Instructional design (ID) encompasses a wide array of research-based or innovative activities to improve human performance and learning, products, processes, and overall return on investments. Moreover, ID includes the use of research and theory, common sense as practice, which is sometimes better provided from an outside source unfamiliar with the situation. Instructional designers work closely with organizations and subject matter experts to solve problems, determine needs, improve outcomes, and/or find opportunities through systematic analysis and a model-based approach.
Instructional design and development utilizes critical thinking, expert knowledge, best practices, and technologies to improve an organization either system-wide or in discrete work units. Technology refers to any tool, software or hardware, or process. For example, simple writing tasks can be improved with an ergo-dynamic fountain pen, desk, and workstation. From this example, even a pen is considered technology. It’s the role of the instructional designer to take all matters, including potentially insignificant ones like a writing tool, into consideration when developing a plan of action.
Instructional Design & Development
University of South Alabama