Here at Allen, we have a weekly designer meeting, which is a great opportunity for our design leads to meet and talk about what is going on with our projects. This week we had a designer showcase, and there were a few designers who showed their latest courses. It is always such a great experience to see what my fellow designers are doing; their innovation really motivates me. As we were talking about course, a designer made a comment about reflecting on our elearning course designs. So often, once a project is completed, we rush to the next project without taking time to reflect on what we’ve just completed.
In writing pedagogy, reflection is a vital part of a strong writing process. In the writing class I teach, I use Kathleen Yancey’s reflection questions. At the end of each major assignment, my students reflect and write about their projects.
I wonder how much we could gain by reflecting on the instructional design process and the end product. In an attempt to offer some kind of starting point for such reflection, I’ve adapted Yancey’s questions for an instructional design audience.
1. What aspects of the design process were particularly helpful to you during the creation of this project? How did they help you? How might those aspects be beneficial to you in future designing?
2. What aspects of this project were challenging to you? Why? How did you resolve those challenges?
3. Believe that this is the best course you’ve ever produced. Why is it? Now, doubt that this course is any good at all? Why is that?
4. How do you wish your audience would feel about your course? What in the design/writing of the course itself supports such a response?
5. What have you learned about design from developing this course? What have you learned about the topic from developing this course? What have you learned about yourself as a designer from working on this project? How will any of this learning help you in the future?
6. It’s time to deliver the course. If you had more time, what would you still like to develop? Why?
7. What did you learn during the elearning developmentt of this course that you didn’t expect to learn? How will that learning benefit you in the future?
Reflection doesn’t have to be overly formal, although taking some time to write your thoughts could be very beneficial. You don’t need to reflect on all these questions, and you don’t need to be in a strong tree pose for it to be effective. Any reflection is better than no reflection.
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