[This is my favorite definition just because it is so succinctly universal in it's potentional to explain such a vast vocation.]
Instructional Design (also called Instructional Systems Design (ISD) is the practice of creating "instructional experiences which make the acquisition of knowledge and skill more efficient, effective, and appealing." The process consists broadly of determining the current state and needs of the learner, defining the end goal of instruction, and creating some "intervention" to assist in the transition. Ideally the process is informed by pedagogically (process of teaching) and andragogically (adult learning) tested theories of learning and may take place in student-only, teacher-led or community-based settings. Retrieved from Wikipedia
America's future will be determined by the home and the school. The child becomes largely what she is taught; hence we must watch what we teach, and how we live. ~Jane Addams
First, I believe all students can be taught through the effective leadership of teachers. By effective I mean, the instructor must learn to understand where the student is coming from; this generation is completely at home in the world of internet usage. They are digital natives. E-Learning, distance learning, or computer-based learning, they are all the same to them. And I want to be at the forefront of this venue for teaching, either by developing new software for classroom use, or creating and teaching online classes.
If we can engage and touch on the student's interest in a topic or class, we can build on knowledge already learned. As in Piaget’s and Papert’s shared principles, I agree that adults and children like to be actively engaged in doing, and feel a sense of success when they see the pattern, or figure out the problem. Whether it is physical activity or games designed to determine mental acuity, pupils like to be doing rather than simply watching. I believe we as educators must recognize their comfort level and then push them to learn even more. It is not only the meeting of objectives but how we all get there. A student must frequently practice by answering questions or performing exercises to attain those goals. As professionals we should be able to provide them with methods that can connect them at the level they are and then help elevate them to the next levels. This Gestalt “frame of reference” idea is so necessary in the fundamental establishment of the foundation as well as creating goals. So for me, success can be determined by the student not only grasping the concepts (or knowledge), remembering it, being able to appropriately apply it, developing deep rooted beliefs on it, and retaining it as another layer in their knowledge base.
Technology can and should be used in the classroom daily, in a variety of ways not just as an addition (online research or word processing) to the traditional methods, but in place of the “traditional” methods. From online quizzes, to using online subscription databases, to online classes, some of these methods provide the instant feedback that some students need. There are other areas as well, actual classes devoted to technology. Using it to create portfolios or “cross curricular projects.” I know of a high school in Burbank that has a class on creating Apps. This use of technology allows the student to create and be creative in a world that they are already firmly established. Even for the teacher, Melanie Northcutt uses Microsoft OneNote to assist her in comparing students answers to assess the collective understanding of the class in a subject. (Jackson, 2012) Once a teacher has success in using technology it is much easier to get them to use that technology again, as well as newer technology. As an instructional designer, if the technology is easy for both the instructor and the pupil to use, then the technology is successful. It fills the need. If it is never tried, or is too cumbersome to use; simply put – it won’t be.
As technology constantly changes we must meet each new platform and embrace it – if nothing more than to simply understand the new technology and how to apply it effectively within the curriculae. I want to continue to discover and promote new ways of learning and teaching. This opportunity for creativity is inherent in this field. I believe that by learning new programs and developing new software, I will keep myself not only current, but relevant in today’s ever changing workforce.
International Society of Technology in Education. (2008). Standards for Teachers [Data File] Retrieved from
Jackson, Lorrie. (2012). Computers in the High School Classroom. Education World. Retried from