Late last night, I finished a QM internal online course review. One thing I have noticed that instructors miss is providing learners with detailed navigational instructions for their online course. Instructors should be careful to tell learners how to locate content, learning activities, assignments, announcements, assessments, and other course material. Not all learners have taken an online course and not all online courses are arranged the same way. Providing learners with navigational instructions reduces cognitive load as the learner will not expend cognitive resources to figure out where to find things– cognitive resources may be appropriately applied to learning the content.
I am in the process of creating two curriculum outlines. Bloom’s Taxonomy of Educational Objectives with corresponding action verbs is a constant companion while I draft terminal performance objectives and enabling objectives from the task analyses. Use of the hierarchical list of educational objectives–Knowledge, Comprehension, Application, Analysis, Synthesis, Evaluation– and verbs facilitates the development of objectives that are appropriately sequenced– from LOTS (lower order thinking skills) to HOTS (higher order thinking skills)– and aligned with instructional materials, learning activities, and assessment items.
Problems arise–learners do not meet learning objectives, performance goals are not attained, learners become frustrated–when instruction is created without a thorough analysis. When this happens the instructional designer must put on his or her investigator hat and locate the holes in the content and/or instructional materials. Instructional and training programs that begin with a thorough analysis produce efficient, effective, extraordinary results the first time around.
I’m learning two more Learning Management Systems– Blackboard and Canvas. I will add these to LMSs in my toolkit: Sakai and Jenzabar e-Racer.
What is your favorite LMS and why is it your favorite?
I’m working on an informal Quality Matters review for a criminal justice course. QM reviews give me the opportunity to keep my instructional design and online course development skills sharp while assisting a peer with his or her online course development.
This is the official relaunch of Extraordinary! by Design Instructional Design and Performance Improvement.