The Pocket Guide To Instructional Design: Merging Data, Science, And Social Knowledge To Develop Modern Online Training

instructional design guide

How can Instructional Designers use analytical tools to improve elearning design? In this guide to instructional design, we share 6 tips to merge data, science, and social knowledge to develop modern online training.

6 Ways To Develop Modern Online Training Content 

The world Instructional Designers inhabit isn’t like the rest. It’s a complex place where we bring together technology and the science of the brain. We aren’t concerned with the newest, the shiniest, the most exciting. What we are interested in is carefully selecting design elements along with considering User Experience and relevant online training content. We create stories, characters, and spaces for the imagination. So, what are the best ways to target specific corporate groups? How can you use the analytical online training resources at your disposal to create an immersive piece of design? Here are 6 tips on merging analytical tools with the best Instructional Design elements.

1. Survey And Assess Employees To Identify Their Motivations And Learning Habits

Effective, modern online training courses start with an understanding of the employee’s position. Have they studied this online training content before? Are they proficient in this skillset, but need to learn a new approach or technique? There are many different ways to identify learning goals for a group of employees. The most straightforward is using an online survey, but you could also use focus groups or eLearning feedback from previous related online training courses. Your aim is to compile a set of learning objectives for your modern online training, which will be challenging and inspiring for every corporate learner.

2. Be Aware Of The Latest Trends And Technologies And Use Them Sparingly

Sometimes, your client will ask you to use a particular design feature because it’s popular. Make it your job to know what the current Instructional Design trends are, and have this information at your fingertips. Educate your stakeholders to understand that what’s important are learning preferences, not fashions. If necessary, suggest a different technique that would work better for those specific employees. Don’t be tempted to focus solely on the capabilities of the eLearning authoring tools you have available. Learning technology is an enabler, a means to provide a tailored, engaging online training experience. You can’t decide on the technology first, and the online training content and structure later. Start from the perspective of where you are now, and where you want to get to, then decide how to get there.

3. Target The Memory

eLearning science tells us that online training content that reaches the employee’s memory is more likely to be embedded. In practice, this means that we need to provoke a feeling of relatedness in them. That they have experienced something similar in the past to what is being taught. Can you use examples from school or other major events like planning a wedding or the birth of a child? Create online training content that draws a comparison to a past memory. Use your online survey or focus group data to inspire possible cross-experience.

4. Let LMS Data Inspire Your Visual And Interactive Elements

LMS and online training course data give us the opportunity to mine for gold. Make treasure hunting a regular part of your Instructional Design process. What can you learn from online assessment scores? Perhaps, there is a pattern that shorter, microlearning-based materials lead to higher pass rates. Maybe, a certain set of employees responds brilliantly to online training simulations. Look at online training course data. Do corporate learners get put off at a certain point and abandon the online training course? What is it about the eLearning course design that is disengaging them? Take the opportunity to learn from past mistakes. Set up a list of rules, do’s and don’ts of design for each distinct group or subject matter. Don’t forget to consider whether the online assessments themselves are causing the issue. Would games and quizzes lead to better understanding and higher scores?

5. Factor-In Demographics, Backgrounds, And Experience Levels

Culture, experience, and societal beliefs play a crucial role in the eLearning development process. This social knowledge gives you the ability to create online training courses that speak to employees on a personal level and address their needs. Without resorting to a one-size-fits-all approach or, even worse, offending their belief system. You may not be able to demand that they disclose personal information due to data protection laws. However, you can encourage them to share their eLearning feedback and cultivate a culture of open communication. They can shed light on aspects of the online training program that make them feel isolated. Or recommend online training resources that align with their experience levels and professional backgrounds.

6. Delve Into Mind Matters That Govern The Learning Process

Instructional Designers must also have a fair amount of psychological know-how. You need to know how and why corporate learners process information, as well as why they’re participating in the first place. For online training, many online training courses may be mandatory, which takes care of the ‘why’ component. But you must still delve into mind matters to create meaningful, modern online training content and engage them on a deeper level. Attend conferences and workshops. Join social media and networking groups to learn as much as possible about educational psychology. And survey your corporate learners to step inside their minds and find out what makes them tick.

Instructional Design can have a huge impact on the way an organization learns together, behaves and grows in skills. Instructional Designers are in the unique position of bringing together data, scientific research, content experts and technology. That’s important because one thing influences another. The more we analyze user and online training course data, the more we tailor the technology available to deliver a better online training experience. And the closer we work with the right people, the more we bring a scientific approach to expressing modern online training content through careful design. Decisions based on sound analytics are always the best decisions. Online training informed by learner experience and preference promotes successful adoption rates. To truly gain from Instructional Design, create a development approach that considers the corporate learner in tandem with the best available techniques.

Are you interested in Instructional Design but don’t know where to start? Are you an Instructional Designer looking for inspiration? Download eLearning Industry’s guide to instructional design careers with the free eBook How To Kick Start And Boost An Amazing Instructional Design Career to discover everything you need to know, from tips on how to design engaging and enlightening eLearning courses to reference books to add to your library and Instructional Design Theories and Models you need to familiarize yourself with.

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The Pocket Guide To Instructional Design: Merging Data, Science, And Social Knowledge To Develop Modern Online Training