During the week of March 22-26 I'm taking the Roadtrip to Orlando Florida to participate in the eLearning Guild's Learning Solutions (formerly Annual Gathering) Conference. Cammy Bean, VP Learning at Kineo and I are going to be co-hosting a session on Tuesday 23 March as part of the Guild's eLearning Foundations Intensive. We'll be exploring the topic of how instructional design for the classroom differs from instructional design in elearning. (Yes, we were both a little surprised by that title, too. But then we got it...)
And then Friday morning 26 March Cammy Bean, Koreen Olbrish (CEO of Tandem Learning) and I are going to be sharing what we have learned about New Skills for IDs. Now, in the spirit of true disclosure, none of the skills that I see being demanded of today's IDs are particularly new. But I have come to realize that some of the choices one makes about which skill one chooses to develop has a lot to do with where one ends up spending one's professional time. And that, IMHO, makes this a topic worth talking about.
Cammy, Koreen and I share a deep interest in Instructional design for technology-mediated learning. Each one of us comes at our elearning/design practices from different perspectives, experiences and professional training, but it's interesting to see how in spite of those difference we all speak the same language of ID.That is a very good thing about the systematic processes that seem to shape elearning practice, if you think about eLearning in a "big tent" kind of way.
But OMG ID practitioners love to fuss about the models we use to articulate and share our unique brand of workflow management!!! VERY strong emotions about the process models used to represent the process of ID. Why, just earlier today there was a momentary bit of Friday madness via Twitter with some of my favorite eLearning tweeters - Gina Minks (@ginaminks), Cammy Bean (@cammybean), Koreen Olbrish (@koreenoldbrish), Aaron Silvers (@mrch0mp3rs), Brent Schlenker (@bschlenker), Chad Udell (@visualrinse), Dick Carlson (@techherding) about our favorite ID girlfriend, ADDIE!!
You Remember ADDIE, right? The Analyze, Design, Develop, Implement, Evaluate ADDIE that has become the quintessential visual representation of Instructional Design practice? Even if many IDs themselves roll their eyes when this acronym is mentioned. Because it's not like we really hate it...it's just that it is NOT a learning model. It is not even really a design model. It is most certainly a process workflow model. And most of those of us who call ourselves IDs already know how our work flows.
(Parenthetically - I think that the description of ADDIE that currently sits on Wikipedia needs some work. Just in case anyone here wants to take a shot at a revision.)
So I've been giving far less thought to process and workflow, and far more thought to competencies and skills. When I think about how instructional design skills tend to be taught we sorta pretend to follow the ADDIE model or some analogue thereof. And I've noticed that our various personal iterations of models like ADDIE typically reflect the environments in which we work. That suggests that the notion of a one-size-fits-all workflow, except at the most conceptual of levels, really doesn't hold up very well.
Cammy and I have been spending a fair amount of time lately looking at ID job descriptions to see if our workflow process models and the public expectations of what folks like us are supposed to be able to do are aligned. We're finding that the job descriptions tend to cluster essential skills in a framework that looks a bit more like this:
This is all I really want to say about the sessions for now. Except to tell you that I really have been giving very serious thought to how to bring the Pecha Kucha ID video smackdown challenge I've issued to Jane Bozarth, Clark Quinn, Janet Clarey, Tim Martin and several others to life in this session. Wayne Hodgins has given me a crash course on the fine points of Pecha Kucha, and I expect that we will have a demo of such.
No doubt we will have some fun ways sharing some of the things we've learned. Please take a look at Cammy's blog if you'd like to contribute to this conversation - and of course feel free to post a comment or note if you have things to say to me directly.