that course as fast as possible. This may come as a surprise, but according to the Oxford English Dictionary, the word curriculum comes from the Latin word for "a race" or "the course of a race." In fact, the noun is actually derived from the verb currere, which means to run or to proceed. This is evident in other languages like Spanish, in which the verb for run is correr, and in French, in which the verb for run is courir. It is interesting to note that the pronunciation is similar to the English word "career" and that whenever we speak of a career, it is typically associated with a path (i.e., a career path). This, of course, circles back around to the origins of the word curriculum—"the course of a race."
Therefore, a good curriculum is by definition a fast track.
So before any discussion of selecting and gathering the content of a training program, the very first consideration is given to the pace and the duration of the program. This awareness is the very first step to putting your online curriculum development on the fast track. The second step is to make sure that you are using a delivery system that is streamlined for speed and ease.
This makes sense, right? Of course.
The Question Everyone Asks:
"How long is this going to take me?"
Before people choose a course or career path, what is the first thing they want to know?
"How long is this going to take me?"
When a person considers, for example, a career in medicine—whether it be as doctor, a nurse, a radiologist, a pharmacist or a pharmacy technician and the list goes on, of course—the first factor which comes to mind is often the duration of training associated with that career path. Once again, the question is, "How long is this going to take me?"
Whether the course is 10 years, 10 months, 10 weeks, 10 days, 10 hours or 10 minutes, the first thing that typically comes to mind is the time factor. Well, this is consistent with the essence of the word curriculum. As an online curriculum developer, you will have at least two major reasons to keep the time factor in mind. First, you will want to know how long it will take you to develop the courses or modules within your curriculum. Second, you should also put yourself in the shoes of your prospective customers (i.e., your students), because they are asking themselves how long it is going to take them to get through the courses or modules which comprise your curriculum.
This is so important to understand as you are developing your online curriculum, because it cannot be emphasized enough. The time is even more important than the money, because people will pay money to get their time back. Phrasing this another way, people are willing to pay even more if you can help them to reach their goals sooner than later. Just as your time is important to you, their time is important to them.
Instructors and curriculum developers often overlook this, but it is expensive to ignore, because you will lose business if you do not put your online curriculum on the fast track. The simple fact is that people appreciate and reward people who help them to achieve their goals quickly or at least ahead of schedule. This is equally true when it comes to online curriculum development.
The online curriculum developer is especially valuable to entrepreneurs who have products and services which they need to bring to the marketplace at all points of the process from R&D to retail sales.
Education Can Be A Powerful Form of Marketing
The online curriculum developer is especially valuable to entrepreneurs who have products and services which they need to bring to the marketplace, because education can be a powerful form of marketing. Think about that for a moment—education as a form of marketing. An educational presentation is one of the most powerful forms of marketing that there is.
And what, essentially, is marketing?
Marketing has been defined as everything you do to promote your business.
The reason why is that—depending on the quality, of course—education has the ability to elevate any discussion from cost-level thinking to vision-level thinking. When an inventor appears in a board room of potential investors, an educational presentation which elevates the room so that everyone is able to see the profit potential and societal benefits of investing in an idea has an enormous advantage over the inventor whose presentation is limited to production costs and product features.
Education, once again, is a powerful form of marketing.
Online Curriculum Development:
A Marketing Strategy for Your Business
An online curriculum can be a vital part of your marketing strategy. And if you are an online curriculum developer, the value of the skill set you bring to the marketplace will be quite evident to business owners and entrepreneurs who appreciate the positive impact that an educational component could potentially have on the price points of their products or services.