Online Training Standards

Guidelines for Developing Online Training Courses

All training courses must meet Washington state requirements and be within the scope of practice for the target audience. The following standards apply to all online training courses. Courses that meet these standards will be approved. 

Note: Only self-paced online learning models will be considered.  Self-paced learning is defined as learning which requires the student to read/view or listen to material with interactive checkpoints or activities prior to the final test.  Self-study online learning such as reading or viewing material without interactive checkpoints and completing a test does not meet the standard.

Learning Objectives
List the specific skills and/or knowledge that the learner will have as a result of taking the course. Learning objectives should be observable behaviors (state, list, discuss, show, document, record, identify, use, recite, etc.).

A table of contents 
There must be a clear way to navigate through the curricula when the training material is long (multi-module).

Interactive activities and/or exercises 
There must be curriculum activities that actively engage the learner and increase participant interaction throughout the training. Most eLearning software (Articulate, Captivate, Blackboard, etc.) have numerous options for building interactive activities. These activities should assist the learner to gauge their understanding of the material in the course. The learner should not be able to proceed through the course without engaging in the activities. Examples of these activities include but are not limited to:

  • Scenarios with multiple responses and a best response
  • Case studies with multiple responses and a best response
  • Multiple choice quiz
  • True/false checkpoints
  • Drag and drop matching activity
  • Fill in the blank activity
  • Chat and email options

Learning guidance 
Include case studies, examples, stories, and/or graphics to illustrate the concept being taught. Relating the course information to actual experience helps the student retain the information. The curriculum must meet WA state requirements and be within the scope of practice for the target audience.

Formatting that meets basic standards of readability
Use subheadings, short sentences, bullets, graphics, and white space for ease of reading.

Module reviews and/or a test at the end with 80% pass rate
There must be a final test and the pass rate must be 80%. If the material is long or complex, there should also be module reviews, knowledge or skill checks. If a participant does not get 80% of the test correct, they should not get credit for completing the course.

Final test questions tied to learning objectives
Test questions must link back to the expected learning objectives. Test questions should be based on the most important information that the learner takes away from the course.

The ability to "go-back" when the student reaches the test
Participants need a chance to review information before testing. The software needs to let learners navigate back and forth through the curriculum until they feel prepared to take the test.

Downloadable job aides where applicable
Provide guides/handouts that reinforce the learning, whenever possible. Job Aides are a benefit to the learner and become a reference guide for the future.

Access within 24 hours
For businesses also teaching courses developed: Provide clear instructions on how students get questions answered during the course. An instructor or representative must be available within 24 hours during the business week.