Archive for April, 2008

I love everything about design. I love the design of buildings. I love the design of photographs. I love the design of a good meal. I just like how things are put together. Maybe that’s why I love being an instructional designer. But it’s hard sometimes to explain to other people exactly what I do & more importantly what I can do for you if you want to teach online.

What do I do? Well, I help make things simple. I help make things visual. I help structure things so that the path for learners is clear and meaningful and engaging. I help people move to a style of teaching that works when they can see people to one that works better when they can’t see people, from a style that works well when you all learn at the same time to one that works well when everyone chooses when they want to learn (which, if you look at our server stats, is usually somewhere between 4 pm to midnight). As I was wondering around the web this beautiful Sunday morning, I came across a wonderful quote from George Nelson. While Nelson is an architect, I like his definition: a designer is someone who “gives form to the essense of something”.

What’s the essence of what you do as a teacher? And what form will that take online? As an instructional designer, everything I do boils down to helping you answer those two questions.

Hmmm …. I wonder if that’s any clearer.  🙂  Let me know what you think.

what do we want to work on

(Photo, What do we want to work on? by Nancy White)


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Odds & ends

From my feed pile, a couple of things worth sharing …

Cole Camplese asks, is it time to ditch the committee and fire up the community?  Count me in!

Want to avoid presentationitis, that uncontrollable urge that many of us have to lecture at folks online?  The idea is to show, not tell, to get your message across.  Look at how Alvin Trusty does it by weaving two topics together: copyright & how to make a great PowerPoint.

Textbooks as social objects?  Neat idea.


Seriously, what is up with this seating arrangement?

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If you teach live online, I bet this feels familiar.

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