Instructional Design & Technology as a Dynamic Capability

OL and IDT

I find it almost impossible to discuss Instructional Design & Technology (IDT) without having conversations about organizational learning and dynamic capabilities. Having the ability to reconfigure competencies when the environment changes is a major concern of business leaders in maintaining competitive advantage. IDT should be part of the firm’s portfolio of dynamic capabilities since it is about […]

What is an instructional method?


I was recently asked what is an instructional method. This is an incredibly important question especially in higher education where most faculty are experts in their field but have little to no formal instructional-design education or instructional-design experience. Reigeluth (1999) defines an instructional-design theory (i.e. model) as “a theory that offers explicit guidance on how […]

Instructional Theory versus Learning Theory

Instructional-Design Theory

In Instructional-Design Theories and Models: A New Paradigm of Instructional Theory, Vol II, Reigeluth proposes that instructional-design theory (also called instructional theory) is separate and distinct from learning theory. Instructional theory “offers explicit guidance on how to help people learn and develop.” Learning theory is typically a descriptive theory; it explains how people learn. Instructional theory is […]

Dissimilar Learning

Air Combat

The Air Force enacted dissimilar air combat training shortly after the Vietnam war. Prior to this, pilots learned combat maneuvers against each other in various flight training courses. But at some point they have to practice and adapt these techniques against enemy aircraft and techniques that they are not familiar with. So there are advanced training programs […]

The Field of LMS Design

LMS Types

About 17 years ago I created a simple website for my dissertation. I took a document and organized it into a web to study how hyper-linked text documents affect online student learning. Graphical browsers were just  coming on the scene but for my study I only used text which seemed appropriate for the time. No […]

Blackboard Exemplary Course Program

Exemplary Course Winner

Since October 2010 I have been blogging my thoughts on how to improve online learning courses. These included things like increasing instructor presence, managing & grading discussion forums and preparing the learner. Most ideas that I have are not my own but rather a collection of recommendations that I draw from the literature and others […]

Instructor Presence


The Higher Learning Commission (HLC) puts a lot of weight on substantive interaction between faculty and students. The presence or absence of this interaction is one of the factors that differentiates distance learning (education) from correspondence education. Smith et al. (2002) published an article in eLearn Magazine on the challenge of instructor presence. The title sets the tone: […]