Become an Innovative Online Nurse Educator

Instructional Design in Online Education

Aug 17, 2021

As we embark on the upcoming semester, I've prepared a brief exercise to help you evaluate whether the essential elements of Instructional Design are present in your course. So let's jump right into today's blog post.

  • Step 1: Preparing Your Course Syllabus

The first required element that is needed to help your structure or design your course is your Course Syllabus.The course syllabus can take on many formats and I've heard of wonderful things that can be done to make your syllabus more interactive and engaging, however, just a basic syllabus will also suffice if you're in a time crunch.

  • Step 2: Developing Effective Onboarding Practices

After your course syllabus is finalized, the next thing you want to do is decide how to best onboard your students. This can be done in a variety of ways from sending a Welcome Message, Creating an orientation module and designing Introductory/Ice-breaker activities.

  • Step 3: Developing Learning Objectives

Once your onboarding is complete, you want to move on to developing your learning objectives. You can use your syllabus as a guide for this. I would recommend "chunking" your course materials into Modules and setting learning objectives for each Module. This makes it easier to organize your course in a way that allows students to follow along seamlessly.

  • Step 4: Developing and Curating Course Content

Once your learning objectives have be determined, you can begin finding content that helps to achieve these goals. These can range from readings to videos to other interactive content such as quizzes and even game-based activities such as digital escape rooms.

  • Step 5: Creating Engaging Assignments

Once you have taught students the material, now it's time to asses their knowledge with assignments. In online courses, this typically takes the format of discussion board activities, but you can make discussion board activities more engaging by using different techniques such as the PEAR Approach and also checking out some of the engaging assignments in the Assignment Spotlights in this blog on the first Tuesday of each month!

Now that you know some of these basic elements of instructional design, what are you planning to add to your course this semester? Share your ideas with me in The Online Educator Facebook group.

If you're looking for a step-by-step process to walk you through each of these steps, be sure to check out the Course Prep Toolkit, that was designed specifically for Course Prep for online educators in Higher Education!

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