The Cost of eLearning
CBT and WBT Levels: A Discussion to Help Determine the Cost of eLearning
By Erik Lord
Classifying the level of training is a flexible metric. It is important to have a general framework for such levels, however, so both the project sponsor and the developer have a standard reference point to ensure scope and requirements are aligned. For example, when a company requests a bid on an eLearning project, everyone should have the same point of reference to determine what is being requested – resulting in pricing that is accurate and comparable.
We therefore need fairly strict definitions of what the levels are, or else they are not of any practical value. One such attempt is known as “CBT Levels”, a term reflecting its age since ‘CBT’ is somewhat dated terminology these days. So while perhaps better titled “Levels of eLearning” (or “Levels of e-Learning”, depending on your hyphenated preference), the concept remains the same: how can training be classified for purposes of style, presentation, depth and, perhaps most importantly, cost?
As applied to eLearning, such classifications are impacted by general complexity, range and richness of multimedia, and – perhaps most dramatically – the depth of interactivity. Of course, defining “interactivity” can be a nebulous quest in itself! Clicking on a ‘Next button’ requires the user to interact with the lesson, but that’s a pretty tame definition. On the other hand, it is generally accepted that the more interactive the module, the more effective it will be in achieving the objectives.
Interestingly, the actual levels defined within this class are somewhat arbitrary. Some sources suggest there are three levels of interactivity, others say four, and still other specify five! For customers looking to work with our group of eLearning experts, we’ve settled on a simple 3-level definition focused on the interactive complexity as well as the range of potential media, from simple images and photography to...