Chapter 1: Introduction to Instructional Design

Here are the specific things that I highlighted when reading chapter 1 of Dick & Carey.

“a more productive approach is to view e-learning—and indeed, all purposeful teaching and learning—as systematic processes in which every component is crucial to successful learning.”

“A system is technically a set of interrelated parts, all of which work together toward a defined goal. The parts of the system depend on each other for input and output, and the entire system uses feedback to determine if its desired goal has been reached.”

“the instructional process itself can be viewed as a system whose purpose is to bring about learning. The components of the system are the learners, the instructor, the instructional materials, and the learning environment, all interacting to achieve the goal.”

“If student achievement is not satisfactory, then components must be modified to make the system more effective and bring about the desired learning outcomes.”

This is interesting as it provides an example of how something could be a student assessment as well as a formative evaluation of the instruction.

“The purpose of this book is to describe a systems approach for the design, development, implementation, and evaluation of instruction. This is not a physical system, such as home heating and air conditioning, but a procedural system. We describe a series of steps, all of which receive input from preceding steps and provide output for the next steps. All components work together to either produce effective instruction or, if the system evaluation component signals a failure, determine how instruction can be improved.”

“Although our model of instructional design is referred to as a systems approach model, we must emphasize that there is no single systems approach model for designing instruction. A number of models bear the label systems approach, and all share most of the same basic components. The systems approach model presented in this book is less complex than some, but incorporates the major components common to all models, including analysis, design, development, implementation, and evaluation. Collectively, these design models and the processes they represent are referred to as instructional systems development (ISD). Instructional design (ID) is used as an umbrella term that includes all phases of the ISD process. These terms all become clear as you begin to use the instructional design process.”

“Throughout this text, we define the term instruction quite broadly as purposeful activity intended to cause, guide, or support learning.”

“Constructivism is a relatively recent branch of cognitive psychology that has influenced the thinking of many instructional designers. Although constructivist thinking varies broadly on many issues, the central point is the view of learning as a unique product “constructed” by each individual learner combining new information and experiences with existing knowledge. Individuals learn by constructing new mental representations of the social, cultural, physical, and intellectual environments in which they live. Because learning in the constructivist view is so entwined with personal experiences, a primary role of the teacher is creating appropriate learning environments—that is, social or technological contexts in which student learning is based on interactions with authentic representations of real practices.”

“Throughout this text, readers will find predominately a cognitivist view of teaching and learning, but will also see elements of constructivist thinking adapted as appropriate for the varieties of learners, learning outcomes, learning contexts, and performance contexts that are discussed.”

You may find yourself asking why this course and other courses in the instructional design program don’t feel like courses designed using this method of instructional design. This is largely because most courses on this program I designed based upon a socio-constructivist worldview.

“Although some instructional theorists may question the model as forcing practices counter to their philosophical foundations, the authors counsel an open-minded view and believe that most instructional design practices advocated in the model, when used by expert professionals, are essentially neutral.”

“The Dick and Carey Model is only a representation of practices in the discipline of instructional design. The purpose for the model is to help you learn, understand, analyze, and improve your practice of the discipline, but all models are oversimplified representations. As you grow in understanding, don’t confuse the representation with the reality. The graphical arrangement of boxes and arrows, for example, implies a linear process flow, but any experienced instructional designer will attest that in practice, the process can sometimes look more like the circular, continuous improvement model in Figure 1.1 or the concurrent processes model in Figure 1.2 that is useful when planning, development, implementation, and revision all occur at the same time or in multiple cycles of simultaneous activities.”

“Identify Instructional Goal(s)
The first step in the model is to determine what new information and skills you want learners to have mastered when they have completed your instruction, expressed as goals.”

“Conduct Instructional Analysis
After you have identified the instructional goal, you determine step by step what people are doing when they perform that goal as well as look at subskills needed for complete mastery of the goal. The final step in the instructional analysis process is to determine what skills, knowledge, and attitudes, known as entry skills, are needed by learners to be successful in the new instruction.”

“Analyze Learners and Contexts
In addition to analyzing the instructional goal, there is a parallel analysis of the learners, the context in which they learn the skills, and the context in which they use them. Learners’ current skills, preferences, and attitudes are determined along with the characteristics of the instructional setting and the setting in which the skills will eventually be used.”

Note that this is a parallel step, it’s a bit confusing the order in which it is presented. I personally find that I need understand the context in order to even write the goals.

“Write Performance Objectives
Based on the instructional analysis and the description of entry skills, you write specific statements of what learners will be able to do when they complete the instruction.”

“Develop Assessment Instruments
Based on the objectives you have written, you develop assessments that are parallel to and that measure the learners’ ability to perform what you describe in the objectives.”

This is a form of backwards design, where you designed the test before you designed the instruction.

“Develop Instructional Strategy
Based on information from the five preceding steps, a designer identifies a theoretically based strategy to use in the instruction to achieve the goal that emphasizes components to foster student learning”

What’s included in the list below is very much based upon a cognitive understanding of learning.

“Develop and Select Instructional Materials
In this step, the instructional strategy is used to produce the instruction, and typically includes guidance for learners, instructional materials, and assessments”

“Design and Conduct Formative Evaluation of Instruction
Following completion of a draft of the instruction, a series of evaluations is conducted to collect data used to identify problems with the instruction or opportunities to make the instruction better, called formative because its purpose is to help create and improve instructional processes and products.”

You might be familiar with the term beta, as in a product being in beta.

“Revise Instruction
The final step in the design and development process (and the first step in a repeat cycle) is revising the instruction.”

“Among the reasons that systematic approaches to instructional design are effective is the required focus, at the outset, on what learners are to know or be able to do when the instruction is concluded.”

“A systems approach to instruction is a powerful tool for planning successful standards-based education because of the tight alignment among learning outcomes, student characteristics, instructional activities, and assessments.”

“A second reason for using the systems approach is the interlocking connection between each component, especially the relationship between instructional strategy and desired learning outcomes. Instruction specifically targeted on the skills and knowledge to be learned helps supply the appropriate conditions for these learning outcomes. Stated another way, the instructional range of activities cannot be loosely related or unrelated to what is to be learned.”

Aka focus which is especially important when you’re designing for workplace learning.

“The third and perhaps most important reason for using the systems approach is that it is an empirical and replicable process.”

I’m particularly challenged by this premise, as it’s based upon the belief that the mind is an empty vessel in which knowledge could be poured into, and doesn’t truly take into account for learner differences.

“The systems approach is an outcomes-based approach to instruction because it begins with a clear understanding of the new knowledge and skills that students will learn.”

“it is the analysis process and the instructional strategies, rather than the delivery mode, that determine instructional success.”

“The reader should be careful to distinguish between the process of designing instruction and the delivery of that instruction.”

“As you study the instructional design model and perhaps use it to design specific instruction, you will find that it takes both time and effort. If you are a teacher, you may find yourself saying, “I could never use this process to prepare all my instruction,” and you would probably be correct. The individual instructor with day-to-day instructional responsibilities can use the complete process to develop only small amounts of instruction at any given time because of the level of detail included in each step.”

I think this is a poor example, because of the no individual teacher because it is too cumbersome, but you also don’t design a lot of your own material, you draw upon curriculum that is created by others, and that curriculum is created by instructional designers.

“I think this is a poor example, because of the no individual teacher because it is too cumbersome, but you also don’t design a lot of your own material, you draw upon curriculum that is created by others, and that curriculum is created by instructional designers.”

“In contrast to the teacher who may be working alone, the ID professional sometimes works with a team of specialists to develop the instruction, often including a content specialist, an instructional technologist, an evaluation specialist, and a manager (who is often the instructional designer).”


Icon for the Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial 4.0 International License

Foundations of Instructional Design by Rebecca J. Hogue is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial 4.0 International License, except where otherwise noted.

Share This Book