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Why is Good Instructional Design More Important than Ever in the Modern World?

Why is Good Instructional Design More Important than Ever in the Modern World?

Although instructional design as a discipline has been around for decades (and probably was at its height in the 1970’s and 1980’s as a profession, its application and use has diminished in the age of easy to use software and access to and use of Internet. This is partly because it is so easy to create a course of almost any type, add as many “bells and whistles” as you like and then widely distribute it to a given audience. But in paying less attention to instructional design than we should we have lost something important and it is therefore high time we recognized that it is more important than ever in the modern world. After all, instructional design is the approach which helps to keep the process of training, coaching or development of any kind (on or off line) to be well-targeted and on track to meet the needs of the individual(s) at which it is aimed. Good instructional design therefore needs to appreciate that we are open to learning but find the best ways and moments to intervene in which to package it or parcel it up so that it can be successfully delivered. Although the approach is relatively straightforward, there is a best-practice way to conduct effective instructional design and this is shown in the 10-step infographic shown below:

Instructional Design Process

In summary terms this process ensures that we select the level at which we aim to provide our development efforts and that we design the learning experience to allow individuals to answer the kind of questions that will stretch them at this level. If these development experiences are well crafted, the learning delivery channel (classroom, one-to-one session, reading, case study, activity, online learning module, etc.) will not matter and the final course will be fit for purpose and be successful.

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About Dr. Jon Warner

Dr. Jon Warner is a prolific author, management consultant and executive coach with over 25 years experience. He has an MBA and a PhD in Organizational Psychology. Jon can be reached at

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About the Editor and Primary Author

Jon Warner

Jon Warner is an executive coach and management consultant and in the past has been a CEO in three very different companies. Read more

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