Don’t Forget, Instructional Design Is About Problem Solving

In this EduCause Review blog postCamille Dickson-Deane (Educational/Instructional Design Consultant at the University of Melbourne) and Tutaleni I. Asino (Assistant Professor of Educational Technology at Oklahoma State University) offer a quick refresher on the origins of instructional design, which is especially valuable because the demand for what we do is increasing. As Kyle Peck reminds us, “a ‘perfect storm’ of forces both within and outside education are about to accelerate the evolution of learning and learning design, increasing the demand for well-prepared learning designers, learning-related tool builders, and learning-related researchers.” The importance of employing those who design instruction has risen exponentially.

CoP Note: Adult learning theory suggests that problem solving, especially that which connects with current or prior learner experiences, is among the most effective methods for teaching adult and nontraditional learners (see Knowles, 1975, among other resources). Adult pedagogues are right to ask about the kinds of instructional designs that will be most effective for adult learners. This post doesn’t provide the answers as they relate to adult learner, but it does provide questions to ask and approaches to take that can help teachers develop successful instructional designs.

Daniel Hocutt

Web Manager and Adjunct Professor of English for the University of Richmond School of Professional & Continuing Studies.