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Applying the Kemp Instructional Design model (Morrison, Ross, and Kemp, 2012) to my

identified problem definitely helped to steer me in certain directions in an effort to make sure that
my training activities were as effective as possible. For example, during the Learner
Characteristics phase, I realized that many of my learners would probably bring low levels of
motivation to the training because the process of creating assessment products might not directly
relate to their current work assignments, and that may even make them resentful of having to take
time away from their busy schedules to attend training sessions that they see little value in. In
order to protect against that, I applied motivational theory in deciding to use an introductory
video that shows the very real impact of high-stakes assessments on students and teachers lives.
By showing the participants the real-world need for effective assessment products to help
students succeed in their academic careers, I hoped to make them see that even though they may
not be interested in learning how to build assessment products, they all share an interest in
making a positive difference in the lives of students and teachers. Without this realization, many
of the training activities would not have been effective because the participants would have had
little motivation to learn.
In terms of motivational theories used, I mainly relied on the ARCS theory (Pappas,
2015) because I felt it most succinctly defined the main elements common among the leading
motivational theories, and it also resonated with me as a learner and as a professional. In my
experience, there can be no real satisfaction or increase in confidence resulting from a learning
experience in which my attention is elsewhere or in which I see no relevance. My colleagues are
already inundated with information about high-level company initiatives and a rotating roster of
systems and technologies, which makes it that much more important that they see a real purpose
and value for taking on additional information and training. Without that, I can see how they
would be inclined to just get through the training Ive planned.

The principles of andragogy were also central to my plans for creating engaging content
and interactions for my participants. As adult learners with increasingly busy lives, we not only
need to see the value in a learning or training opportunity, but an immediate value or practical
application. And though I myself personally prefer working on my own to participating in group
work, after considering the fact that my adult learners bring so much valuable experience to the
table, I decided it was crucial to include small group sessions so that the other participants could
share and draw on one anothers experiences even more so than in a more traditional group
presentation format where some may be reluctant to share or may just want to keep the session
moving.
In addition to adult learning theory, I would say that I ascribe to different learning
theories based on the need or problem at hand, but most always in combination. For example,
though it may be considered a somewhat outdated line of thought, behaviorism is still highly
applicable to many types of necessary learning experiences in a persons life. Without some form
of objective evidence, how is a teacher to measure progress, regardless of the cognitive or social
processes involved? That is not to say that cognitive and constructivist theory are less solid
foundations of education and training. We are all complex social beings who are able to reflect
upon our own thinking and motivationsto ignore the why and how of a desired response or
behavior is not just an oversimplification, it is also a wasted opportunity to evaluate the
effectiveness of instruction. But there is no one theory or group of theories that I ascribe to
completely. In fact, if there is one thing Ive taken away from my exposure to a variety of
learning theories in this course, it is that the theories themselves are constantly being evaluated by
the experts in the field, and that careful analysis of a specific problem, of specific learners, and of
specific instructional resources and strategies will almost always require an individually tailored
approach. In that respect, my goal analysis did impact the specific learning theories employed on
the project because it showed me exactly what types of behaviors, responses, or attitudes would
need to be observed in order for me to know whether the objectives had been mastered.

Overall, I feel the instructional design process is invaluable to creating effective


educational and training experiences. So often, I see training opportunities and educational
content and products that have been created without one or more crucial elements of the process
and subsequently require significant time, effort, and cost to be improved upon. For example,
during the unit on front-end analysis, I was embarrassed and saddened to say that in all my years
in educational publishing, Id estimate that less than 25% of the products Ive worked on have
included a thorough front-end analysis of the instructional need. Too often, we design content in
a bubble, writing to prescribed standards without knowledge of our end users. However, there
has been a shift in recent years at my current organization toward incorporation of the ID process
into our new product development plans, and Ive been excited to learn about new user testing
pilots and opportunities for evaluation and revision of our concepts and pedagogy before we offer
a product to the end user. Ive been advocating for similar policies and procedures for years, and
will continue to do so, especially now that Im more confident in my growing instructional design
knowledge base.
One of the most valuable concepts that I learned in this first course was that the
instructional design process, when thoroughly applied to an instructional need, will actually
reveal and prescribe the needed techniques, methods, and modes of delivery of the instruction
itself. Too often we expect educators to work in the opposite directionbeginning with the
instruction and pedagogy without first understanding the multifaceted needs that the instruction is
meant to address. And with an ever-increasing burden on teachers to not only design the
curriculum, raise test scores, provide meaningful feedback and scaffolding, and remain current in
their own understanding of learning theory, educational technology, and district/state
requirements, it is clear that anything we as instructional designers can do to shoulder some of
that burden will be incredibly helpful. Because this insight took hold when I was working on my
enabling objectives matrix, I would have to say that completing the EOM was the most
interesting and rewarding activity of the course.

The greatest impact that the course will have on my instructional design is the advocating
for front-end analyses of every project Im involved in. As I mentioned previously, this step is so
often skipped because of time, money, and/or a lack of recognition of its importance. And Ive
clearly seen how beneficial it is to the instructional design process as a whole. While I know Im
facing an uphill battle in implementing what some may see as a time-consuming and costly step,
Im sure I can justify the expenses, and though I may not be able to immediately change things, at
least I can help move us in the right direction.
The questions and concerns I have about using instructional design are mostly centered
around the need to keep up, both with the current theories and the current technologies. With the
rapid advances in the daily technology that we rely on, surely the way people learn is also
changing, requiring new research and new theoretical practices. For example, I noticed that some
of the readings for the course referred to outdated technologies, and almost nothing we read
spoke to content management systems, learning management systems, MOOCs, or personal
devices such as tablets or smartphones. I think the only reference I can recall to modern
educational technology and its impact on instructional design was the blog post on using Blooms
taxonomy to create Google-proof items. (Sowash, 2009) Also, as someone with an interest in
learning in general, I often read articles about how our personal devices are changing our ability
to focus and avoid distractionsomething that certainly will have an impact on instructional
design in the future. It seems now more than ever its crucial for instructional designers to stay
abreast of the latest research and theory, and Im not sure how well find the time. Fortunately, the
course has also shown me that there is a variety of up-to-date resources and forums for
instructional designers and technologists (e.g., Instructional Design.org, Instructional Design
Central, eLearning Industry, etc.), and that even if there are less concrete answers than Id like, at
least the conversation is active. And, as previously mentioned, my current organization is adding
instructional designers to its permanent staff in increasing numbers, so I will also have some
valuable resources right in the office. Because of that, and because of the connections I hope to

make throughout this certificate program, Im looking forward to building a network of


instructional design professionals with whom I can share experiences and ideas.

References

Clark, D.R. (2004). The Dick and Carey Model 1978. Retrieved from
http://www.nwlink.com/~donclark/history_isd/carey.html
Clark, D.R. (2004). Blooms Taxonomy of Learning Domains: The Cognitive Domain. Retrieved
from http://www.nwlink.com/~donclark/hrd/bloom.html
Kemp Design Model (n.d.). Retrieved February 13, 2016 from
http://www.instructionaldesign.org/models/kemp_model.html
Morrison, G.R., Ross, S.M., Kalman, H.K. (2012) . . . Designing Effective Instruction (7th ed.).
Retrieved from https://reader.texidium.com/dist/#/book/205
Pappas, C. (2015, May 20). The Quintessential Of The ARCS Model of Motivation. Retrieved
from http://elearningindustry.com/arcs-model-of-motivation
Smith, M. K. (1996; 1999, 2010) Andragogy, the encyclopaedia of informal education.
Retrieved from http://infed.org/mobi/andragogy-what-is-it-and-does-it-help-thinkingabout-adult-learning/
Sowash, J. (2009) Google Proof Questioning: a New Use for Blooms Taxonomy [Web log post].
Retrieved from http://electriceducator.blogspot.com/2009/11/google-proof-questioningnew-use-for.html