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Authoring Tools


New technologies are changing the way we produce and deliver digital learning – with elearning authoring tools becoming an increasingly popular choice.  Understand a bit more about the 12 favorite authoring tools on the market in 2020. Plus, find out: What is an authoring tool? What can you achieve with one? Then assess your options!

What is an authoring tool? An authoring tool is a piece of software that enables the creation of digital content. This could be as simple as creating a Microsoft Word document, or as complex as a graphic design tool. A piece of authoring software allows the user to generate and manipulate multimedia objects for the content’s intended purpose.

Authoring tools also come with their own range of supported elearning formats, including SCORM (1.2, 2004), xAPI/TinCan, HTML5, AICC, cmi5 and LTI. See our detailed article on SCORM vs. xAPI for more info.

Electronic learning, or commonly known as e-learning, is among the earliest applications of web-based technology (Azhari, 2015). E-learning is defined as the delivery of learning using purely internet and digital technology (Al-Busaidi, 2013.

The best authoring tool for you will depend on a range of factors, including:

  • Your technical expertise
  • Whether you want simple or more sophisticated learning experiences
  • How much content you need to produce and manage
  • Your translation requirements
  • If you are a sole author or work with a wider team
  • Your budget
Favourite authoring tools
  3. Elucidat – Helps big employers drive down the cost business-critical training
  4. Adobe Captivate – Gives experienced authors the power to create high-quality content
  5. Articulate Storyline – Ideal for individual users who prefer PowerPoint, with an added layer of customization
  6. Articulate Rise – Users with access to Articulate 360 can produce simple elearning courses fairly quickly
  7. Gomo – Best for experienced learning designers that are not looking for advanced customization
  8. Lectora – Gives traditional, capable authors an effective tool for producing HTML5 content
  9. Adapt – Designed for technical authors who are looking to design bespoke HTML5 authoring through back-end design
  10. DominKnow – Perfect for teams whose focus in on responsive screen capture and software simulation
  11. Easygenerator – Authoring software designed for small teams who need to produce simple content, fast
  12. iSpring Suite – Desktop PowerPoint- based tool that’s a great option for novice learning designers who don’t have to worry about updating content regularly
  13. Evolve – Built for teams who need to collaborate together and don’t mind putting in the time to learn how to use it
  14. Brainshark – Easy to use authoring tool targeted at sales teams. Ideal for those looking to create coaching