instructional design is a process for helping you to create effective learning.
As discussed in the previous lesson (4a), there are many instructional
design approaches and models, usually structured around the five phases
shown at the right. In many instances, it is a matter of choosing a model
that works well for you. By reflecting on the activities in a 'traditional'
analysis phase, this module will help you to think critically about planning
and scoping-out effective e-learning programs.
we really want to do when we begin developing online instruction, is to
clarify its actual purpose. Usually, this includes finding a way to close
the gap between what we think we should teach and what learners are actually
doing. To do this, we need to specifically definine the knowledge, skills
and/or behaviour that they require. In the analysis phase, we assess the
real needs, the learners and the environment. This information will allow
us to write broad goals and learning outcomes, from which we can develop
instruction that will help learners to achieve them. Learning outcomes
are based on workplace performance, or what the learner will be able to
do when the instruction is successfully completed. This phase in the instructional
design process will help youto ask the right questions and make the right
decisions to produce a viable learning product.
NEEDS ASSESSMENT AND GOALS
analysis provides answers to basic questions. What is the purpose of the
course? Is there a real need for instruction, or only a perceived one?
What exactly needs to be learned? There are various ways to get this information,
including surveys, interviews, stakeholder discussions and workplace observations.
General goals describe a broad or abstract intent, state, or condition.
They describe what the goals are for the instructional program and not
the specific behavior or performance of the learner. They may be philosophical
in nature (similar to a vision or mission statement), and describe what
the goals are for the instructional program - but not the specific behavior
or performance of the learner. By creating a list of general goals
and ranking them in order of importance, you can begin to examine how the
goals will be met. Any discrepancies will help you to prioritize the ‘gaps’
- which are actual the instructional needs. Goals that are new are designated
for training and fundamental skills that learners already have are not
The discrepancy between
‘what should be’ and ‘what is’ identifies the need for instruction. Apart
from general goals, analysing the 'gaps' will allow you to write course
goals, which describe the overall purpose and scope of a course and what
knowledge and skills the course is meant to provide (in general terms).
should be - what is + why = needed instruction
questions: Are there problems that need solving through training/education?
Gather and synthesize information to help identify
the problems and create a list of goals to see what is missing so that
you can define what is actually needed.
1) The goal
for this e-learning program is to teach participants how to change a flat
you think about developing the actual instruction, it is helpful to consider
who your learners are. What related skills and knowledge do they have?
What are their perceptions? What is their experience? Where are they located?
What will motivate this particular group to learn this material? How do
these factors influence the instruction required? Answering these and other
similar questions will help you to determine the starting points and methods
needed to further develop the needed instruction.
questions: Who are my learners and what are their attributes?
Compile general research on your learning audience.
training is specifically for taxi drivers in Northern Ontario that have
completed the Introduction to Vehicle Maintenance workshop. Participants
will already have an appreciation for the importance of maintaining their
cab and responding to roadside emergencies.
THE LEARNING ENVIRONMENT
many learners will there be? What facilities will I use? What types of
resources are available? How much time do we have to develop the instruction?
Many of these types of learning environment factors influence instructional
content design decisions. For example, learners may be geographically dispersed,
which may mean that many of them will not be able to attend a traditional
classroom, and would perhaps require an alternative/optional delivery mode.
Surveys are a useful tool for investigating the learners and the learning
questions: What are all of the components that constitute your
Gather and synthesize information on components related
to the learning environment.
survey tool here
available in demo)
in step 1) are broad, general intentions of required changes in knowledge,
skills and/or attitudes. They deal with the big picture in specifying overall
competencies or outputs that you expect from your learners.
easy way to remember these components is to use the acronym: A
B C D
are more defined than goals, in that they describe the behavior or performance
that the learner will be able to exhibit to meet the goal. Learning outcomes
can also be referred to as learning objectives. Without learning outcomes,
it would be virtually impossible to design and deliver effective education!
Learning outcomes provide the framework for the development of lesson plans
and other training materials. Importantly, they also tell your learners
exactly what you are trying to accomplish, and what is expected of them.
format known to work for stating clear learning outcomes includes four
will be doing the behaviour or performance?
should the learner be able to do?
what conditions do you want the learner to be able to do it?
well must it be done?
who it is that will be doing the performance (not the instructor).
the learner will be able to do. It is important to use verbs that indicate
observable and measurable learning activities. Refer to the quick tutorial
Bloom’s Taxonomy' in the resource section for some examples of useful
verbs in the cognitive domain.
learner] [will be able to create a curricular-based
the conditions you will impose when learners are demonstrating their mastery
of the outcome.
What will the learners be allowed to use?
What won't the learners be allowed to use?
Under what conditions must the mastery of skill occur?
learner] [will be able to create a curricular-based Web page] [using
the X, Y and Z programs vailable in the ed-lab]
degree/criterion is the standard by which performance is evaluated. The
communication power of an objective increases when you tell the learners
how well the behaviour (performance) must be done. Common degrees include
speed, accuracy and quality.
learner] [will be able to create a curricular-based Web page] [using
the X, Y and Z programs available in the ed-lab]
[that is engaging and meets the learning outcomes
of lesson 12 ].
needs to do what, when and how well = learning outcomes
questions: What are the behaviors or performances that the learner
will be able to exhibit in accordance with your goals?
Create learning outcome statements that meet your goal(s).
A learning outcome or objective is a statement
of the intended outcome of the instruction, and not the actual process
of the instruction itself. These types of objectives describe what
the learners will be able to do in relationship to your goals at the end
of the instruction. However, to help further develop
instruction, we can think about the more specific tasks that our learners
will have to perform. This is known as task analysis. Terminal
objectives address the elements, skills, and knowledge required to
support a task. Enabling objectives are even more specific about
each step or sub-task. Instructors can develop task analysis in a number
perform the activity
yourself and note the steps.
observe or video tape
others who are successfully performing the steps.
think through the activity
while noting the steps.
use or adapt task analyses
from other sources.
These types of
exercises will ensure that you include all of the components learners will
need to achieve meaningful learning outcomes. The tasks may be procedural
- as in analyzing what to do next, or sequential - as in one ordered step
at a time. There may be a number of steps required to meet each
learning outcome. For example, changing a tire can represent a learning
outcome with several steps. We can refer to these steps as sub-tasks or
objectives. Enabling objectives are based on terminal objectives,
and are very specific and measurable.
steps or sub-tasks involved in changing a tire from which learning objectives
of scalar diagram ensures that each supporting element - components and
sub-components - are considered for training. Sequencing or organizing
your objectives can take advantage of the relationships within the subject
and reduce the time needed to meet the objectives. Sequencing of these
objectives may also help to establish the order in which instruction will
be organized and presented.
objectives/enabling objectives = 1 learning outcome/objective
What are the actual steps and tasks that need to be
performed in order to meet each learning outcome?
each sub-task to determine whether the learners will need instruction in
order to perform it. Separate the 'need to know' from the 'nice to know'.
Group the sub-tasks according to importance and their relation to each
other. Write a brief learning objective for each sub-task.
1) Terminal objective:
jack placement diagram from the manual, participants will be able to 'jack
up the car' high enough so that there is 5 inches of ground clearance from
2) Enabling Objectives:
the owner's manual, participants will be able to identify all parts of
the jack with 100% accuracy.
b) Given the owner's
manual and parts of the jack, participants will be able to assemble the
jack within 5 minutes time and with 100% accuracy.
all instructional design phases are important, the analysis phase may be
the most critical. It helps to define and focus the real need for the e-learning
program, and lays out the ground work for all subsequent activities. Creating
learning outcomes from your general goal(s) can help you to perform a task
analysis. Terminal and enabling objectives can help you to sequence the
instruction in the program.
on to the Introduction
to Design section of this module. Here we will begin to examine various
strategies for matching objectives to various e-learning design and delivery
2001, Michael Shaw, michaelshaw.ca