Summer Reads for Instructional Designers and Learning Professionals 2019

Summer’s a special time to read. Maybe it’s at the park, in a hammock, or under a tree. Or maybe you’re on the beach with the sound of the waves filling the gaps between the turn of the page. For me, it’s often listening to an audiobook while on a walk—something about it helps my mind drift into creative possibilities.

As instructional designers, summer’s a great time to explore related fields to stretch your skills and the way you think about design (and perhaps beat the dreaded design slump). †So, here’s a few books to inspire you.

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Student Self-Assessment to Empower Learning

Wouldn’t it be terrific to know that your students are motivated and confident in their abilities to learn what you teach them? Rest assured, you can guide students towards self-directed learning by capitalizing on the synergy found in self-directed learning, self-regulated learning, and student self-assessment (SSA).

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The Essentials of Professional Development

The amount of technological change in the past 15 years is staggering. Even in Higher Education, we’re now required to continually learn on the job to stay relevant. While some organizations provide opportunities for professional development, some cannot keep up with the demand. Guest blogger Steve Graham shares how to take charge of your own professional growth.

As a coach, I often work with clients who are needy for knowledge. They desire to grow professionally and often feel stuck in their current work environment. It is no secret that when an organization values developing their people, the benefits for both the employee and organization are numerous. The benefits often include: lower turnover, increased engagement, and a smarter workforce. Professional development goes beyond cookie-cutter training programs. It involves a deeper commitment to learning.

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Learning from Stories

Have you ever lost yourself in a story? There’s nothing quite like it. The whole world passes by as you absorb the plot, setting, and characters. When you return (a little blurry-eyed) to reality, your whole perspective shifts to adjust to what you’ve experienced. After immersing yourself in the narrative, you have changed.

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eLearning Feedback: Encouraging Learner to Learner Feedback

Throughout my eLearning Feedback series, we’ve looked at the significance of relevant, relational feedback and how instructors can enhance their feedback by providing it to their learners through various audio and video tools. In the conclusion of this series, we’ll explore the value of learner-to-learner feedback and how you can create opportunities for students to provide relevant, relational feedback to each other.

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Formatting eLearning Documents: Picture This

Images are a great way to add a little life to your document. Microsoft Word makes it especially easy to insert images into a document. But, with great power comes great responsibility, and you should stick with some basic principles when inserting images. If not, they can be overwhelming, hard to see, and difficult for a reader to interpret the relationship of the image to the text.

So, in this post, we’ll explore the basics of inserting and formatting an image and some little extras, like adding alt text to improve the accessibility of your documents.

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Blackboard and Broken Links: Behind the Scenes with a Student Worker

Our student workers truly enrich our work and days. It’s truly enjoyable for faculty and staff to watch students grow in the time they’re here. While the years at university sometimes seems to ebb and flow for students, it flies by for us. Today, senior Jordyn Moore reflects on her time working with the eLearning team.

As my fourth and final year at college draws to a close, I often find myself reflecting upon my time as a student worker in eLearning.

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Useful Feedback from a Student’s Perspective

In a literature class I took in high school, my class submitted all of our papers online for the ease of checking plagiarism and providing feedback. As Ann described in her post about audio and video feedback, my teacher not only left us written comments but audio feedback as well.

Five years later, I still remember how encouraging his audio clips were to me. They were constructive and uplifting.

What made this feedback so meaningful? Why has it stuck with me for so long? I think it’s a combination of a few different factors.

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Bring Simplicity to Your eLearning Design

Each day, the amount of data created increases by about 2.5 quintillion bytes, and 90 percent of the data in existence comes from the past two years (Marr, 2018). Without a guide (or a friendly-neighborhood librarian), it’s impossible to sort through that much data on our own. It’s no wonder our learners struggle with information overload (“Information Overload,” 2019).

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eLearning Feedback: Enhancing Instructor to Learner Feedback

In my last post on relevant and relational feedback, I mentioned how adding a human factor into your online courses creates another dimension of building relationships with students. Constructive, relevant, and relational feedback helps students develop an awareness of their learning as well as the ability to recognize and address their weak points on their own. Today we’ll look at audio and video feedback tools you can use to build relationships with your students and help them take these important steps in their learning.

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