Historical Background

You will find it very intriguing to know that the term “instructional design” has a very interesting historical background. The history of instructional design is embedded into World War II when hundreds of thousands of soldiers were to be taught specific tasks in an extremely short period of time. As a strategy, the individual aspects of these complex tasks were broken down, making it easier for the soldiers to understand and grasp each step of the process.

The success of this approach was later taken and built upon, leading to the development of instructional design, a field of study that effectively combines education, psychology and communications to create the most effective teaching plans for specific groups of learners.

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Definition Of Instructional Design

“Instructional design is defined as a systematic process that is employed to develop education and training programs in a consistent and reliable fashion.” (Reiser, Dempsey, 2007)

According to the Association of Talent Development, “Instructional design is the creation of learning experiences and materials in a manner that results in the acquisition and application of knowledge and skills. The discipline follows a system of assessing needs, designing a process, developing materials and evaluating their effectiveness.”

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Simply put, the term instructional design is the process by which instructional materials, modules or lessons are designed, developed, and delivered based on the theory of how to better help people learn and develop. 

Applicability Of Instructional Design

As Instructional design requires the analysis and selection of the most appropriate strategies, methodologies, and technologies to maximize the learning experience and knowledge transfer, it is most commonly associated with academics and is employed to develop educational and training programs.

With the internet coming of age, this information age is making new demands on all sides and has hugely widened the scope of Instructional design. As e-learning has gained unparalleled popularity, Instructional designers, who are the architects of these courses, apply a variety of interactive media to improve learning and address learning objectives.

Apart from these, Instructional design is applied in developing all instructional materials, including presentation materials, participant guides, handouts, and job aids or other training materials.

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Basic Components of Instructional Design

While with time, a number of instructional design models and processes have emerged, but most of the components remain similar and almost all of them include analysis, design, development, and evaluation.

Other factors that are quintessential for instructional design are:

  • Instruction must be based on the experiences and contexts that make the learners willing and able to learn.
  • Instruction must be structured well so that it can be effectively grasped by the learners.
  • Instruction must be designed in a way that it facilitates reasoning and fills in the gaps, not being restricted to the information given. Check For:-Instructional Design Courses in Pune

Instructional Design Models

The most common and widely used instructional design models continue to be Analysis, Design, Development, Implementation and Evaluation but gradually, there are a number of other models that have been developed.

The Instructional Designers have adopted an innovative approach to facilitate learning in this new epoch, ‘The Knowledge Age’ and therefore, in the recent years, there has been a stress to implement more agile, iterative approaches, including Michael Allen’s Successive Approximation Model (SAM).

Some of the most common instructional design models are:

  • ADDIE
  • Kemp Design Model
  • Dick and Carey Model
  • Agile or rapid prototyping
  • Cathy Moore’s Action Mapping
  • SAM (Successive Approximation Model)
  • Merrill’s First Principles of Instruction

Future of Instructional Design

The future of instructional design is embedded in modern technology which demands assessing new technologies and discovering new and better ways to enhance instruction and improve overall learning experiences.  For obvious reasons, a solid background in instructional design will always be valuable and sought after skill in the times to come. 

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11 Comments

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