How many lessons should your course have?

How many e-course lessons to create

How many e-course lessons to create for your online course depends on many different factors. Let’s review all aspects you should keep in mind when deciding how many lessons will be the best choice for you.


The variety of online courses out there is huge. And it’s a no surprise since there are many benefits of creating an online course!

There are courses with just one section and several lessons that still manage to cover all one must know about the topic. Then there also are courses with tens of sections and at least several lessons in each.

So how to understand how many e-course lessons to create?

Before even getting into this, keep in mind:

  • choose what works for YOU and YOUR AUDIENCE
  • people are not very eager to learn through tens of lessons if they could’ve learned the same in half the number
  • the amount of lessons is not what determines the worth of your course!

How many e-course lessons to create

Questions to answer when deciding how many e-course lessons to create

QUESTION #1 How broad is your chosen topic?

Are you covering a very focused topic with a clear action plan and an easily achievable goal? Or is your course more informative, covering different aspects of one topic or maybe even several different topics?

For example, an online course “How to plant and grow Rebutia cactus” has a clear goal and it’d be enough to cover the very basics in just several lessons.

In this case, it’d be great to create two different sections: Section 1 being all about planting and Section 2 – all about growing.

Focusing on just one specific product gives fewer options to consider and therefore, it’s easier to share actual steps to take.

In this case, both sections could consist of 2-3 lessons and the student would get all the necessary info.

Quick, easy, actionable!

But if the topic of the course is “Cactuses: all you need to know”, the title would request more information and therefore – more and descriptive lessons covering various aspects of cactuses, besides that, keeping in mind not only one specific kind but all of them.

As long as you have a bit smaller and focused topic, it’ll be easier to create a valuable course but with fewer lessons.


QUESTION #2 What is your audience’s attention span

Depending on who is in your perfect audience – and who will be interested in your online course – you can easily decide how many e-course lessons to create.

For example, if your perfect students profile is a busy person with not enough time to spare for long and descriptive lessons – make fewer of them and do your best to always stay on point.

If your perfect audience consists of people who have tons of free time on their hands and they love to learn – add more information, therefore, create more lessons.

It might also depend on how old are the people you’re targeting. For older people it’s harder to learn, therefore, you can keep your lessons short and actionable, adding in some additional info for those who might be interested without feeling overwhelmed.

If you’re targeting younger people, they might be more eager to learn in-depth information and it could be easier for them to keep in mind long paragraphs of rather complicated guidance.

It is important to keep in mind that people are very different. Therefore, focusing on a specific audience and researching their preferences is very important!

The features I’ve mentioned in this article are only for an example. Maybe your target audience couldn’t agree less with what I’ve stated.


QUESTION #3 What will be the structure of your course?

Sometimes course creators choose to make very value-packed courses, even if they are on a small topic.

Value-packed doesn’t always mean the information itself but also adding in videos, homeworks, quizzes, other bonus materials.

In this case, it’d request creating more lessons than just the basic few so it’s easier to follow the content and understand what’s already done but what’s still waiting.

Platforms like Teachable make it easy for course students to follow the lessons they’ve already taken. Therefore, separating various tasks in different lessons can be a great way to make things easier for your students.


QUESTION #4 What will be the price for your course?

If your course will be on the cheaper range, it’s alright to create fewer lessons. After all, we get what we pay for!

But if you’re planning to charge hundreds, it won’t be fair to share only a few lessons per topic.

As previously said, the number of lessons won’t determine the value of your course. But there definitely will be a difference between 5 and 25 lesson course and the price you should and could request.

Make sure to give people the value they’re searching for.


So after all… How many e-course lessons to create?

The most important thing to remember is to adjust this number to your topic, audience and overall vision of the course.

I’d say the perfect number is the average of it all – around 3-5 sections, up to 5-7 lessons per each. This gives a chance to create a course that is not too overwhelming but still consists of enough various lessons to cover all one must learn.

If your planned course would consist of more than 10 sections and more than 10 lessons for each section – consider turning this into several smaller courses instead.

Also, use a chance to keep people motivated by creating fewer lessons but making them more actionable!


Before you go…

Remember, you can always adjust and improve along the way. Don’t cling to the idea about how many e-course lessons to create. Start working on the content, give it to your people and figure out the details along the way.

You’ve got any comments or questions about this? Feel free to leave them below!

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