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Three reasons you may need an instructional designer

This guest blog post is by Tracy Koenig-Poches, director of instructional design for Event Garde.

The need for instructional designers is growing as associations look to improve human performance in a world that is continually changing and demanding new skillsets from working professionals. However, there are still many who may be unsure as to how instructional designers can assist in the learning and development needs of an organization. Using a systematic process to design, develop, implement and evaluate learning materials, instructional designers assist associations and other organizations in the construction of learning solutions to close skill, knowledge, information and attitude gaps. They work side-by-side with subject matter experts and sponsoring organizations to design a learning process that ensures training materials are accurate, relevant and engaging and contribute to the ongoing growth and professional development of learners. Here are three reasons you may need an instructional designer:

  1. Your current training does not result in workplace changes.

Has your organization ever instituted training that just didn’t get the intended results? The content may have been solid, but it may not have been put together in a way that motivated and engaged learners. Reflecting on research-based, adult learning theories, an instructional designer analyzes your training needs, helps define your training goals and recommends the right delivery method for your content. Additionally, they assist you in developing learner-centered objectives, activities and assessments that support learners in the exposure, practice and ultimate acquisition of new knowledge. Instructional designers are poised to help ensure learners are actively engaged with content and are motivated to transfer newly acquired skills and learning into their workplaces.

  1. You want to convert your current training to e-learning modules.

Instructional designers can effectively leverage digital learning tools. If your current training exists as an instructor-led PowerPoint slide deck, and you wish to make the content more accessible to today’s learners, instructional designers can use their knowledge of widely used authoring tools such as Adobe Captivate or Articulate Storyline to create responsive, interactive and engaging e-learning modules. Too often, recorded in-person sessions are mistakenly presented as e-learning modules. However, a thoughtfully designed e-learning module provides learners with a complete learning experience with clearly written objectives, manageable amounts of content and engaging, interactive activities and assessments that directly address the objectives. Your learners can then access the learning modules using any device and from any location in which they desire to learn. Additionally, instructional designers can help you:

  • Choose and manage a learning management system to ensure it is effectively organized;
  • Develop and release courses that are easily accessed by learners; and
  • Examine learner data in order to make informed decisions regarding future learning and development projects.
  1. You just don’t have time to create great training.

Sometimes association training suffers because no one has time to design effective instructional experiences. Instructional designers can lessen the load. If, for instance, you desire to create training for a four-hour workshop, the instructional designer would assess your needs, write the objectives, design the training, create the PowerPoint slides, prepare the participant handouts and guides and prepare the facilitator guides. They could also prepare all survey questionnaires, as well as assist in evaluating and revising the training until it achieves the results your association desires. Perhaps you just need small jobs done, like creating job aids or turning an uninspired training manual into an animated instructional video. Instructional designers can use their expertise in design and digital tools to make your organization’s documents and media shine.

There are certainly more reasons your organization may desire an instructional designer’s expertise, and there are certainly more ways instructional designers may meet your organization’s learning and development needs.

Event Garde has a team of instructional designers who are ready to assist you. To learn more about instructional design, what instructional designers do, and, more specifically, how instructional designers from Event Garde can assist you, your organization and your learners, check out this e-learning module, which was created using Articulate


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