In my previous instructional design job, we were always trying to find a balance between effectiveness and efficiency in the design of our online workshop structure and organization. We were a small team with responsibility for many online courses. We worked with faculty SMEs with varying experience in online teaching and course design and we also supported the learners. Working with both groups gave us insight, but the push to increase our online offerings while providing support and generally trying to keep the place running was a bit challenging ! However, I loved the fast pace and the constant questioning about what was most efficient and effective – what was best – best for the faculty, best for the learner, best for the organization.
These questions still enter my mind every day. So I was thrilled to see the articles Standard Operating Procedure? and Instructional Designers, Looking to be Heard side by side in this week’s Inside Digital Learning. Honestly, I was doing a happy dance this morning as I saw the titles. (Yes… it is hard – but not impossible! – to dance while reading!) The issues of standardization have been brought up. Those issues are tied to faculty concerns for autonomy and they tap into instructional designer skill sets. Faculty members are great at research and have a vested interest in the topic. Instructional designers want to do more research and work more closely with faculty. This seems like the perfect opportunity to address the needs of faculty, instructional designers, and their universities – all in the name of a more efficient and effective online course design that benefits everyone.