This site discusses seven theories for designing learning environments, known as Learning Design or Instructional Design:
- Gagné's Nine Steps of Instruction (1985)
- John Keller's ARCS model (1988)
- Merrill's Component Display Theory (1983)
- Reigeluth's Elaboration Theory (1983)
- van Merriënboer's 4C/ID Model (1997)
- Rapid Instructional Design (RID)
It also includes:
- Instructional Design Framework with templates
- Learning Design Model built from the six theories
- Agile Learning Design framework for rapid instructional design
- List of templates
What is Instructional Design?
Instructional Design is defined as “a systematic process that is employed to develop education and training programs in a consistent and reliable fashion” (Reiser & Dempsey, 2007). In addition, Instructional Design models or theories may be thought of as frameworks for developing modules or lessons that 1) increase and/or enhance the possibility of learning and 2) encourage the engagement of learners so that they learn faster and gain deeper levels of understanding.
Instructional Design (ID) models differ from Instructional System Design (ISD) models in that ISD models have a broad scope and typically divide the instruction design process into five phases (van Merriënboer, 1997, pp 2-3):
- Implementation or Delivery
ID models are less broad in nature and mostly focus on analysis and design, thus they normally go into much more detail, especially in the design portion. ID models are normally employed in conjunction with ISD models. The ISD process keeps the entire training, development, or educational process on the correct path or objective, while one or more ID models are used that best supports the learning process being designed. This allows ISD to be similar to plug-and-play, in which you plug the needed ID model into the ISD model:
There are three types of strategies within Instruction Design theories (Reigeluth, 1983):
- Organizational strategies are broken down on the micro or macro level and deals with the way in which a lesson is arranged and sequenced.
- Delivery strategies are concerned with the decisions that affect the way in which information is carried to the student, particularly, the selection of instructional media.
- Management strategies involve the decisions that help the learner interact with the activities designed for learning.
Recently, there has been some movement to call Instructional Design “Learning Design,” with the premise that this will focus the process more on the learners rather than the content. However, this has been criticized by others as we cannot design learning because it is an outcome, rather we can only design the instruction, which is a process.
Gagné, R. (1985). The Conditions of Learning and the Theory of Instruction, (4th ed.), New York: Holt, Rinehart, and Winston.
Keller, J. M., & Suzuki, K. (1988). Use of the ARCS motivation model in courseware design. In D. H. Jonassen (ED.) Instructional designs for microcomputer courseware. Hillsdale, NJ: Lawrence Erlbaum.
Merrill, M. D. (1983). Component Display Theory. In C. M. Reigeluth (ed), Instructional Design Theories and Models: An Overview of their Current States. Hillsdale, NJ: Lawrence Erlbaum.
Reigeluth, C. M. and Stein, F. S. (1983). The Elaboration Theory of Instruction. In C. M. Reigeluth (ed), Instructional Design Theories and Models: An Overview of their Current States. Hillsdale, NJ: Lawrence Erlbaum.
Reiser, R. A. & Dempsey, J. V. (2007). Trends and Issues in Instructional Design (2nd ed.). Upper Saddle River, NJ: Pearson Education, Inc.
van Merriënboer, J. J. G. (1997). Training Complex Cognitive Skills: A Four-Component Instructional Design Model for Technical Training. Englewood Cliffs, New Jersey: Educational Technology Publications.