We all know how frustrating creating a unique online course from scratch can be.
Dealing with the tech, putting all the content together, and making it interesting for students is really hard!
But imagine if there was an easier way. Do you know that half of the teachers use AI themselves for lesson planning  and for creating online courses?
These tools are just as helpful. They make complex tasks easier and help you put your course together faster.
In this article, I'll show you exactly how to create an online course using AI, even if you have zero experience.
Let's get started!
How to create an online course using AI
Step 1: Choose a Course Topic
Choosing the right topic is crucial for creating an online course that students will love.
You can start by researching popular topics related to your niche on sites like Udemy or Skillshare to see what's already out there and what students are interested in learning.
Look for gaps where a new course could add value or a unique angle you could take on an existing topic, then leverage your expertise and experience to develop original content and a fresh perspective.
Think about a specific skill you could teach or knowledge you can share that would help students succeed.
You can also dig into student demand by exploring forums like Reddit and social media groups to see what people are asking about and struggling with in your field.
Let genuine student needs and interests guide your topic selection.
Plus, run some quick surveys to validate your ideas. Choosing a topic with a built-in audience will give your course the best chance of success.
Step 2: Generate Course Ideas
Once you are done researching potential topics and have a good sense of your potential students' demands and interests, it's time to start generating specific course ideas and content frameworks.
This is where an AI assistant can be invaluable in creating an online course.
Have a conversation with an AI tool like Claude or ChatGPT to brainstorm the scope and structure of your course.
So, how can these AI tools help?
Describe the audience, goals, and topic areas you identified, and ask your AI assistants to suggest possible course titles, outlines, and lesson ideas that fit that framework.
With an AI assistant, you can rapidly develop and iterate on creative course concepts optimized for your niche.
Here's an example:
This is the prompt that I used:
Write me X online course ideas on [Course Topic] for [Target Audience], focusing on [Main Focus], enabling learners to [Objective].
Step 3: Design Initial Course Outline
Now that you've landed on a winning topic, it's time to structure your course content. I'm sure you've stared at a blank document, wondering where to start.
Instead of pulling your hair out and trying to map everything out yourself, let ChatGPT or Claude be your outline BFF.
Have a quick back-and-forth chat to get the AI's suggestions for your course framework based on the audience, goals, and topic you described.
It'll propose an orderly sequence of modules, assessments, and materials. Take its draft and tweak it by adding specifics that align with your expertise.
With AI's help, designing the architecture for your online course doesn't have to be painful. It can actually be the fun part!
Here's what ChatGPT came up with when I asked it to create an online course outline on "Creating AI-Enhanced Video Content for Social Media"
This is the prompt that I used:
Design a course structure on [Specific Course Idea] for beginners with no experience that takes [Course Length]. It should include interactive quizzes, interactive exercises, and videos on each topic, and one final assignment at the end.
Step 4: Generate Course Content
Now for the fun part—using AI to generate draft content for each module in your course!
1. Create text content
ChatGPT is an amazing tool for quickly creating initial text, quizzes, assignments, and more based on your course outline.
For each lesson, give ChatGPT a brief prompt explaining the key objectives, examples, and materials to cover.
Course Title: [Your Course Title]
Lesson [Number]: [Lesson Title]
- Objectives: [Briefly list the main objectives]
- Key Concepts/Examples: [Specify important concepts or examples to include]
- Style/Instruction: [Indicate preferred style (e.g., conversational) and any special instructions (e.g., include a quiz)]
- Additional Notes: [Any other relevant information]
It will return draft text that teaches the concepts in an educational, easy-to-understand style.
The goal is to use AI to rapidly develop a framework for lesson materials.
Then, spend your time giving that content with a human touch—relatable stories, thoughtful explanations, and clear examples tailored to how you teach best.
Here's what ChatGPT generated using the prompt above:
2. Create video content
If you want to go with the video format, the same idea works for creating video scripts. Give ChatGPT a high-level overview, and it'll provide a draft script to get you going.
Create videos with AI
Then, use AI video generator tools like Synthesia to make those scripts pop with cool graphics, animations, and visuals for your videos.
Step 5: Build the Course Platform
The final step is choosing a course platform to host and sell your content. User-friendly options like Teachable, Thinkific, or Podia make it simple to get your course up and running.
First, organize your modules, lessons, quizzes, and materials into a logical flow. Use the platform's templates to easily build out aesthetically pleasing course pages.
Upload all the content you created, embedding videos and images. Take advantage of features like drip-release lessons on a schedule, private student forums, and customizable assessments.
Set up your course checkout process and access rules—will it be self-paced or cohort-based? Paid upfront or by subscription?
Configure these settings to align with your goals. Leverage the platform's marketing tools to create coupons, bundles, and sales funnels to attract students.
Don't forget to thoroughly test enrollment, course navigation, material access, and completion from a student's perspective.
How to speed up the process: leverage an AI course creator
If you want the process to be more streamlined and efficient, it's time to turn to AI course creator tools.
Coursebox (My review here) stands out as a brilliant tool that can help you create your course content with remarkable speed and efficiency.
It's all about simplifying the complex parts of course creation, from structuring your modules to coming up with engaging content.
Here's a step-by-step how to create an online course with Coursebox AI:
Also, there is other option - Height Platforms (read my review here). Although this tool doesn't help you build entire course lessons, the built-in AI chat is really helpful for coming up with content ideas, as well as pricing and marketing strategies.
Final thoughts on how to create an online course using AI
So, there you have it – a straightforward guide to creating your own online course using the power of artificial intelligence.
The journey of online course creation might seem daunting at first, but with AI by your side, it becomes much more manageable and fun.
If you want the process even quicker, you can leverage an AI course creator like Coursebox.
This tool simplifies every step, from brainstorming ideas, course description to finalizing content, ensuring your course is not only informative but also engaging for your potential students.