Web Site Makes It Easy to Create a Training Program — and to Charge for It

(From The New York Times) In a post several months ago, I described how the Web-based service MindFlash allows anyone to  create online training presentations, including reviews, quizzes and automatic grading complete with award certificates. (I illustrated the post with a little course of my own on brewing beer.)

The service has proven popular with companies that want to develop internal training programs, like on safety, harassment and other issues that employees might need to get up to speed on. MindFlash’s chief executive, Donna Wells, reports that a range of companies have developed thousands of courses that have been taken by more than 100,000 people.

But on Tuesday MindFlash is unveiling a new version of the service that should make it more interesting to a wider range of companies. That’s because the service will now allow you to charge people to take your course. One of the early preintroduction users of the new pay-for-training feature is Raz Chan, who runs a fitness and martial-arts studio in Vancouver, British Columbia. For fees ranging from $197 to $497, you can learn some of Mr. Chan’s secrets of self-defense in a series of online video courses that can take you all the way through instructor certification. “A lot of our students have been asking for a way to stay on top of the material at home,” says Mr. Chan. “And we hear from a lot of people who live too far away to come to our gym.”

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