Method Towards Instructional Design
Simple step methodologies provide an organized design procedure for the use of instructional materials that can facilitate the creation and maintenance of classes and trainings. These methodologies are applicable to current courses, suggesting practices for redesign to infuse your delivery with a new effectiveness and vitality. They may be utilized for incorporating new technology into the creation and delivery of courses. They are also beneficial for the development of courses using alternative delivery methods.
First apply the ADDIE Instructional Design technique methodology: individual steps are to Assess and analyze needs, Design instruction and presentations, Develop materials, Implement activities and courses, and Evaluate participant progress and instructional materials effectiveness. Next, review Gagne's Nine Events of Instruction as a participant centric mechanism for progressing from lecture based to activities based constructivism instruction, where learners "construct" their own knowledge based on their interpretation of the subject matter. The ARCS model highlights motivational factors.
I am sure you, like me, are aware of Instructional design Models and Methodologies. (1) However, I find that, except at a subconscious level, I tend not to utilize these in my daily professional activities. I do spend time and thought each semester on my class syllabi and before each of my presentations on how I can make the course more "fun" and effective for participants. My first objective here is to provide you with a procedure simple enough to internalize and utilize without great conscience effort.
Because ADDIE was one of the first Design Models, there has been much discussion about its effectiveness and appropriateness. I am introducing this methodology for its simplicity, ease of application, and cyclic nature.
On my way to work I Analyze how my last class/presentation went and about what I can do to do to make it better. I examine the goals and objectives of the presentation and the nature of the participants to try to determine the appropriateness of the instructional design. How did the last session go? What stimulated the participants, when did their eyes start glaze over, the yawns start, and the heads nod? Am I meeting their needs?
Design is concerned with subject matter analysis, lesson planning, and media selection.
A course of instruction may focus on skills from three different objective domains, Cognitive, Psychomotor, and Affective. Bloom's taxonomy orders this Cognitive domain from the most simple, Knowledge, through Comprehension, Application, Analysis, Synthesis to the most complex, Evaluation.
The Psychomotor domain is concerned with gross and fine-motor skills looking at behaviors that can be determined through task analysis.
The Affective domain deals with attitudinal behavior from simple awareness and acceptance to internalization as attitudes become internalized. Progress can be mapped utilizing Krathwohl et. al.'s five levels of: Receiving, Responding, Valuing, Organizing, and Characterizing.
Lesson planning requires that you determine your:
Joyce and Flowers list seven instructional functions I often use; you may find these useful in determining how best to incorporate available technology into your presentations.
The choice of media is determined by contingencies of the participant's needs and available resources.
Development is a process of creation and testing of learning experiences and seeks to answer questions such as:
Negative responses indicate a need for revision. Implementation is the presentation of the learning experiences to the participants utilizing the appropriate media. Leaning, skills or understanding, are "demonstrated" to the participants, who practice initially in a "safe" setting and then in the targeted workspace. It may involve showing participants how to make the best use of interactive learning materials, presenting classroom instruction, or coordinating and managing a distance-learning program. The progress of the learning frequently follows cyclic patterns based on motivation and intention. Curriculum should be organized in a spiral manner such that the participant continually builds upon what they have already learned.
Evaluation is of two levels. The most important is to gauge the success of the participant obtaining and retaining the demonstrated skills and understandings. The second is to determine how successful the instructional design package was in facilitating effective participant learning. The final question becomes, How can I modify the package to improve its next presentation?
1. Gain attention - Start by gaining your learners' attention using an analogy, anecdote, paradox, photograph, magazine article, demonstrations or any other media. Display an outline of your lecture plan in a visual form (eg. an illustration, a summary, a diagram, a map, or chart). This gives learners a framework into which they can organize subsequent content.
2. Inform learner of objectives - Describe what you plan to achieve, what learners will be doing and what they may be using. State, ‘At the end of the lecture you will be able to….'. Create expectancy via your objectives and description of the structure of the lecture.
3. Stimulate recall of prior learning - Relate your new lesson to situations or knowledge that your learners are already familiar with, e.g. the previous lesson.
4. Present stimuli with distinctive features - Describe the key points in your lesson, emphasizing distinctive features, using a variety of techniques if possible. For example, use photos, drawings, the real thing etc. Vary the format in order to maintain attention and to increase comprehension.
5. Guide learning - Present your instruction in small steps (chunking) leading from simple to complex.
6. Elicit performance - Involve learners in questioning, discussion and demonstration to confirm that they have learnt from your instruction, to increase comprehension and to maintain attention through active participation.
7. Provide feedback - As learners respond to your questioning, provide them with reinforcement or remediation when necessary.
8. Assess performance - Use a quiz or assignment to confirm mastery of your objectives.
9. Enhance retention and learning transfer - Provide the opportunity for learners to apply the outcome of their training in a real world environment eg. realistic assignment using real data and equipment. Incorporate the full experiential learning cycle into activities so that students are encouraged to reflect on and analyze their experiences.
Motivation is an important component of design; the groups of participants who have a range of individual preferences, abilities, and altitudes often complicate it. Motivated learners become active and curious, which has a positive effect on their performance. The ARCS model provides a framework for incorporating motivational techniques throughout a lesson.
1. Attention - Capture participants' interest and stimulate an attitude of inquiry. For example: ask questions; use emotional or personal information; create a mental challenge; use human-interest examples.
2. Relevance - Make the instruction relevant to the learners' needs and goals. Match the instruction to the learning styles and personal interests of the learners. Tie in the instruction to the learners' experience and help them to see the relevance.
3. Confidence - Build in learners a positive expectation of success. Make sure that the learning experience helps learners to display competence and success as a result of their efforts and abilities. It should be an achievable rather than overwhelming learning experience.
4. Satisfaction - Encourage and support their intrinsic enjoyment of the learning experience, as well as providing extrinsic rewarding consequences for their successes. Also build a perception of fair treatment. Reinforce the learning by providing useful and fair feedback.
There are many different schools of thought within constructivist theory, all fall within the same basic assumption about learning. The emphasis is placed on the learner or the participant rather than the teacher or the instructor. It is the learner who interacts with objects and events and thereby gains an understanding of the features held by such objects or events. The learner, therefore, constructs his/her own conceptualizations and solutions to problems. Learner autonomy and initiative is accepted and encouraged.
Constructivists view learning as the result of mental construction. Participants learn by fitting new information together with what they already know. People learn best when they actively construct their own understanding. In constructivist thinking, learning is also affected by the context and the beliefs and attitudes of the learner. Learners are encouraged to invent their own solutions and to try out ideas and hypotheses. They are given the opportunity to build on prior knowledge.
Cognitive experiences situated in authentic activities such as project-based learning, cognitive apprenticeships, or case-based learning environments result in richer and more meaningful learning experiences. Social negotiation of knowledge allows a process by which learners form and test their constructs in a dialogue with other individuals and with the larger society. Collaboration becomes a principal focus of learning activities so that negotiation and testing of knowledge can occur.