Reflection Paper #2
When I decided that I wanted to pursue a Master’s degree, I was not sure which field would match my professional experience and formal education. I spoke with several associates in the instructional design field and expressed my interests and my apprehensions. I decided to bite the bullet and re-enter the classroom after years of a career in technology. Each day, I become more confident in my ability to apply the phases, elements and cycles of Instructional Design in the case studies presented in class. I have noticed that learning these processes has proved to be useful not only in the classroom, but in other aspects of my life as well. I recognize that I process information differently than I did in July, 2019. In addition, I acknowledge that my brain has automatically shifted my train of thought to accommodate these systems as I navigate through my professional and personal lives daily.
In my professional life, I am consistently speaking with faculty, staff and students that are experiencing technical issues in the world of academia. My main priority is to capture these issues or incidents in an independent ticketing system. I am able to perform these processes within the blink of an eye, because I have performed this same task for many years. However, recently I have been putting more time and thought into the help desk tickets as I create them in the ticketing system. Learning that “one of your most critical tasks is to serve as the learner’s advocate” (Cennamo & Kalk, 2019, p. 31), I am constantly focusing on my Help Desk audience and their learning characteristics. I focus on their age, education, interests and values because I know that these characteristics influence behavior. I focus on whether or not the customer’s need has been defined and whether it can be addressed through learning. I analyze the audience (customers) and asks questions to determine the implications of their needs. I can appreciate this new outlook on problem-solving in my professional life as I prepare to delve into an Instructional Design career.
The readings and class discussions from LT 7100 have also impacted my personal life in a positive way. Having recently renovated my home, I find it very easy to be inundated with home projects. These projects range from building out the basement to designing flower gardens in the backyard. Usually, my wife and I make a decision to travel to Home Depot, deciding when and how to start the project once we arrive to the store. This always results in numerous store trips and several item returns. We embrace the time and effort spent because we make it fun. Recently, I started addressing my home projects in a more systematic approach. I encouraged my wife to work with me to establish the desired outcome of the project and make sure that it is accessible. Using the task analysis method, I could identify the subskills that aligned with the desired outcome. Leroy, my neighbor, is a talented carpenter and my subject matter expert. As I apply the Collaborative ASC cycle to my project, Leroy provides answers and confirms my understanding of the goals and outcomes. It is enlightening to apply the information I learn in class to everyday real-life situations.
My excitement continues to grow as I am constantly reminded of my new thought processes and behaviors in relation to the readings and assignments in LT 7100. I continue to familiarize myself with the five phases of design and the essential elements of design so these models and processes continue to be a part of my everyday life. I practice the Collaborative ASC cycle and the ADDIE framework so I can use these methods seamlessly as I prepare for a new career. As my instructional design toolkit is being created, I can see success on the horizon. I am being equipped and groomed for a successful career in instructional design.
Cennamo, Katherine & Kalk, Debby. (2019) Real World Instructional Design: An Iterative Approach to Designing Learning Experiences. New York, NY: Routledge.
Carliner, Saul & Driscoll, Margaret. (2019). An Overview of Training and Development. Excelsior, MN: Lakewood Media Group, LLC.