November 3, 2022
 —  
Education

Build Your Next Online Course

Jared McKinney
Head of Growth

You have a hot-selling topic. And already, your course idea is percolating with possibilities.

Meanwhile, your audience is clamoring for your course. The students want to know everything about the course, what they will learn, and how it will help them improve their lives. Expectations are high, and you want to ensure you deliver a fantastic course that helps your students reach their goals. But where do you start? How do you ensure that you don’t leave anything out and deliver a course that blows your students away?

Read on to learn how to create a course outline that will make your course creation process smoother and your course more successful.

Why Are Outlines the Key to Your Success?

With about a million things on our to-do list, it’s easy to feel uncertain about what to do and when to do it. This is especially true when you’re embarking on something new, like creating an online course.

An outline is essential for course creation because it will serve as your road map. It is in the process of creating an outline that you deploy idea generation and structural organization of the course content—essential ingredients for a course that flows well and is easy to follow.

A course outline also allows you to see the big picture and get a bird’s eye view of what you need to include. And it can be quite helpful when you start creating your course and adding more pieces to the puzzle.

Plus, if you are hoping to create an asynchronous course on a platform like Volley, an outline will help set you up for success and make building your space a quick and easy process.

After all, the difference between a great course and an okay course is often in the details. A course outline helps you make sure you don’t leave anything out.

And as you become clearer on the topics and subtopics you want to include, your course will start to come together and take shape. That way, your students will know exactly what they will get when they sign up for your course.

Building the Outline

Your students will expect a life-changing experience after interacting with the knowledge and insight you’re going to drop on them. So how do you guarantee that your course outline lives up to the hype?

You will need to start with a course title that accurately reflects the content of your course. Then, you want to briefly describe what the course is about and what students will learn.

The course title and description are important because they set the tone for the rest of the course outline. They help students understand what they can expect from the course and whether it’s a good fit for them.

Other specific steps you should take are:

#1. Determine the structure and content of your course

Making a list that shows a step-by-step process that your course will take is a great way to organize course content and ensure students follow along easily.

It also allows you to determine what topics you need to include and in what order they should be presented. You might need to brainstorm first with a mind-mapping tool, after which you can convert your ideas into a course outline template.

You can structure your course outline to reflect different sections in the course outline template, such as:

  • Introduction

The introduction is where you will give your students a high-level overview of the course. The orientation, vocabulary, learning objectives, and course expectations should be included here.

You want to give students a clear understanding of what they will be learning and how it will benefit them. This is also a good place to set the tone for the course so your students know what kind of experience they can expect.

  • Modules, lessons, and topics

Consider these as the building blocks of your course. You can further break down each module into smaller lessons and topics.

Modules and topics will allow you to go into more depth on each topic and ensure your course is comprehensive. Endeavor to break down bigger and more complex concepts into manageable subtopics that your students can easily digest.

  • Resources and further study materials

Include any supplementary materials that will help students further their understanding of the course concepts. You might include books, blog posts, articles, templates, worksheets, and more here.

Many students appreciate it when course creators include a list of resources they can use to supplement the course. This set of students can be reassured when you have a list of resources in your course outline.

Sample of a Model Course Outline Template

I. Introduction

  • Orientation
  • Vocabulary
  • Learning objectives
  • Course expectations

II. Modules, lessons, and topics

Module 1: Lesson 1

  • Topic 1
  • Topic 2

Module 1: Lesson 2

  • Topic 1
  • Topic 2

III. Resources for further studies

  • Books
  • Blog posts
  • Articles
  • Templates
  • Worksheets

#2. Making Your Course Outline Work for You

After you have all the pieces in place, it’s time to start putting your course outline to work.

Here are a few ways you can make your course outline template work for you:

  • Course delivery

Course delivery is the logistics of how you will deliver the course to your students. Usually, you can create and host your course through an online course using a tool like Volley’s Grow platform, which makes it easy to host and deliver your course content as video content.

  • Use your course outline on your landing  page

Your course outline is the perfect tool to use on your course sales page.

You can use your course outline template as a marketing tool to drive course sales. You can include the course title, description, and objectives in your course landing page and use it as course teaser content on social media.

  • Create social media posts around your course outline

Use your course outline to create social media posts that will help you market your course. You can use the course description, objectives, or individual lesson topics to create engaging social media content to build anticipation and drive people to sign up for the course.

Choose the Best Course Delivery Platform

To get the most out of your course, you need to choose a course delivery platform that offers features that fit both your needs and those of your students.

Volley is an asynchronous video messaging and course delivery platform that makes it easy to create and sell beautiful online courses. It has everything you need to launch and market your course successfully. Without needing to be tied to your camera, calendar, or desk!

With Volley, you can:

  • Create a course space
  • Record and save asynchronous video messages and courses
  • Share your screen, documents, texts, and images
  • Connect with your students via video messaging
  • Get detailed course analytics
  • And much more!

Download Volley today to put your course outline to good use and get started on creating your dream course!

Jared McKinney

More growth than hack.

About the Author

As a marketer, I like doing old things in new ways—copywriting, SEO, email—to achieve outsized results on modest budgets. I've scaled marketing programs at 8,9 and 10-figure tech companies and managed teams from inception to IPO.

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