Excellent instructional design: a 10-tip beginners’ guide

These days, not every e-learning course is designed by an instructional designer.

In-house DIY e-learning and rapid development mean that training managers and subject matter experts (among others) have to put on an e-learning design hat from time to time.

Great e-learning isn’t about eye-catching graphics and technical wizardry. Those things can be wonderfully engaging, but they’re the bells and whistles. Underneath all that, you’ve got to have sound content and an effective learning strategy. And that hinges on excellent instructional design.

As a linguist and literature graduate, I don’t believe you need a degree in instructional design or IT psychology or anything else in particular to do this well. Instructional design isn’t easy (if it was, there’d be no such thing as bad e-learning), but the basics can be taught and easily adopted.

Earlier this week I presented a webinar for IITT members setting out my top tips for excellent instructional design. This beginners’ guide provides some basic building blocks to help training managers or subject matter experts wear their new instructional design hats with confidence!

I’ve put the slides from ‘top 10 tips for excellent instructional design’ (with no narrative) on SlideShare and there’s also a recording of the session available for IITT members.

What do you think? What tips would you add for instructional design beginners? What do you wish you’d known about e-learning design when you first started out? 

Image: healingdream / FreeDigitalPhotos.net

4 thoughts on “Excellent instructional design: a 10-tip beginners’ guide

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  3. Donna sitton

    I am not an IITT member, so is there any way that I can access the recorded session? Also, can you send me the resources where you found the stats shown in the presentation?

    Thank you! 🙂

  4. Stephanie Dedhar Post author

    Hi Donna. I’m afraid I’m not sure whether non-IITT members can access the recording but perhaps you could contact the IITT directly to find out? All the figures in the presentation were taken from the Towards Maturity 2010 benchmark report of preliminary findings and the CIPD learning and talent development survey 2010 as reviewed by Towards Maturity. Both of these are listed on the references slide towards the back of the presentation and I’ve also included short links: http://bit.ly/ac0jyZ and http://bit.ly/brQx0. Hope this helps, and thanks for reading!


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