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Random Thoughts on Instructional Design

Teaching

j0341471Throughout my years teaching I have found that I am most successful when my students direct the learning. To encourage this I try to provide a classroom atmosphere and/or online environment in which there is a sense of community where “we’re all in this together.” I encourage questions, discussions, and peer-to-peer interaction. Many times I will give learners a problem situation and resources with little or no explanation and have them work towards a solution. Watching students take responsibility for their own learning is not only profound but also rejuvenating. Having them share their strategies and revealing my own helps to instill the idea that I am a co-learner in the classroom and not the sole possessor of knowledge. The following remarks are taken from student correspondence.

I feel proud, like I’ve really accomplished something! I believe that excellence in teaching only occurs when we give our students the opportunity to take ownership of their learning. My corporate training, higher education teaching, and experience in Instructional Systems have prepared me to teach courses in: instructional design and theory, training design and development, instructional technology, courseware authoring, multimedia development, digital media and emerging technologies, and distance education. The following is a listing of some of the most recent courses that I have taught:

  • Design and Development of Online Courses – Eight week online faculty development course designed to teach faculty how to migrate classroom based courses from a classroom setting to a pedagogically sound online learning environment. Course was designed to run on Blackboard, WebCT, and Angel – it is offered twice each term.
  • Business Communications and Information Strategies – Graduate course designed to provide new graduate students in an online MBA program with an introduction to: oral, written, and virtual communication; methods for finding and evaluating course resources; online research techniques; critical thinking, and program standards.
  • Computers in Education – Graduate course is designed to provide students with a focus on the seamless integration of technology into the classroom. Students will become knowledgeable of the latest innovations in computer and multimedia technology as they apply to classroom and administrative tasks.
  • Corporate Trainer Certificate Program (non-credit) – Certificate program designed specifically for the in-house training staff at Independence Blue Cross in Philadelphia, PA. The program is delivered utilizing a hybrid online and classroom learning environment.
  • Designing Distance Education (3 credits) – This course stresses the use of instructional systems design in the analysis, design, application and evaluation of distance education and distributive learning. It is oriented toward the theory and practical considerations of learning, and instructional design.
  • Foundations of Instructional Technology – This course is designed to provide students with an introduction to the tools of instructional technology for education and industry. The course explores the theoretical foundations of Instructional Technology; and, introduces the student to current and projected tools for implementing said discipline. During the semester, the student will gain an understanding of how technology can be utilized to deliver instruction and optimize the learning of target audiences, through planning and selection of the appropriate media.
  • Internet: Theory/Practice in Telecommunications – This undergraduate course provides students with a working knowledge environmental variables influencing the Word Wide Web. 
  • Management of Technological Change in Instructional Technology – This course focuses on research principles and methodology pertinent to the role and practice of Instructional Technologists. Its overall purpose is to equip the learner with research skills required for critiquing existing studies and planning, conducting and writing a feasible, pilot research project applicable in a technology rich learning environment. The course experiences will support a research perspective in learners and foster acceptance of the fact that research understanding is basic to professional competence in instructional technology.

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