For long document (workbooks and workbooks) development, the more upfront planning the better. As part of a blended learning course development, long document development can be quite a challenge.
We use a few advanced techniques that minimize the effort required to build long documents for maximum flexibility.
Long Document Workbook Design
Although Word, Pages, and FrameMaker can help build flexible documents, there is nothing like Adobe InDesign for long document creation. Consistent formatting and flexibility are possible within a single-source book using layers, conditional text, variables, hierarchical page layouts, and styles.
- Print (ISBNs, page bleeds, high-resolution graphics, and no hyperlinks)
- eBook (No page numbers, medium-resolution graphics, no ISBN, hyperlinks)
- Interactive PDF (Best of both worlds but with animation, forms, and jump hotspots)
- Language (Whaaatttt? Not everybody speaks English?)
- Private label (Logos, color, page design may need to be customized)
- Text attributes (Adjust text styles based on brand standards or client request)
A long document is organized as front matter (FM, below), optional sections, and back matter (BM). Front matter includes the title page, copyright page, table of contents, introduction, preface, and so on. Each section contains multiple chapters and back matter includes the index, about the author, other works, and so on. The cover spread (for print is usually treated as a separate design). For blended learning, the approach we’ve taken in book design accommodates online, eBook, interactive, and print:
Rather than create master documents for specific uses, single-source document design makes it possible to accommodate all of the above easily. It just takes some planning and a little more upfront effort.
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