We have developed our own tool to build DataCamp courses. In this article, we’ll walk through the most important features of the DataCamp course editor, or Teach editor.
If you want more detailed information on authoring the different exercise types of a BI course, you can refer to the following articles:
Conceptual exercise (Multiple Choice or Drag and Drop)
A series of 3-4 remote desktop exercises (a.k.a. VM or Virtual Machine Exercises)
Navigating the Teach editor
On the left side of the editor is a series of tabs. We will cover the three most relevant ones here.
The first is the Edit tab, represented by a pencil. This is where you’ll create exercises.
The next one is the Assets tab, represented by a paper clip icon. This is where you can upload images that will be used in the slides by either browsing for a file or dragging and dropping a file in the upload file section. Assets are stored on our servers and can be used in your course by copying the URL to the clipboard and pasting it into the relevant exercise or slide.
Lastly, there is the Build tab. This is where you will be able to see the status of the builds. Every time you save your changes, in the background a commit will be triggered on GitHub. At this point, the course will “rebuild” to include your latest changes.
Authoring your course
In the Edit tab, you will see the course outline on the left. It displays all the exercises in each chapter. The icon to the left of the exercise title gives you some more information about the exercise type.
To start working in the editor, you'll create an exercise by clicking the "add exercise" button, which opens a menu of available exercise types. These include Video, Multiple Choice, Remote Desktop Exercises, and beyond.
Once you've added an exercise, you'll need to edit it. This is the exercise editing screen, where you're going to spend most of your time. Each exercise type contains different fields. The most common exercise type, the Remote Desktop Exercise, has fields for background context, instructions on how to complete the exercise (for every step), hints, questions, and finally the feedback messages.
The text fields are formatted in Markdown, one of the most popular ways to stylize plain text. If you've never used Markdown before, have no fear. There is also a toolbar of buttons that help you format the text displayed in the exercise.
You can preview an exercise at any point in time by clicking on the preview button in the bottom right. The preview will appear in a new tab in your browser, so make sure you have pop-ups enabled.
As you're editing your course, you'll notice an "unsaved changes" indicator in the bottom right. This is a simple reminder that something has changed since your last save. We suggest that you save after each meaningful batch of changes. When it's time to save, just click the save button. We strongly recommend including an informative message describing your changes. It will make it much easier to review them later. If you're familiar with Git and GitHub, every save corresponds to a Git commit behind the scenes, and this message will be your commit message.
That’s it for now. You’ll be able to find more detailed information about authoring each of the different exercise types in the articles linked at the start of this article.