Instructional Design Models

ISD ProcessMany times in my experience, management has approached my team to give them a training objective.  Many times, these objectives are set up with little information, a short timeline, and minimal understanding of the purpose of the training.  The first step to any successful training class is buy-in from management and accurate information to make the objective of a training clear.  We will talk about management buy-in in a later blog post.  Once this information is gathered, instructional designers and trainers can utilize many tools to help them design and implement trainings.

In a professional business environment, instructional designers use a number of models to design and construct their classes.  These models can help an instructor to put together a solid class and to keep their tasks in order.  There are many models that have been designed over the years, and some are better than others.  Richard Culatta provides a list and description of some of the more commonly used models.  Here, we will be looking at a few models in review, but one model is of particular interest.

ADDIE is a model typically used by training developers and business process trainers.  The basic steps of the model determine how a trainer should go about setting up, designing, and implementing a training class.  In reality, most trainers go through this process, although unofficially and it may not include all of the steps detailed in the model.  Those primary steps are defined in categories in order of the acronym: Analysis, Design, Develop, Implementation, Evaluation.  Each of these phases has individual steps involved and can be broken down into tasks and required information.  We will get into these steps individually with our future blog posts.

Another model of instructional design is ARCS.  John Keller created this model to facilitate learner motivation.  We talked about motivation in the last blog post, but this model puts a structure underneath the concept.  As we said, motivation is key to having a successful class.  ARCS provides a framework of concepts to motivate learners in a class, ranging from attention (A), relevance (R), confidence (C), and satisfaction (S).  Keller’s paper from Florida State University details more on each step of motivation.

Whatever model you choose to use in your instructional design, it is important to keep a structure in place to make your job as easy as possible.  Utilizing a model for training design will also help you to keep tasks in line, help you to meet deadlines, and to make your trainings more successful.  Since we’ll be talking about the ADDIE model in detail, subscribe to my blog to learn about it!  It should be helpful to all of the trainers out there.

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