Localisation of E-Learning

Topmost Effective Strategies for Localisation of E-Learning for Multilingual Audiences

In recent times, the number of non-Anglophone users of the internet has boomed considerably. As per a recent study, English speakers comprise simply 26.3% of the global population of net users. With the net becoming more and more multilingual, businesses are compelled to translate and localize their online content with no exception of web-based learning materials.

In case one is planning to translate e-learning courses and adapt them to cater to the requirements of employees in various countries, adopt the following tips to make a grand success of your technology-enabled initiatives of localization of e-learning content:

Understand Target Audience

Make sure one has a clear idea of the target audiences of the localized e-learning courses. Next, segment the audience into different groups based on culture, language, and country. This is crucial as one needs more than a single localized version of one’s online course. For instance, there are two languages used in Canada (French and English) with corresponding cultures. Hence, it is good to permit clients to select e-learning content based on language rather than the country for effective targeting.

Plan From Start

Effective planning can help save much money and time with regard to the localization of e-learning material. In case you don’t plan early, it can lead to lots of technical issues down the line. It is good to consider localization while designing and drafting early versions of e-learning material. This will help in avoiding potential issues in the future.

Keep in Mind Expansion and Contraction of Content

A typical issue that arises in e-learning localization is that of contraction or expansion of the text. When one translates text into other languages, there is a change in the length of text. For instance, while the word ‘posiblemente’ covers 12 characters in Spanish, its English version ‘possibly’ takes only 8 characters. Sometimes during translation, words get longer and sometimes shorter. This should be kept in mind while creating e-learning content, be it for video subtitles or text.

Proper Coordination

This must be done with all stakeholders for averting delays and climbing expenses in the project for e-learning localization. Make sure that all of them are updated on the project and in-country reviews of localized content of e-learning are finished on time. It is good to assign an expert as the SPOC (Single Point of Contact) for ensuring effective communication and coordination.

Select font Before Content Creation

Novices in the field of localization of e-learning content typically encounter the problem of fonts. One many carefully select fonts, design layouts, and create visuals only to find that such fonts do not exist in the language being translated into. This is especially true of languages like Arabic or Chinese.

The simple solution is to select fonts for every target language prior to creating your content and ensure the support of all target languages. Though it is not possible to find a single font that supports all languages, one can find the best mix of fonts to complete the job.

Make Available Source Versions

One must make available the final versions of the assets required for compiling the final version of source courses. Typically, e-learning courses come in 2 versions: published and editable. In case the editable version is not available, the source may be required to be re-built prior to the start of translation.

In sum, while keeping in mind such tips, one will be able to create e-learning content that is optimized for translation. With proper planning, one can avoid most issues that emerge in the process and make the content suitable for multilingual audiences.

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