The final project for this course includes constructing a training project within my educational context, based on the ADDIE model. I chose to create a teacher-training project to give real-world experience to my students before they complete mandatory teaching practicums during their 4th year of study. The ongoing training would occur during Years 1, 2 and 3. First, I’ll give an overview of my project, followed by a discussion about the importance of design during the entire process.
Muban Chombueng Rajabhat University (MCRU) is a bottom-tier, higher education institute in Thailandwith no admission requirements, except the completion of 12th grade. MCRU started as a teacher training college and has evolved to offer bachelor, master and doctorate degrees in a variety of fields, ranging from sciences and mathematics to the arts and humanities. I work within the Faculty of Education (synonymous with ‘College ofEducation’ in theU.S.) as a lecturer within the English Major program. Graduates from this program will become English teachers within Thai government schools.
English major students at MCRU are 18-25 years old and have completed 12th grade. Roughly 95% of students are female. All students are Thai citizens, although there is a minority of Muslim students, roughly 7%. Thai is the first language of most learners; a dialect of Malay is the first language for Muslim students. English is the second or third language for learners.
Students are given real-world practice in teaching during two practicums during the 4th year of instruction. At this point, the students should already be able to translate teaching theory into language-learning lesson plans for secondary school learners. What actually happens is that the students are confused about making and executing lesson plans because they have never had practice putting elements of theory into practice, resulting in required remedial teaching. Proposed training would give students the tools for effective classroom teaching in a real-world environment from the 1st year of instruction until program completion (4th year). This would allow students to become familiar with teaching from the outset with gradually increasing complexity.
What’s all this fuss about Design?
I agree with the degree of importance which Hodell (2011) places on the design phase. He says design is the central process of the ADDIE model and that every part of ADDIE is depends on it; he illustrates this through the recognition and emphasis of ISD professionals as “instructional designers” (p. 57). Furthermore, the sheer amount of tasks included within the design phase makes it a central role in analyzing, developing, implementing and evaluating the design; all the other elements of ADDIE depend on the design of the instruction. Design coordinates other aspects of the ADDIE model, pilot testing, as well as efforts of stakeholders in the project; centralizes control of the other elements of ADDIE; includes the writing of design plans, lesson plans, objectives, evaluation tasks; and acts as a quality control of the project (pp. 56-57). Also, by primarily focusing of the design element in creating the other elements of ADDIE, the overall process of the ADDIE model is simplified and given definite direction.
The supremacy of the design element within ADDIE is emphasized by the delivery method chosen through the specific design plans. To illustrate, Jieun Lee (2008) shows that by creating an appropriate design for learners, in this case through designing blended training, the efficacy of the training project can be optimized. While the success of a training project depends on all of the elements of the ADDIE model, the successful design of the instructional method directly ‘makes or breaks’ the overall project. Continuing this theme, Nokes and Sappington (2010) and Miller (2011) both show that, specifically, the aesthetic quality of a design method can act to enhance or detract from the effectiveness of the training. Nokes and Sappington (2010) explore the particulars of aesthetically designing materials while Miller (2011) looks at the connection between emotional design and learner performance, finding that “the aesthetic elements of an e-assessment environment have the potential to enhance the nature of the learner experience, both in satisfaction and performance” (p. 333). Through experience, I have seen that ineffective aesthetic design detracts from learning and that well thought-out design plans can, to a degree, compensate for other elements in ADDIE, specifically the implementation element.
So, now that I’ve gone over the importance of design, how will I integrate this knowledge into my project to make it successful? The obvious first step is to meticulously design my project. Because the design process encompasses so many activities, I will need to successfully integrate my analysis to produce design plans, lesson plans, objectives and evaluation tasks. I can further strengthen my design by keeping in mind the aesthetic elements in my delivery methods. Because the training will include both physical and virtual classrooms, PowerPoint presentations and the class wiki will need to be aesthetically pleasing and enhance knowledge retention instead of detracting from the content. It’s easier said than done!
Hodell, C. (2011). ISD from the ground up: A no-nonsense approach to instructional design (3rd ed.).United States of America: American Society for Training & Development.
Lee, J. (2010). Design of blended training for transfer into the workplace. [Article]. British Journal of Educational Technology, 41(2), 181-198. doi: 10.1111/j.1467-8535.2008.00909.x
Miller, C. (2011). Aesthetics and e-assessment: The interplay of emotional design and learner performance. [Article]. Distance Education, 32(3), 307-337. doi: 10.1080/01587919.2011.610291
Nokes, J., & Sappington, E. (2010). At first sight: Improving your training with good visual design. [Article]. T+D, 64(8), 31-33.