Authoring tools are often described as software programs that let developers or instructional designers create content without needing to write programming code. For a large number of authoring tools, this is true. Many of the most popular tools, however, include their own sophisticated scripting languages or use programming languages such as JavaScript to allow developers to create powerful e-learning content by writing functions line by line.

As little as 10 or 15 years ago, it was easy to identify authoring tools. The instructional development process was straightforward and well-established. Computer-based training (CBT) courses, delivered via CD-ROM or over a network server, were designed and authored using turnkey authoring packages—and there were many. By 1993, there were over 165 authoring tools; however, many of these no longer ...

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