12 MIN READ

The 10 Best eLearning Authoring Tools: Review & Comparison

An e-learning authoring tool is an important component in course creation. This tool can help course creators, L&D professionals and businesses across all types of industries create online training content for their teams just as easily and quickly.

Depending on the features and capabilities it offers, it can help make the elearning content creation and development process a lot more enjoyable and fun!

Ιf you are considering investing in one, you have come to the right place.

This article can help you distinguish the differences between different types of course authoring tools, figure out what you need to look for one and choose the one that is right for you.

A course authoring tool is a program that allows you to create different types of elearning content. You can use it to design and redesign the content and arrange it into an interactive format that makes sense and serves a learning purpose. The usual format these tools come in is SCORM, HTML5, xAPI or TIN CAN files.

With it, you can experiment with media files, including videos, texts, photos, and audio and create quizzes, questionnaires, augmented reality or any other type of content you need.

The course authoring software combines the different elearning material into a course package, helping course instructors personalize the learning experience to better suit their specific needs and of their students’, their teaching style or course requirements.

It can be used to offer high-quality courses that can be uploaded into your preferred learning management system (LMS) for hosting.

Hosting and delivering of the Content

The results of an authoring tool can be exported and uploaded for hosting in a Learning Management System like LearnWorlds.

An authoring software’s work is to create the educational content, but most do not offer any kind of hosting services.

LearnWorlds is a cloud-based, easy-to-use and more affordable alternative to traditional LMS that can host SCORM and HTML5 learning units and comes with basic authoring capabilities.

Additionally, comes with ecommerce capabilities, which means you can also sell your content, courses or training.

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Αuthoring tools differ in terms of deployment type and pricing model.

So it matters whether it is SaaS/cloud-based, self-hosted, or self-hosted on the cloud, desktop-based or is accessible on a mobile app (Android or iOS). Each has its advantages and disadvantages and you need to look deeper into these.

Also, you have to look at its pricing model and decide which one is the best for you. There is a subscription, free, freemium or one-time purchased license.

In the search for the best course authoring tool, you need to look for those elements that meet your needs but also fit certain basic criteria.

In terms of your requirements, you have to decide how much you are willing to invest for it, how skilled you are using it and decide on the interactivity level of elearning content you want to produce, as well as how many authors will work with it.

At the very basic level, the course authoring tool you will choose need to meet the following:

Having these in mind, let’s go through the list of the 10 best elearning authoring tools in the market. Read the specifications for each and choose the one that comes with the features and capabilities you need.

In contrast to individual course authoring tools, the LearnWorlds elearning platform allows you to have everything in one place. LearnWorlds is an all-in-one elearning tool that allows you to create interactive training content and has the power to offer a unique and fun learning experience to users.

Who is it for?

It is ideal for individuals, freelancers, small/medium companies, enterprises and non-profit organizations.

LearnWorlds Pricing

LearnWorlds has three pricing plans which includes authoring and hosting. High Volume & Corporate plans are available for bigger accounts:

The plans come with different features and hosting capabilities. You can compare the plans here.

Pros and Cons

Pros

Cons

LearnWorlds’ Authoring

LearnWorlds is primarily a cloud-based LMS with build-in authoring capabilities like:

LearnWorlds as an LMS and content delivery

Very few authoring tools provide a hosting of any kind. Here is where LearnWorlds differ, as it doesn’t only offer authoring capabilities, but it can also host content from other Authoring tools as an LMS.

In this facet, LearnWorlds provides:

If you are looking for LMS software that can help you create elearning courses, you can get a free 30-day trial to get started with LearnWorlds.

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Articulate Storyline is a popular course authoring tool amongst many demanding course creators and instructional designers. Many are choosing it as their favorite tool because it has winning features and does what it promises to do.

Who is it for?

It is more suitable for newer designers because of its ease of use. Also, it is an ideal choice for freelancers, academics, and businesses of any size or industry.

Articulate Storyline Pricing

There is only one price for business teams which is up to $1,299/yearly (per user). Alternatively, you can buy Articulate Storyline 3 with a one-time payment at $1,398 (per license) for new customers or $699 (per license) for existing customers upgrading from a previous version of Storyline. Here’s a comparison chart of all Articulate Storyline versions and their features to help you choose.

Information retrieved from Articulate and ArticulateSupport on 20th January 2020.

Articulate Storyline Support

Articulate Storyline support is available via live chat and online where you can find help through community forums, resources and articles on course building, books, tutorials, and user guides.

Pros and Cons

Pros:

Cons:

Elucidat comes with a beautiful user-friendly interface, modern and easy navigation, which makes it one of the easiest-to-use course creation tools in this list. While it doesn’t offer the flexibility to create your own course template, its 25,000 different ones are enough to compensate for that.

Who is it for?

It is ideal for small/medium companies, large enterprises, and non-profit organizations.

Elucidat Pricing

Elucidat has three pricing options: Growth, Enterprise, and High Volume. For all plans, you need to contact Elucidate and request a price for each depending on your requirements.

Information retrieved from Elucidat on 20th January 2020.

Elucidat Support

Elucidat support is available during business hours, email and live online. Outside of these hours, it has a help desk where you can search for articles written by the Elucidat team that offer advice and answers to most common questions.

Pros and Cons

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Adobe Captivate is a popular choice for an authoring tool and it’s one of the top premium ones in the market. Depending on what you need it for, you can use it to create immersive learning scenarios and high-quality online courses. Adobe Captivate is one of the top-rated and most recognized brands.

Who is it for?

It is aimed for use by freelancers, small/medium companies, large enterprises, and non-profit organizations.

Adobe Captivate Pricing

Information retrieved from Adobe on 20th January 2020.

Adobe Captivate Support

Adobe Captivate support is accessed via email. Whenever you need help using the product, you can access their Help Center or their community forums where you can ask other people or professionals for help.

Pros and Cons

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Cons:

Lectora Online checks off the majority of the feature points that come with any course authoring tool. Packed up with a responsive design, automated versioning, interactivity, branching, quizzing features and course template options, this tool will prove itself handy for creating elearning content.

Who is it for?

It is ideal for freelancers, small/medium companies, large enterprises, and non-profit organizations.

Lectora Online Pricing

Lectora Online has four pricing plans (storage is for team plans):

Information retrieved from Lectora Online on 17th February 2020.

Lectora Online Support

Lectora Online support is available during business hours. Outside of these hours, you can visit the Trivantis community and communicate with other users, check out the blog, or the FAQs.

Pros and Cons

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Cons:

iSpring Suite offers the quickest elearning solution of authoring elearning training. The ease-of-use and the speed it needs to create online courses are unbelievable. Its newest version – iSpring Suite 9, is built to facilitate content for onboarding, product training, and assessment.

Who is it for?

This authoring tool is great for new entrants who don’t need the full authoring capabilities of a more seasoned tool. It is suitable for academic institutions, freelancers and large enterprises..

iSpring Suite Pricing

iSpring Suite has two basic pricing plans:

For more users on each plan check individual prices as seen on the iSpring Solutions website.
Information retrieved from iSpring Solutions on 20th January 2020.

iSpring Suite Support

iSpring Suite support is available 24/7 and live online. On top of that, it has an online community with a range of forum activities and a knowledge base with guides and articles you go through whenever you need help using the tool.

Pros and Cons

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Cons:

Just like its name says, EasyGenerator is super easy to use. It has rich interface options and it is great for use by people who are starting out and have no previous experience in creating online courses. This tool aims to simplify the course creation process to make it accessible to everyone.

Who is it for?

It is ideal for people who have no elearning background. It is up for use by freelancers, small/medium companies, large enterprises, and non-profit organizations.

Easy Generator Pricing

Easy Generator has three pricing plans:

Information retrieved from EasyGenerator on 20th January 2020.

Easy Generator Support

Easy Generator support is available during business hours and offered live online through Easy Generator Live. The tool also has a knowledge base that is full of articles divided by categories for easier browsing, a resources page with case studies and a blog.

Pros and Cons

Pros:

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isEasy promises to help you create interactive and professional e-learning courses, quickly and hassle-free. Its modern design and interface make it easy to create interactive and dynamic training content that is attractive and engages the user, and all of that within just a few steps.

Who is it for?

It’s ideal for freelancers, small/medium companies, and non-profit organizations.

isEazy Pricing

isEazy has four pricing plans available:

Information retrieved from isEasy on 20th January 2020.

isEazy Support

isEazy support is available 24/7. It has a knowledge base you can visit whenever you need help using the tool. It has many example courses and demos you can check out, FAQs, a blog with helpful guides and articles.

Pros and Cons

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Cons:

Koantic praises itself for being the elearning authoring tool that is designed for everyone and a ‘PowerPoint’ booster. In contrast to some other authoring tools, Koantic can work with training material to create content that contains a range of types of content including slides, quizzes, and interactive video.

Who is it for?

It’s a great choice for educational institutions, small/medium companies and non-profit organizations.

Koantic Pricing

Koantic has three pricing packages available:

Information retrieved from Koantic on 20th January 2020.

Koantic Support

Koantic support is available during business hours and can be live online. Apart from that, it has a knowledge base that you can access that contains useful resources and tutorials.

Pros and Cons

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Evolve offers an elearning solution that users would describe as top-notch. It allows you to create elearning content with HTML5 quickly without losing on its rich quality. What’s great about Evolve is that it gives you complete control over your course creation and how it is presented.

Who is it for?

It is ideal for freelancers, small/medium companies, and non-profit organizations.

Evolve Pricing

Evolve has only one pricing plan available:

Information retrieved from EvolveAuthoring on 20th January 2020.

Evolve Support

Evolve offers a range of online resources to help you out. The Evolve Academy has free and downloadable courses to help you become more familiar with the tool it offers. It also invites you to join their online community where you can communicate with other Evolve users and check out their YouTube channel for guides and webinar recordings.

Pros and Cons

Pros:

Cons:

Don’t forget, it’s important first to assess your needs and requirements of your business before making up your mind. As you can see, there are many types of course authoring tools and not every single one will be a good fit for what you need.

A test-drive through a trial on the tools that offer it is going to convince you whether or not it is the best one for you. So which tool will you use to offer online learning?

Create a beautiful online school without any technical skills.

Start free trial
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Content Creator at

Kyriaki is a Content Creator for the LearnWorlds team with more than three years of experience in digital marketing. Graduated from the University of Huddersfield with a Guidance degree, she has equipped herself with hands-on experience in education management and career guidance.