Saturday, November 16, 2013

The second phase of the instructional design process: the design

Engineers create a blueprint before undertaking any construction project. Similarly the instructional designer creates a "design blueprint" or "course architecture" before physically creating a course. This phase is the second phase of the ADDIE process defined in the previous post. It is the planning phase of a course and requires brainstorming and creative thinking. The course design blueprint includes a course map, lesson event strategies and treatments, graphical user interface design, assessment plan and storyboard. The following steps are used in this phase:
Step 1: Refine Course Scope and Strategy
Step 2: Create Course Map
Step 3: Define Project Style Guide
Step 4: Design Lesson Strategies, Events and Practices
Step 5: Plan Evaluation Strategy
Step 6: Design Storyboard and layout screens.

Refine Course Scope and Strategy

In this step one focuses on the goal of the course. One reduces the content to some specific topics and some particular aspects of a topic or topics.

This step consists in two tasks: Reduction of topics and organization of  the overall teaching strategy.

Reduction of topics

This task consists in reducing the topics of the course and organizing them in sequence or putting them in a certain order. One can assimilate this organization to a table of contents. The content is set according to the objectives and tasks. The content is arranged according to some guidelines: general to specific, frequency (first skills used first), simple to complex or logical sequence.

Organization of the overall teaching strategy

This task contains the following components:
1. Have a  clear idea of the objectives of the course. One can check the objectives set previously
2. Define the strategies to help students learn. These strategies and learning events depend on the content topics and objectives. Not all events and strategies are introduced in a lesson. These strategies are divided in : pre-instructional events, instructional events. Strategies are set for each objective.

Pre-instructional events help focus on the overview of your topic. They set up all the events that follow.
a. Gain attention. Can be motivational. State a problem to solve. A dramatic statement or question. Show a real object, a model, a video.
Use actions (a demonstration, a song, quotation, a survey of learner’s opinions, some gimmick or unexpected event).
b. Tell or show what is expected (the objectives)
c. Remind them of things they already know about the new topic or task. Make a bridge to your message & the learners’experience.
Instructional events (decide how much to do with students and in what sequence). Decide the scope of each activity. Sequence the events.
a. Present new knowledge, skills, and attitudes. Work with only 3- 5 key messages or new steps in each lesson.
b. Provide guided learning (interactive), such as: practice, examples, nonexamples, embedded assessment, questions and answers,
analogies, demonstrations, presentations, discussions, interviews, games, role playing, scavenger hunts, and application exercises.
Give frequent examples to help students visualize what you mean. Give tips and summaries often.
Follow-through events
a.  Summarize learning points (use a dramatic statement that sums up your key messages)
b. Final lesson assessment (students will act and respond to quizzes, questions, problems to solve, projects and worksheets to complete

3. Break the instruction into manageable pieces incorporating objectives and strategies
4. Putting these pieces in a logical order as follows:
  • Introduction, motivation, attention getting, review
  • Statement of objectives
  • Learning activity
  • Summary
  • Assessments. Assessments can also include non conventional forms: portfolio, projects, reflections, etc.
(To be continued)

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