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What is Instructional Design?

The main goal of instructional design (ID) or instruction system design (ISD) is to construct an environment that provides learners with conditions supporting desired learning processes. Reiser and Dempsey (2007) define instructional design as a systematic process employed to develop education and training programs in a consistent and reliable fashion. The application of ID models enables the creation of authentic, well-organized and engaging materials. The types of strategies used in development instruction include: (1) organizational strategies, (2) delivery strategies on how information is carried to the student and (3) management strategies to help the learners interact with learning activities (Gordan, 2011). 


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NOTE: Please click on thumbnail to view the Instructional System Design Concept Map


The Applied Research Laboratory at Penn State University provides additional insight into instructional design, which is a:

    • Process of the systematic development of instructional specifications using learning and
      instructional theory to ensure the quality of education.
    • Discipline that is a branch of knowledge concerned with research and theory about
      instructional strategies and the process for developing and implementing those
    • Science of creating detailed specifications for the development, implementation,
      evaluation and maintenance of situation that facilitate the learning of both large
      and small units of subject matter at all levels of complexity. 
    • Reality in that it can start at any point in the design process. 
    • Instructional System that is an arrangement of resources and procedures to
      promote learning.
    • Instructional Technology that is systemic and systematic application of
      strategies and techniques derived from behavioral, cognitive and constructivist
      theories to the solution of instructional problems (Berger & Kam, 1996).


The role of an instructional design specialist at Samford University includes such thing as: providing training for faculty and staff, conducting research and synthesizing information, helping create deliverables that are learner-centered, using ID/ISD models, writing objectives, suggesting approaches to feedback, applying theory to practice, engaging in cross-disciplinary knowledge, helping design instruction, suggesting various instructional strategies, and basically assisting faculty and staff in topics related to instruction and the learning management system. 


Please select this link to explore available instructional design tips and information.
Instructional Design Resources  







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