Learn Instructional Design in a Course that's Online, Asynchronous, Interactive, and Instructor-Facilitated

Yes, we know how to pack adjectives into our work. But, this does describe it well. The course materials are provided in a totally asynchronous format -- we suggest (strongly) each participant follow a day-by-day schedule for completing the work, but you can work as fast you want, or slow down and take your time when you hit a bump (or when life intervenes). The course schedule lasts 10 weeks which includes adequate time for project work. The course is chock full of activities (some award-winning). Most of all, we are there to encourage, counsel, and occasionally, to cajole the very best out of our students. It is a point of personal pride for us to bring students to that special understanding of what instructional design is, what it is not, when it works, and when it is the wrong approach entirely. The course is facilitated by an instructor to keep you on task and motivated. We are there to provide timely feedback especially when things inevitably get a tad confusing.

We also understand that companies may have needs that require alternatives to our standard approach. So, we are willing to discuss with you alternative learning models. For example, most organizations do instructional design in teams, so although our approach is based on individual projects, we can organize the course to have students from your organization complete a team-based instructional design project. If your organization already has instructional design experts that you would like to act as instructors/facilitators in the course, let us know and we'll try to accommodate you. Finally, if you want a low-cost introduction to instructional design, ask us about setting up a non-facilitated course section for you. Although we do not feel this is the best approach to learning, it may be a practical and more economical way for your organization's staff to either get a speedy introduction to instructional design or help others to refresh their understanding or skills acquired elsewhere.

Instructional Design, Pure and Simple

We offer individuals and companies a complete introduction to instructional design based on the ADDIE model:
nalysis, Design, Development, Implementation, Evaluation. We base the course on the Dick, Carey, & Carey textbook, the most well-known and used ID approach in the universe. However, we also bring in the Gagne & Briggs model and theory (our personal favorite), the Smith & Ragan model, and our own distinctive take on instructional design. But, we make sure that all students get, I mean really get, the fundamentals of instructional design. Is there a justification for the costly enterprise of designing instruction? We harp on the need to understand the problem because only instructional problems can be solved with instructional solutions. We put a special focus on understanding learning outcomes (using Gagne's 5 domains). If our students don't understand the difference between concepts, principles, and problem-solving, we feel like we failed. We also view verbal information (facts) as playing a supporting role to intellectual skills. And, don't get us started on performance gaps. Our students know the significance of "what is" vs. "what should be" when it comes to performance.

The course is designed to last 10 weeks, however, participants are able to go more quickly through the course if they are motivated to do so.

Course Goals

Here are the abbreviated course goals:

For a complete list of course topics, take a look at the contents of the textbook used in the course, The Systematic Design of Instruction (6th ed.), by Dick, Carey, and Carey, but here are the highlights:

Course Components

We practice what we preach. The course includes a broad set of instructional design strategies using a diverse set of instructional media, all designed within a meaningful and sensible context. Here is list of the most noteworthy course components, click on each for a sample:

Click on any of these icons for a demonstration


course learning plan logo

A well-organized "course learning plan"

I D A logo

Instructional Design Activities (IDAs): One for each of the major phases of instructional design
Winner of the 2004 AECT Outstanding Practice in the Field of Instructional Design Award.

in search of lost wisdom logo

In Search of Lost Wisdom: Learning about task analysis
Winner of the 2006 AECT Outstanding Practice in the Field of Instructional Design Award.

video orientations

Video orientations of each phase of instructional design (filmed on Lloyd's farm on Nowhere Road in Madison County, Georgia)

audio presentations

Pre-recorded presentations of each chapter of the Dick, Carey, & Carey textbook
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Q and A button

Question & Answer Center: A special communication tool for online learning


What's the Difference between the Course and the Workshop?

The course is a full introduction to instructional design and is based on the course we teach at the University of Georgia. To learn instructional design well, you should take the course. To earn the Apprentice Designer certificate you should figure on spending about 10 hours a week for 7 weeks. Participants then have the option of completing an actual instructional design project which is reviewed by the instructor followed by detailed feedabck given to the participant. Depending on the scope and quality of the project, you can earn the Assistant Designer or Associate Designer certificate.

But, many professionals don't have the time for a full course, or they are looking for a lower cost way to get familiar with instructional design principles (the workshop costs about half as much as the full course). So, we offer a 15-hour instructional design workshop as an alternative. Unlike the full course, you can begin the workshop on almost any date of your choice. You can complete the 15 hours of training anytime within one week of the start date of the workshop.

All workshop activities and resources are also asynchronous, just like the full course, so you set the schedule. Unlike other companies that provide similar workshop experiences on site, your company can avoid costly instructor travel expenses and your employees are not locked into a schedule defined by the trainer. Participants who complete the workshop will receive an Instructional Design Workshop certificate.

The workshop will give you an excellent overview of the entire instructional design process, followed by learning about one instructional design component in more detail of your choice, such as needs assessment, task analysis, course design, lesson design, or evaluation. Like the full course, an online instructor will be available to you throughout your workshop experience to give you feedback and to answer your questions.

Workshop participants are also given full access to all of the course materials for an additional 30 days for self-study and reference.

Of course, your learning expectations should be consistent with a workshop experience. The purpose of the workshop is to familiarize you with the instructional design process and develop introductory skill in at least one area whereas you will develop actual skills in all of the main instructional design processes if you take the full course. Of course, to truly learn instructional design well, you need to use your skills continually and reflectively to solve actual training and learning problems.

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