2 Introduction to Instructional Design

This chapter contains a brief overview of what instructional designers do. At this point in time, you may be unfamiliar with some of the terminology used. Take a moment to write down any terms you do not understand. As you work through the process of learning instructional design, you can check off the unfamiliar terms as you learn more about them.


One term you will hear a lot within instructional design is ADDIE, which stands for Analysis, Design, Develop, Implement, Evaluate. This book is structured around ADDIE. Although ADDIE is talked about as a linear process, in many instructional design methods it is not linear, rather the design involves cycles, with each with each instructional design model adapting ADDIE to its specific context.

ADDIE is often referred to as an instructional design model, but it isn’t specifically a model, rather it is a generic term that is used when referring to traditional instructional systems design (ISD). From my experience, I find that all instructional design models contain each of the five elements. The models just describe the different ways in which these elements apply.

I’ve created two infographics for your reference. The first is of the different activities that occur in the various ADDIE phases, and the second is a list of typical tools used in each phase (click image for larger version).


Instructional design models

Instructional design models describe different approaches to designing and developing instruction. There are many different models, and most of what is done in practice is a hybrid of several models, depending on the needs of the organization.

Here is a list of different models you can explore. Notice how they each contain the ADDIE components.

What does an instructional designer do?

Stefanie Erika does an excellent job of describing the basics of what an instructional designer does in the following YouTube video:

Explore – What do instructional designers do?

This explore interactive allows you to work through the exploration and take your own notes. Once you get to the last page of this interactive you will be able to export your answers into a Microsoft Word document.

Your responses will be lost when you refresh your browser window. I recommend that you download your word file before moving onto another task.


If you have access to LinkedIn Learning there is an excellent course called Instructional Design Essentials: Models of ID by Joe Pulichino.


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