Educational Technology

August 7, 2017

Instructional Designers – what they do

Filed under: Educational Technology — admin @ 12:35 am

By Sharon O’Malley, Inside Higher Ed

The practice of instructional design emerged during World War II, when the military assembled groups of psychologists and academics to create training and assessment materials for troops. In 1954, Harvard University psychology professor and author B. F. Skinner introduced the concept of programmed instructional materials through his article “The Science of Learning and the Art of Teaching.” Within a decade, noted academics — including Robert Gagne, widely considered the father of the field of instructional design — had embraced the importance of assessment and learning objectives in teaching and learning. Although higher education typically left course design up to the professors who would teach in traditional classrooms, the popularity of online courses created a need for input from professionals trained in the science of teaching, instructional methods and the technology that would make learning possible for remote students. And now, the field is growing. A 2016 report funded by the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation estimated that a minimum of 13,000 instructional designers work on college campuses.

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