This past Sunday, I conducted a three-hour Free Instructional Design Orientation session for individuals who wish to map their competencies to Instructional Design. Wavelength organizes these sessions 3 to 4 times a year and they give me an opportunity to understand the nature of questions that baffles many who wish to change their career path or improve their growth prospects by acquiring the knowledge of ID. The most common of these questions is – “How the knowledge of instructional design helps?”
This question originates from the term “instructional design” appearing in the employment advertisements for the professions indicated in the following list.
Let us see how this “set of skills” help:
- Content Writers and Instructional Designers
- Teachers and Other Academicians
- Technical Writers
Let me begin by establishing a contextually relevant definition of instructional design.
“Instructional Design is a set of cognitive skills that enable you to impart learning effectively.”
Content Writers and Instructional Designers:
Content Writers and Instructional Designers often engage in creating learning content for their audience. They use instructional design to ensure that the learning happens fast and stays anchored. Instructional design helps you achieve this effectiveness and efficiency, whether you write content for eLearning or for classroom delivery.
Trainers often create their own training plans and design their training programs in terms of activities, examples, and assessments. Instructional design could equip you with the cognitive psychology principles, and assist you in designing, developing, and implementing more effective training programs.
Teachers and Other Academicians:
Teachers of all disciplines, and at all levels, can apply the instructional design principles to ensure that their audience’s attention doesn’t stray and that the knowledge-transfer happens effectively and efficiently. ID enables you to create a balance between your passion for the subject and the learning needs of your learners.
This group of professionals, engage in creating the “How-To” literature for any product (hardware, software, or any device that operates in a specific manner.) Though as a technical writer you write crisp directions for your users, you can make your content even more relevant, efficient, and easy to understand/apply, if you can apply instructional design.
So, this is how instructional design finds application in the professions outlined above.
Another related question is – “What are the skills that you need to have, if you want to gain the most from the knowledge of instructional design?”
My next post will answer this question. You might want to return in a few days.