I've been working as an instructional designer in the corporate training and e-learning field since the mid-1990s. For me, instructional design is about designing "engaging and effective" asynchronous learning experiences (web-based training programs).
I've also had a few gigs as a classroom teacher, which has mostly been about implementing content and curriculum that was designed by others.
Some instructional designers have advanced degrees in instructional design, but many don't. My learning has all been completely informal. In Memoirs of an Instructional Designer, I describe how I got to the exalted position (ahem) in which I now find myself.
As you'll see by reading my job description, instructional design can include a whole lot of other things, especially when you work at a small company.
I'm a writer and a schmoozer. Many instructional designers are also responsible for building and developing content into working courses. I've always had the good fortune to have a team of graphic designers and programmers who do that heavy lifting. In Instructional Designers' Tools I talk a bit about that.
A few months ago, I started compiling a reading list at Beginning Instructional Designers Toolkit. Some of these resources can now be found in the sidebar of this blog. You can also check out my instructional design bookmarks at deli.cious.
If you're interested in learning more about instructional design, read and subscribe to the blogs of instructional designers and e-Learning practitioners who are in the trenches and doing the work on a daily basis. These are some of the folks I tune into:
- Christy Tucker
- Dennis Coxe
- B.J. Schone
- Tracy Hamilton
- Clive Shepherd
- Cathy Moore
- Dan Roddy
- Wendy Wickham
- Tom Kuhlman
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