As spooky season is officially upon us, it’s time to take a closer look at outdated practices lurking in the shadowy corners of instructional design and training. Some of these methods have become more haunting than helpful. Which specters should we leave in the past? And what new apparitions should we welcome in their place? We asked industry professionals for their thoughts.
I'm ready to say an eternal goodbye to learning that lacks human connection. Learning loses its effectiveness when it’s strictly instructional; stories, examples, and links between new content and lived experiences are what bring it to life. Instead of letting the ghosts of “too much content” haunt training, let them rest in peace—and let your learners’ experiences fill the space.
—Stephanie Hubka, Managing Partner, Protos Learning
Relying solely on smile sheets as data to measure learning success is like going trick-or-treating at just one house. You might score a generous handful of candy, but you’re missing out on the diverse treats and scary experiences that make the night a full success. Use all the data around you to get more than empty calories.
—Shannon Tipton, Chief Learning Officer, Learning Rebels
The living dead are among us in the form of content-driven "solutions" in our learning ecosystems. Shift your focus to activity-driven designs. It's a simple trick, and the change in outcomes is a real treat.
—Mark Sheppard, Principal Consultant, 2Sphynx Innovations
The webcam debate should be exorcised! Webcams are not the end-all-be-all for online learning. An on-camera policy does not prove engagement; it proves compliance. It’s time to trust one another! Facilitators make using cameras worth it by noticing learners on screen but also being flexible, and learners recognize the impact cameras can have on relating and connecting in a remote world.
—Kassy LaBorie, Principal Consultant, Kassy LaBorie Consulting
ADDIE might end with E (evaluation), but we need to start thinking about evaluation at the beginning of our learning projects, instead of leaving it as an afterthought. From the first needs analysis question, we should plan how we’re going to measure the impact of what we’re creating.
—Heidi Kirby, CLO and Learning Strategist, Good Learning