Course Maps: still a great tool for IDs and their clients.
There has been discussion of ditching Course Maps for rapid e-learning projects. I can see why. It makes sense if it is an internal project, or derivative of previous work.
However, I am still a fan. I am a big advocate of using them with 1) new clients, 2) complex learning paths, 3) branching interactions, or 4) when you simply need to get buy-in prior to committing time and energy to a new solution.
In my mind, challenging yourself to tell the story (which I jokingly refer to as "the Hansel and Gretel") forces you to visualize your project completely from the learner's perspective. If you can't tell the story well, you probably have not designed a engaging course of learning. Producing and explaining course maps also helps your client form a mental and emotional image of the journey, prior to your completion of any storyboards or a prototype.