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The Learning Systems Design and Development Competencies (Artifact Description):


Instructional Systems Design

Artifact (Click on the link below to download):

Virtual Mentoring for Sustained Support


Artifact Description:

My final project was a group project. We designed an Instructional Design plan for a Virtual Mentoring Training Program. The subject matter we chose was a challenge in that we took a traditionally face-to-face activity and developed training that would enable someone to practice it in the virtual world. It was also a perfect one for constructive learning and collaborative work. The nature of a virtual mentoring program requires the student to learn alongside someone. In addition, it provides a skill that will be helpful in performance support. Our learning module was built to equip experienced professionals to mentor others, thus providing them the training to be the proper support the inexperienced professional needs.


We started with a project proposal, which set our general direction, defined our intended audience, established member roles, and enabled the team to grasp a common vision. The plan was comprehensive. It included:

  • Broad Goals
  • Needs Assessment and Instruments
  • Learner Analysis
  • Contextual Analysis
  • Task Analysis
  • Learning Objectives
  • Types of Learning Experiences and Instructional Strategies
  • Formative and Summative Evaluation Plans and Data Collection Methods
  • Materials for the Training Program
  • Implementation Plan

Given the size of the plan and the time we had to create it, we divided up responsibilities in pairs for most of the plan but worked as a group on larger sections. We used Google Docs so all of our work would be online and accessible to the entire team. This enabled each member to contribute or comment on sections they weren’t assigned to if they felt the need or saw something going awry. It also allowed us to work both synchronously and asynchronously. The sections I worked on with the group or as a pair were:

  • Needs Assessment (pair)
  • Task Analysis (group)
  • Learning Objectives (pair)
  • Materials for Training Program (group)
  • Formative Evaluation (pair)
  • Summative Evaluation (pair)

In addition, I contributed my experience in graphic design to create our logo and border designs for a cohesive look to our training.


Reflection:

The Instructional Systems Design course was the perfect class to have near the end of my program. My previous courses in the program were like pieces of the puzzle of instructional design. We examined each of them until we were familiar with every curve and cut of the piece or pieces we were studying. But this course gathered all the parts and taught us how to fit it together to build a complete picture of designing a learning environment.


We weren’t able to implement our plan, but did learn how each part of the process works together. According to Morrison, “The instructional design process requires attention to both a systematic procedure and specificity for treating details within the plan…Each part of the process depends on one or more earlier tasks to design appropriate instruction” (Morrison, Ross, Kalman & Kemp, 2011, p. 10). The development of our plan gave me the opportunity to experience this truth in instructional design and further develop the skills needed for this competency.


Our project did lack one aspect of the instructional design process: a subject matter expert. The group had to spend a considerable amount of time in the beginning of the process researching our subject, because of our lack of a SME to consult. We quickly caught up so it didn’t hinder our development. But, I would have liked to have gained more experience working with an SME during the design and development phase of instruction. Thankfully I did experience this type of working relationship in an earlier learning module in the course and in another class: Learning and Task Analysis.


Overall, the final project was a valuable part of my development as an instructional designer. We also received a perfect score for our plan and a request to use it as an example for future students of the class.





References:

Morrison, G. R., Ross, S. R., Kalman, H. K., & Kemp, J. E. (2011). Designing Effective Instruction. Hoboken, NJ: John Wiley & Sons, Inc.



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