Thursday, March 15, 2012

Agile Instructional Design in Practice

A few weeks back I was engaged in an email conversation about Agile Instructional Design and where it fits with the institutional learner and the individual learner. I believe this was a very important conversation about my views on Agile Instructional Design. here is the Transcript;

Peter: Great to connect with you. I followed you on twitter and here is an email. Please reply to confirm receipt. Be Well...

Other: Thanks, Peter! I started looking for rapid or agile instructional development (ID), because we've got a lot of programs here that need to go online, and I'd like to find a methodology to assist with the development process. I'd also like to find a model of agile or rapid ID that would support leadership in understanding their sponsorship role. I've done these ID projects for over a decade, but usually have had the luxury of more resources. Times have changed and we've got limited resources and departments are likely to increasingly do things on their own, or even hiring 3rd party companies because they think we don't have the internal resources. It looks like you're focus is more toward exploring the personal side of ID. Is that what you're focusing on now with progressive video?

http://www.flickr.com/photos/helico/404640681/

Peter: It all sounds so familiar to me. A while back I was inspired by Rapid... but it still fell into the waterfall of ADDIE as far as I was concerned, so I started applying Agile techniques and so far they seem to be working on a number of projects. I have every intention of keeping my AID exploration as a methodology for larger institutions, medium sized communities of practice and the individual learner. I have a couple of sites (traditional institutions) where I am gathering further information of how they are applying Agile techniques to ID. I keep focused on the individual for it is where I believe all ID needs to come from. I honestly believe the best instructional designer is the learner themselves. And if we can build the learning into the actual course development this is optimal, saves money and deepens learning. Each round of the course just builds more content. One of the troubles I see when people go outside of the "institutions" Instructional Design Office is there are so many lost opportunities for reuse and the money spent when things aren't a shared service from a platform perspective... Anyhow, I hope I answered your question about my focus. I focus on the individual (myself being the example) for it is where all learning has to begin... but each individual becomes a part of the learning collective and should collaborate in building understanding by iteratively building and sharing learning resources with the guidance of teachers and instructional designers... That is kind of where I am going with AID.
Love to continue this discussion... I think I may turn this email into a blog post. It was a very important question. Thank-you! Be Well...


Other: What if your designing new programs. And it's only the exceptional learner who understands their own learning, right? It's rare to have students who've been taught about metacognition? For many students, control of their own learning is completely foreign and they've spent a lifetime having it stripped away from them.

Peter: Exactly!!!! that is why my blog has the theme, "Setting out to inspire adult learners. Pedagogy, technology and life-long learning from outside the institutions." and why I have the inspired learner series of posts;
I believe inspiring learners to claim back their own learning is one of the issues of our time... and the dialogue has only just begun.

What to do when the individual doesn't yet exist... set out to engage them during the first lesson or online module. Murder Madness and Mayhem is an excellent example. AID at its best! I spoke of it in this post; http://criticaltechnology.blogspot.com/2012/01/implementation-of-aid.html Look at what they did here http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Wikipedia:WikiProject_Murder_Madness_and_Mayhem In a way this is the easiest time for the ID or teacher for they just begin with the theme or outcomes of the course. It gets harder when there already is a body of content created by previous running's of the course. Introduce the topic, engage the learners, build the approach, a couple of rubrics, create some tension, inspire... what teachers should be doing anyway ;) This is an awesome conversation! Thank-you!

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