Instructional designers study the ways people learn and teach, and use technology and multimedia tools to design learning environments and activities.
Instructional designers work on teams that may include editors, technical writers, programmers, subject matter experts, copyright officers, digital media technologists, graphic designers and other instructional designers. For more information, see the Editor, Graphic Designer, Technical Writer and Web Designer occupational profiles.
Instructional design often is based on 5 phases of development known as the ADDIE model: analyze, design, develop, implement and evaluate.
Duties may vary depending on whether instructional designers work for a school or in private industry. But in general, instructional designers:
- work with subject matter experts or content experts to identify learning goals
- develop objectives and ensure that content, learning activities and assessments match those objectives
- identify the type and level of learning and devise appropriate instructional strategies to elicit learning
- structure content and activities for student learning
- identify sequencing strategies
- identify and select media to support learning (for example, visual aids for face-to-face learners, video conferencing and online discussion forums for distance learners)
- develop learner assessments and evaluate course materials
- adapt instructional materials created for one format to another format (for example, adapt materials developed for face-to-face learning for e-learning).