Instructional Design

Are you designing a new course or thinking about redesigning an existing one? Need help with planning your teaching methods, strategies or course activities? What about exploring alternative assessment techniques or implementing new technologies? Are you thinking about changing formats from a traditional course to one that is fully online or blended?

If your answer is “yes” to any of the above, you might find collaborating with an Instructional Designer helpful.

Instructional designers engage in a theory and research-based process of designing and implementing instruction for better learning.
Instructional Design is the process of translating pedagogical research and practice into instructional curriculum specifically crafted to produce desired learning outcomes.  In short, instructional design is the systematic process by which instructional materials are designed, developed, and delivered. The terms instructional design, instructional technology, educational technology, curriculum design, and instructional systems design (ISD), are often used interchangeably.  A variety of instructional design definitions can be found. 

Though there are many models for designing or redesigning a course, the creative process employed by Instructional Designers, is based on improving learning and generally always includes the following:

  • Assessing overall curriculum needs
  • Analyzing learners background knowledge and instructional needs
  • Determining course goals
  • Determining course objectives and the sequence in which to address them
  • Developing and implementing instructional content, teaching strategies, and assessments
  • Conducting formative and summative course evaluations

Overall, Instructional Designers perform a wide variety of tasks, from designing training materials, teaching manuals and student guides, to developing full course materials, and/or entire curricula. The delivery system may vary from face-to-face classroom instruction to internet-based distance education, and/or blended courses. If think you could use a partner to help you brainstorm ideas for improving your course, contact an instructional designer—we’d be happy to assist you.