Instruction for Client Project
1. Choose a Client
The client is someone who has an educational problem to solve. Your client might be a teacher in a K-12 school, a university professor or someone in business or industry. You will work with your client to clearly identify: who the training will be for (the target audience), the conditions under which the instruction will take place and what changes your client expects as a result of the instruction.
2. Choose a Topic for Instruction
The topic should address a specific educational need. Describe the importance and need for the instruction. The term education is interpreted in a broad sense and might include:
3. Describe the Target Audience
This description of the target audience should be a common sense interpretation of the target audience's abilities, motivations and learning styles. The people who will read your description will be making decision about the appropriateness of the instruction for the learners that they have in mind. The description should be readable but comprehensive enough to show that you have a clear idea of the challenges that you face in assisting the learners in developing the necessary skills and understandings.
Some learner characteristics that you might consider include:
4. Describe General Goals and Performance Objectives
Describe the overall goals as well as more specific performance objectives. Consider the inclusion of at least some sub-goals that address affective or motivational factors that will allow the learners to see the value of what they are learning. Each performance objective should include:
List the Sources for Instructional Goals
Your primary source for instructional goals is your client, but you may be required to assist your client in specifying and rationalizing the instructional goals. Appropriate sources for instructional goals include:
5. Field Trials
The rapid prototyping approach to instruction design assumes that, despite extensive planning, the perfect design is unlikely to emerge in the first iteration. The field trial component is a critical aspect of the design process that is not complete until the instructional design reliably achieves the stated goals. With the advent of computer-based instructional programs, the field trials are beginning to be classified in two general phases: Alpha testing which is conducted while the overall design is in flux (features are being changed or added) and beta testing that is conducted once the features are fixed.
Alpha testing begins when the designer believes that the instruction has addressed most of the goals and that the insights gained from user feedback will be more valuable than the effort expended in conducting the trials.
Alpha testing often begin by drawing on the experience of experts who understand the instructional goals and the abilities of the target audience. The expert might be someone who has recently mastered the instructional goals or, ideally, someone who has experience in teaching the target audience. This phase of alpha testing may be conducted when the instruction is still emerging. The designer often "demonstrates" the basic features and flow of the instruction while seeking the experts' opinions.
Alpha tests are often followed by beta tests. The assumption is that the instructional product is still incomplete but the "features" of the program are fixed. Beta testing should be conducted in settings which reflect the anticipated conditions under which the instruction will be used.
896 Seminar in Theory of Educational Technology | Ed Tech