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  • Provide visual instructions
  • Add various media to the presentations
  • Archive and share content

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We have compiled a list of the best e-learning authoring tools. We hope this comparison will be useful for anyone seeking more information about top e-learning development software.

Software

Best for

Download

Movavi AcademicCreating video tutorials
Articulate Storyline 360Producing highly-customized content
iSpring SuiteQuick and easy onboarding
Lectora InspireProducing professional HTML5 content
SHIFTOn-the-go content creation

The best e-learning software in 2022

Best for: creating video tutorials

Compatible platforms: Windows, Mac

Price: free trial, full version for $10.00 per month

Movavi Academic is a tool that will help you to create an enhanced learning process for both experienced and rookie authors. You can quickly build complete training materials with a wide selection of features and interactions available on the platform to complete your projects. If you’re looking for the best e-learning software, this might be just the pick for you.

Outstanding features:

  • Enhanced learning: add webcam footage and captions, record your screen and mouse actions, add filters and themed stickers.
  • Time-saving: new users can quickly process their educational videos like professionals and get the best results. The built-in educational set has enough distinct backgrounds and transitions to enhance your video.
  • Affordable plans: there are two licenses to help more people to benefit from using the platform and increase students participation. Both plans offer complete and extensive options.

Pros:

  • Cost-effectiveness
  • Advanced video-editing features
  • A clear, straightforward interface

Cons:

  • Doesn't have a web version
  • Can’t have more than one project open at a time

Articulate Storyline 360

Best for: producing highly-customized content

G2 rating: 4.5 out of 5

Compatible platforms: web and mobile

Price: free trial, full version for $999 per year

Articulate Storyline 360 is highly efficient for creating e-learning courses from several features, thus making it a popular and widely used tool. The ware gained a remarkable improvement from the latest updates that resulted in better overall user experience and quicker playback speed on laptops, desktop, and mobile devices. You can use a free trial to test out all the features before purchasing.

Outstanding features:

  • Huge archive: access over 45 million-plus videos, pictures, icons, vector graphics, and illustrations, etc. Users can also give their work a relatable outlook with the illustrated characters to show students the relevance of your content.
  • Creation of complex interactions: complex scenarios such as branched scenarios can be created easily with the use of slide layers. It enables the content elements to be visible based on individual actions.
  • Articulate review: the latest updated version of the program includes newly integrated website applications that help collect feedback from professionals and stakeholders by publishing your course to the public.

Pros:

  • An ever-growing library of slide templates
  • Works directly in a browser
  • Relatively simple to use

Cons:

  • Not truly mobile responsive
  • Slow processing speed
  • Infrequent updates

Get Articulate Storyline 360

iSpring Suite

Best for: quick and easy onboarding

PCMag rating: 4 out of 5

Compatible platforms: desktop and mobile

Price: free trial, full version for $770 per year

The iSpring LMS is a multiple award winner software with over 34 000 active clients from all over the world. There is an array of useful materials for your projects. The fast authoring toolkit delivers a more rapid instructional session with automated training for better learning of employees and team members.

Outstanding features:

  • Extended PowerPoint integration: a presentation that includes animations, video and audio files, etc. are intact after the presentation. You can create video files with PowerPoint slides and convert videos to share to your subscribers.
  • User interaction: interactive courses may include both visual and audio content as a narration. The authoring platform offers a screen recorder for the creation of useful screencast for explanatory sessions.
  • Easy usage: the interface is straightforward. First-time users can easily navigate to their preferred options and get work done without additional training to create interactions for timeline, 3D, and catalog.

Pros:

  • PowerPoint integration
  • Low learning curve (if you are familiar with PPT)
  • Interactive role-play scenarios

Cons:

  • Not available on Mac
  • Can’t create slide-based courses without PowerPoint

Get iSpring Suite

Lectora Inspire

Best for: producing professional HTML5 content

PCMag rating: 4.5 out of 5

Compatible platforms: web

Price: free trial, full version for $899 per year

Trivantis developed this electronic collaborative course authoring software many years ago to create a versatile scenario-based online training courses. Courses made from the easy interface powerful authoring tool is available for professional presentations and electronic assessments.

Outstanding features:

  • Text to speech: use the text-to-speech option to convert your texts to numerous automated male and female human voice options to make page tiles. The sound comes in different languages like Chinese, Italian, Spanish, and others.
  • Easy adjustments: design your course only once and access it from other devices, notwithstanding the difference in the types of devices because Lectora automatically adjusts your course to desktop, tablet, and phone views.
  • Tons of interaction templates: the numerous softboard examples can be used directly or modified on the development interface. These alterations are via the graphics package to suit your requirement before usage for the creation of responsive course designs.

Pros:

  • Web-based
  • Free access to Elearning Brothers graphics libraries
  • Text-to-speech options

Cons:

  • Not the most user-friendly interface
  • Outdated UX design
  • Slow processing speed

Get Lectora Inspire

SHIFT

Best for: on-the-go content creation

G2 rating: 4 out of 5

Compatible platforms: web

Price: free trial, full version for $970 per year

SHIFT is an e-learning workstation to thousands of online users that helps to develop courses faster and operate like professionals despite having little prior knowledge of the software. These are possible because of the straightforward interface that keeps all your needs at arm's length and does not require complex coding or technical expertise.

Outstanding features:

  • Useful software for beginners: you can use the tool to understand the rudiments of authoring activities and for making sample courses to blend your skills. The straightforward interface eliminates extra difficulties; users work from a single workplace with all the necessary tools in a place.
  • Built-in audio recorder: the program automatically optimizes audio recordings during a working session to start and stop systematically according to the progress of the screen. Just make a recording and rely on SHIFT to optimize and upload it comfortably.
  • Decent efficiency: easily update existing content without much hassle and make changes from a vast library of over ten thousand icons and characters that continually updates for laptops, mobile phones, and tablets.

Pros:

  • Works directly in a browser
  • Mobile-first
  • AI-based features

Cons:

  • No webcam recording
  • No quiz creation
  • Can't import design content from other services

Get SHIFT

Conclusion: Choosing the right authoring software

There are different authoring tools for e-learning, but your requirements – such as the ease of use and processing speed – will narrow down your shortlist. At all events, which e-learning software is right for you will depend on your needs.

If you are looking for a simple, cost-effective e-learning software solution, Movavi Academic would be a great fit for you. Start a free trial and see for yourself!

Frequently asked questions

What is an authoring tool?

An authoring tool is a software application used by educators and instructional designers to create e-learning courseware. There are several types of content authoring tools, including instructional design tools, template-focused authoring tools, Web authoring software, knowledge-capturing systems, and text-based authoring tools.

What is the best e-learning tool?

We recommend the following apps:

  • Movavi Academic
  • Articulate Storyline 360
  • iSpring Suite
  • Lectora Inspire
  • SHIFT

For more details, see this article:

The best e-learning authoring tools

How do I create my own e-learning course?

  • Step 1: Define the mission of your project

    In other words, what’s the purpose of the course? Who will it be addressed to? Most importantly, why are they taking it? By doing this, you'll clarify learning objectives and your expectations for the course.
  • Step 2: Gather your materials

    Collect together all materials that you need for the course, including coursebooks, notes, training presentations and pictures.
  • Step 3: Write an e-learning script

    Carefully think through everything you’re going to show in the video. It is better to start with a course agenda. Use those materials based on the requirements of your project, and the topics it needs to contain.
  • Step 4: Think about visual perception of your project

    Define which fonts, colors, images, or transitions you’ll use to make a course that looks coherent.
  • Step 5: Develop training materials

    You’ve collected all the elements required to create e-learning content. Now it’s time to develop them. Create graphics. Record audio. Record the screen while presenting a slideshow or film your live presentation with a webcam. The authoring tools we discuss above can help you with that.
  • Step 6: Assemble the pieces

    Finally, assemble the prepared materials into a finished project. Some of the authoring tools examples listed above can help you assemble and edit the recorded footage. Please note that experts recommend making e-learning videos no more than one and a half hours long.

Ben Jacklin

Ben is a writer from the UK with qualifications in Media and Music Technology, he specializes in software reviews and tutorials. Ben has been blogging about media and tech subjects since he was a teenager from his base in the East of England.