The Australian Government coat of Arms

Communities of practice

Rapdid eleanring tools: Storyline, Captivate, Lectora


Hi, I’ve posted this under the general Design System forum however it could fit here. Apologies to the Admins about this redundancy.

Hi all, my name’s Alex and I am a PD consultant with APRA. I am involved in overhauling existing eLearning modules in our Learning Centre. Our chief requirement is for content to be republished as HTML5 as Flash will no longer be supported after 2020.

I’ve been informed that any mandatory or Whole-Of-Government (WOG) content should meet WCAG 2.0 standards. This applies to Fraud Awareness which is being redeveloped through Dept. of Jobs.

Modules have been developed in-house or licensed using a number of rapid eLearning tools - Articulate Storyline, Captivate, and Lectora.

Storyline supports WCAG 2.0 to A and AA standards.

I would like to enquire if there are any guidelines developed for use with rapid eLearning development?.


Hi @alexarathoon it’s quite a unique problem you have. We can’t recommend or endorse products with associated costs however I would recommend experimenting and following the Digital Service Standard as closely as possible.

In terms of guidelines there is nothing I am aware of at this current time.


Thanks Alex Page, unfortunately rapid tools don’t use HTML/CSS etc. so the code snippets are of little value. They are rapid tools which uses a visual WYSIWYG engine. We can set colours, fonts, interactions.

I’ve recently heard that WCAG applies mostly to inter/intra net pages and our eLearning modules are exempt.
I’ve also found out that Articulate Story does meet some WCAG 2.0 standards A and AA.


…guidelines developed for use with rapid eLearning development?.

Are you looking for how to write accessible content for digital, or how to build an eLearning platform’s web architecture? (Or both?)

When it comes to producing content, be it for eLearning, transactional services or information services in government, I recommend using the Gov.AU Content Guide.

As for how to build out content design patterns to lay out modules for learning environments, we don’t have guidance on patterns used per se (at least, not yet). But as has mentioned, following the principles of the Digital Service Standard and understanding what both your agency and end users’ needs are (incl. access needs) will help your content people, designers and developers create appropriate patterns for learning content.

The Design System is best used by designers and developers once you’re ready to prototype how you might structure those modules within your platform, then go to build.


Hi @alexarathoon , we’ve had experience testing elearning platforms and I believe any exemption cannot be relied upon to avoid accessibility requirements. If a user within the department you work in requires the use of assistive technology to do part of their job (in this case elearning) and the platform doesn’t work with the elearning software, this begins to fall foul of the disability discrimination act.

Elearning through the browser needs to be accessible to WCAG 2.0 AA. The vendor’s statement of conformance cannot be relied upon as to whether it is accessible and will need to be externally audited by a web accessibility professional to really give you confidence that accessibility is being addressed and guide purchasing decisions with which elearning package to use. within the department does web accessibility auditing.


Thanks for your replied @alexandra and @rossmullen.

It appears that only specific modules will need to meet the WCAG 2.0 guidelines and these are being outsourced so it’s less of an issue than initially anticipated.

I appreciate The Gov.AU Content Guide so will start there - Aiming to ensure content is as clean and accessible as possible. These are valuable considerations for anyone working in digital content.

Good point @rossmullen if we were mandated for our modules to be WCAG 2.0 compliant then getting them assessed would be a valid call.



I would suggest all modules need to meet WCAG 2 guidelines. If your users have any impairments and can’t use the elearning for whatever reason, regardless of it being outsourced, if your department is using it, it needs to be accessible. It can begin to set a poor precedent if work is outsourced to think its other peoples responsibility and no longer our problem.


My 2 cents…

Ideally accessibility should be looked at from the point of view of disabled people.
Sites/apps should be made accessible so that everyone can use them, not just so that a guideline can be met and a box ticked.

If I was working on such a project I would strongly recommend that commonly used accessibility standards (WCAG AA - AAA where possible) are met regardless of any guidelines.

In terms of the software you mentioned, they claim to be accessible, or to allow you to create something accessible (IMO section 508 is fairly compatible to Australia’s WCAG compliance although I’m not sure if it is legally sufficient):