Over the past decade, the instructional design domain has seen huge growth and development. From small companies to large conglomerates, everyone is benefitting from instructional design. Over the course of time, we have seen a rise in a variety of systems, methodologies, and structures that are designed to help expedite good learning practices.
Our expanding knowledge of human psychology and technological advancements have forced these models to shift and develop at a pace. We are about to explore the history of instructional designing in-depth. Before we do this, however, let's understand what exactly instructional designing is.
What is instructional designing?
Instructional designing involves designing, developing, and delivery of learning experiences. In instructional designing, these learning experiences in such a way that participants acquire either knowledge or skills. Instructional designers follow numerous academic theories and models related to how people learn and the cognitive processes behind the learning experience. These models make sure the instructions are as impactful as possible for bestowing knowledge or teaching skills to participants.
What is a learning experience?
A learning exercise can refer to anything from teachers in the classroom, to online courses, instructional handbooks, PowerPoint presentations, and simulations. It involves any experience where the purpose is for learning of any kind to take place.
Instructional designers are recognized as the “architects” of learning practices. In both the educational and corporate settings, they often serve as directors and project managers of the course/lesson development process.
Putting it simply, instructional designing is a method relating to the design of instructional experiences. But there is a lot more to it than just that. According to Robert Reiser, "Instructional design is defined as a systematic process that is employed to develop education and training programs consistently and reliably".
Instructional designing has a long and recognized history, dating back to the 1940s.
Instructional design methodology has evolved a lot over the last 70 years.
Technology has become more advanced and our perception of human behaviour has advanced. Instructional designers have reshaped and modernized their designing strategies. What is perhaps more remarkable, however, is how long-lasting many instructional design approaches have proven to be.
Bloom's Taxonomy was first postulated in 1956. Kirkpatrick developed his four-level training evaluation model in 1959. Nine Levels of Learning developed by Gagne were first set down in 1965. Instructors utilize these three theories even today. The US Army popularised ADDIE in the 1970s and it is still the most popular instructional design structure.
Even so, the time definitely seems right for an instructional design shake-up. Just as World War II presented a spark for instructional designers to spring into being, perhaps the global crisis created by the COVID-19 pandemic will expedite a similar change. Instructional designers could not be better placed to respond to our learning needs in the 'new normal' we arrive in. The history of instructional designing has already been written, but the future is up for grabs.
Instructional Design in the Modern Workplace
In the frame - Soniya Murhe , Writer / Techinical Content Creator