Instructional Design; What it is. What it isn’t.

Instructional Design is an organized approach to designing, developing, and delivering course content.

Instructional design projects focus on an identified curricular, pedagogical, or assessment problem. This problem frames the design project and informs the project timeline.

Once a design problem has been identified, a team is assembled to address the problem in a series of projects. In a university like La Verne, the faculty or program chair would be the heart of this team as the subject matter expert (SME) however a member of the design team would act as the project lead. Librarians, educational technologists, and other instructional designers would play a role depending on the project.

Instructional design is intensive work which requires time, and expertise. Far more time than most people would recognize. La Verne faculty balance scholarship, teaching, and service. Instructional design requires a significant commitment to a project timeline.

Common Misconceptions

Blackboard means online education…

The Blackboard learning management system is the least important part of designing an online course because it is simply the location of the course materials. An on ground course would not be described by the building or room in which it takes place.
Blackboard or any learning management system are great networks for organizing students and online courses. However, to develop a truly exceptional online course or program, it takes intentional design and navigation.

An online course is a conversion of a traditional course…

Online courses are pedagogically different than on ground courses. Creating an online course which has the same intimate and collaborative environment for which La Verne is applauded relies on careful design and entirely different tools.
Research in online education correlates social presence to retention and completion rates. Developing activities that promote social presence in an online course and are directly tied to the learning outcomes is essential for creating an online course that sets La Verne apart from other online programs.

Instructional Design is essentially uploading and organizing existing content…

Instructional design is the art of crafting clear learning outcomes, aligning those outcomes to authentic course assessments, then developing the course materials and the course activities with a balance that ensures all learners will succeed.

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