Admin > Course > Add New Course
This article will go over the most common settings used when setting up a course for the first time. More advanced settings like emails, layout customisation, certificates and more will be covered in other articles.
This article covers what the best practice and use of course name, descriptions and alias' are, what the difference between the course types are and what the visibility and enrolment settings do.
Name, Description and Alias
One of the most important things to consider when making a course is the name of your course. The key to a good course name is to make it is as short and concise as possible, containing only the most revelant keywords so that it's meaning is clear and easy to search without being convoluted.
The course description is where you get to elaborate on the course title or sum up what the course is about.
This area generally consists of one or two short sentences (although there is no limit on how much you can write), and here you can tell users what the course is for, aims to discuss, and what they will have learned by the time they have completed it.
An alias is the unique id that Curatr uses to reference the course. If you don't choose one yourself, Curatr will automatically generate one based on the name of the course you chose.
Note: An alias must be 100% unique. The syntax for an alias is for there to be no spaces and words to be seperated by hyphens (dashes.)
Start and Close Date
When creating a course, the default value for the start date is the current date, at 12:00am. This ensures that the course will never be in a state where it is not available when it is created.
However, if you have a specific date in mind when you want the course to be available and don't want users you've enroled to be able to begin the course yet, clicking on the Start Date field will open up a menu (shown below) that will enable you to select a date (on the left) and a time (on the right.)
Note: You can only set the close date of a course once the course has been created, from within the course display options in Course > Your Course > Settings
When a course is created, the close date is set to blank by default, meaning that your course will never close and will always be available.
If you want the course to be open-ended then you can leave this blank, however, if you want the course to have a set end date, you can choose a date and time to close it much in the same way setting a start date is handled by clicking on the Close Date field and selecting a date and time as shown above.
Note: All times are calculated in UTC (Universal Coordinated Time) in Curatr to ensure uniformity, so you will need to calculate how this relates to your local timezone if you want it to open at the correct time where you are based.
Curatr offers four different course types to choose from when setting up your course:
Branching - Linear - Non-Linear - Classic
These offer a variety of different approaches to how your course will operate with users, with branching being our recommended game type because of its versatility, incorporating elements of linear and non linear into one game type.
The Linear game type offers a traditional structure to course progression. Users in a Linear course will not be able to progress to the next level without completing the current level they are in.
This means that you can set up content to lead into one another, and guide the users learning process very strictly so that they know how to complete a level from what they learnt in the preceding levels leading up to it.
Non-linear, on the other hand, offers the complete opposite experience to the Linear game type. Users in a non-linear course can pick and choose when they want to complete a certain level, with all levels inside the course being open to them at all times and it is up to the user to choose the order in which they complete them.
This type of course could be utilised when showing users a collection of skills/information that aren't directly connected, but are related under a shared topic or field.
A Branching course, however, is considered the bread and butter of the Curatr game types. It offers the widest variety of options when it comes to structuring a course. Unlike the Linear and Non-Linear game types, Branching offers an extra feature called "Level Groups" which, as the name suggests, allows you to group levels up into contained blocks.
This allows you to blend aspects from Linear and Non-Linear game types together to give a more complex course structure. For example, users might be required to complete all levels in the first level group before they can move onto the next group, which then might only require them to complete one level before continuing.
As the name suggests, Classic is our original game type that we used in the early days of Curatr. With many improvements being made to the Curatr experience in our newer game types, Classic has become a deprecated feature but we have kept it available at customer request.
Tip: Although we recommend the default layout, if you want to use the level layout for Classic you can find the option in Admin > Courses > Your Course > Settings > Levels.
Your courses visibility setting decides whether your course can be seen by all users (including those who aren't enroled on the course) if Public, or only users who are enroled on the course if set to Secret, when on your Curatr home page.
Course visibility can be utilised in many different scenarios and can be used in conjunction with Public Registration where users can sign up to your Curatr and see what type of courses your organisation is offering.
To find out about how public registration works, visit this article.
In a courses display settings, you are given some options to customise how your enrolment behaves with that course:
- Enrolment Length
- Allow Self Enrolment
- Allow Users to Unenroll From Course
When editing your enrolment length, calculated in weeks, this will set how long a user has access to the course from the moment of their enrolment.
For example, if the course had the enrolment length set to 4, any user enroled to that course would have four weeks to complete the course before their enrolment expired and they would no longer have access.
Checking Allow Self Enrolment will allow users to enrol to the course so long as they can access the page where the course is located, be it through finding the courses on the Organisation Home Page because the course's visibility is set to Public, or through a link to the Course Home Page if the course is Secret.
If you want to make an introductory course or sample course, checking this to self enrol whilst it is Public is the best way to allow users access.
Allowing Users to Unenrol
Lastly, if you want to give users the option to remove themselves from your course for whatever reason, be it because they have completed the course or they have found that the course isn't relevant to them, you can check this box and an option will appear for them on the Course Home Page (shown below.)