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EDC390T :: Instructional Systems Design (09450)

Fall 2010
Thursdays :: 4:00pm – 7:00pm :: SZB 296
Instructional Systems Design

Offered through INSTRUCTIONAL TECHNOLOGY, at the University of Texas at Austin

George Veletsianos, Ph.D.
244L Sanchez Bldg
Phone/Voice Mail: 512-232-2284
E-mail: veletsianos |AT|
@veletsianos on Twitter

Office Hours: Thurs 2:00-3:00 pm & by appointment.

You are more than welcome to make an appointment to meet with me to discuss your
progress, work, or evaluation AT ANY TIME.

Course Description & Goals

This course focuses on introducing students to the field, with specific emphasis on providing an
overview of the theoretical frameworks, current trends, and common concerns associated with the
design and development of instructional materials. The course aims at providing you with
theoretical, experiential (hands-on), and critical perspectives on instructional design as it is applied
in a variety of educational contexts (i.e. K-12, high education, and corporate training). You will read
and discuss behavioral, cognitive, and constructivist theories and their implications for design,
study several instructional design (ID) models, and engage in real-word design. As a group, we will
also compare and contrast instructional design models to develop and critique instructional designs
to solve real problems.

Students interested in instructional design, instructional effectiveness, learning environments,

learning, teaching, and training will find immediate relevance to this course.

The course will consist of a range of practices ranging from face-to-face and practical sessions led
by Dr. Veletsianos, self-directed student work, and real-world design. The course is designed in
line with collaborative and interactive ideas of learning, with special emphasis on inquiry-based

Course Goals include:

• Developing an understanding of the field and its foundations
• Understanding theoretical issues relevant to the ID process (behavioral, cognitive, and
constructivist perspectives)
• Developing knowledge of different components of a systematic instructional design process
• Learning how to write instructional objectives and assessments
• Learning how to identify appropriate instructional activities
• Learning how to evaluate instructional designs

But, above all,

Becoming learning experience designers

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Course Web Page
Our course site is at:

Dick, W., Carey, L. & Carey, J. (2008). Systematic Design of Instruction, (7th ed.) Upper Saddle
River, NJ: Pearson Available at the U.T. Co-op and other bookstores (in this syllabus: DC).

Other readings as assigned

Course Structure
Class Sessions and Attendance
Attendance is mandatory.

In case you need to miss a class session, please inform me a week in advance (except in case of
emergency, obviously).

If you expect to miss more that two scheduled sessions, I advise you to take this course at a later

Class Participation
Class participants are required to read assigned readings, contribute to face-to-face or online
discussions, and participate maximally in all class activities. Your participation will improve
everyone’s experience and learning.

Students are required to:
• Prepare all assigned readings for discussion and contribute to discussions
• Conduct on-line or off-line literature research
• Complete assignments related to course topics

Late Work Policy

All work is due on its specified date, except in emergency situations. If work is turned in late
without prior consultation with the instructor, the assignment will receive zero marks. In case the
instructor has agreed to allow you turn in late work, you will be subject to a 10% point deduction for
each 24-hours that the work is late. This policy is in place to provide an incentive to keep current
with coursework because the work in one session is based on understanding prior sessions.

File Backups
You are responsible for your files. You must backup all your files to your own disk, CD-Rom, or key
drive. I would suggest that you purchase a key drive or use a cloud service like Dropbox.

Performance Outcomes (Point Values)

Digital story of an ID model 15 Points

Final project: Module 30 Points
ID Case presentation 15 Points
ID resource sharing 5 Points
Course participation 20 Points
Total 85 Points

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Performance Outcome Descriptions

Digital Story of an ID Individually, you will study an alternative ID model and develop a
model other than DC digital story explaining the ID model, its focus, and the ways it differs
from DC. You will then share this story with other students in the class,
Due dates: and reflect/discuss the alternative ID models presented.
October 21-22

Final Project: Module In groups of 2-3, students are be required to redesign the university’s
Development Human Participant Training module OR develop a module relating to
Due date: December 8 Networked Scholarship (more details on the modules to follow)

For this task, you will use all aspects of the DC model, and handouts
providing guidance on each step of the model will be handed out
during class. Specific requirements/rubrics for the assignment will also
handed out during class.

ID Case presentation In groups of 2-3 you will be assigned an ID problem to investigate. You
will present this case/problem to the rest of the class and lead a
Due dates: Ongoing discussion of the issues involved with regards to solving the
instructional problem/issue presented.
ID Resource sharing You will identify and share an online tool that is helpful when designing
instruction. You will take 5 minutes to demonstrate this tool in class
Due date: Ongoing and share it with everyone else on our course site.

Examples of such resources are here:

Class participation You are required to be an active participant during class time. Being
an active participant means completing assigned readings,
Due date: Ongoing asking/answering meaningful questions, and being a critical thinker. If
you absolutely must miss a class, arrange with a classmate
beforehand to provide detailed notes to you. You are still responsible
for the information covered in classes that you miss.

Sign-up dates:
ID Resource Sharing ID Case presentations
September 2 1.
September 9 2. 1.
September 16 3. 2.
September 30 4.
October 7 5. 3.
October 14 6.
November 4 7. 4.
November 11 8. 5.
November 18 9.
December 8 Final projects due by 4pm.

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Relevant Policies

Course Drop
August 30 is the last day of the official add/drop period; after this date, changes in registration
require the approval of the department chair and usually the student’s dean. September 10 is the
last day to drop and possibly receive a refund.

Policy On ADA
The University of Texas at Austin provides upon request appropriate academic accommodations
for qualified students with disabilities. For more information, contact the Office of the Dean of
Students at 471-6259, 471-4641 TTY.

Emergency Evacuation Policy

Occupants of buildings on The University of Texas at Austin campus are required to evacuate
buildings when a fire alarm is activated. Alarm activation or announcement requires exiting and
assembling outside. Familiarize yourself with all exit doors of each classroom and building you may
occupy. Remember that the nearest exit door may not be the one you used when entering the
building. Students requiring assistance in evacuation shall inform their instructor in writing during
the first week of class. In the event of an evacuation, follow the instruction of faculty or class
instructors. Do not re-enter a building unless given instructions by the following: Austin Fire
Department, The University of Texas at Austin Police Department, or Fire Prevention Services

Policy on Scholastic Misconduct

Scholastic misconduct is broadly defined as "any act that violates the rights of another student in
academic work or that involves misrepresentation of your own work." Scholastic dishonesty
includes, (but is not necessarily limited to): cheating on assignments or examinations; plagiarizing,
which means misrepresenting as you own work any part of work done by another; submitting the
same paper, or substantially similar papers, to meet the requirements of more than one course
without the approval and consent of all instructors concerned; depriving another student of
necessary course materials; or interfering with another student's work.

Academic/Scholastic Dishonesty
Academic dishonesty in any portion of the academic work for a course shall be grounds for
awarding a grade of F or N for the entire course.

Definition of Grades
A - achievement that is outstanding relative to the level necessary to meet course requirements.
B - achievement that is significantly above the level necessary to meet course requirements.
C - achievement that meets the course requirements in every respect.
D - achievement that is worthy of credit even though it fails to meet fully the course requirements.
S - achievement that is satisfactory, which is equivalent to a C- or better (achievement required for
an S is at the discretion of the instructor but may be no lower than equivalent to a C-.) ----
F (or N) - Represents failure (or no credit) and signifies that the work was either (1) completed but
at a level of achievement that is not worthy of credit or (2) was not completed and there was no
agreement between the instructor and the student that the student would be awarded an I (see
also I).

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The grading for this course is as follows
A 95 – 100% A- 90 – 94%
B+ 87 – 89% B 84 – 86%
B- 80 – 83% C+ 77 – 79%
C 74 – 76% C- 70 – 73%
D+ 67 – 69% D 64 – 66%
D- 60-63% F Below 60%

Incomplete Grades
The grade of "I" is not a regular grade and cannot be given without special arrangements under
unusual circumstances. It cannot be given merely to extend the time allowed to complete course
requirements. If family or personal emergency requires that your attention be diverted from the
course and that more time than usual is needed to complete course work, arrangements should be
made with the instructor of the course before the quarter ends and consent obtained for receiving
an "Incomplete" or "I" grade. These arrangements should be made as soon as the need for an "I"
can be anticipated. A written agreement should be prepared indicating when the course
assignment will be completed. I require an "Incomplete" grade for a course to be removed within
two weeks into the semester immediately following its receipt.

Receipt of Final Grade

Feedback and grades will be sent via email. Your grades are also available online after they are

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Course Schedule

August 26: Introduction & Class Overview

• Introductions
• What the course is about
o Readings
o Structure
o Requirements & expectations
o What is design?
o Your first in-class ID activity

• Tasks for next week

o There are lots of Instructional Design models that designers use. The one that we
will use in this class is called the Dick and Carey model. Read DC, chapter 1, to
learn about this model.
o Read Reiser: A history of IDT [Available online]
o Read: Lowenthal, P., & Wilson, B. G. (2009). Labels DO Matter! A Critique of
AECT’s Redefinition of the Field. TechTrends, 54(1), 38-46. [Available online]

September 2: Our field and its history

• ID Resource sharing
• What is ID?
• The history of ID
• Professional Organizations in our field
• Overview of the Dick & Carey model

• Tasks for next week

o Read: Ertmer, P., & Newby, T. (1993). Behaviorism, Cognitivism, Constructivism:
Comparing critical features from an instructional design perspective. Performance
Improvement Quarterly, 6(4), 50-71. [available online]
o Read Duffy & Cunningham [available online]

September 9: Learning Theories and ID

• ID Resource sharing
• Learning Theories overview
• How do learning theories inform design?
• ID Case presentation #1

• Tasks for next week

o Read: Chapter 5 from DC
o Read: Chapter 6 from DC
o Read : Mager: The qualities of Useful Objectives [online]

September 16: Defining the Learner & Writing Objectives

• ID Resource sharing

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• The elusive learner
• The elusive (and often unclear) objectives
• ID Case presentation #2

• Tasks for next week

o Read: Chapter 7 from DC

September 23: NO FACE-TO-FACE MEETING. Online Learning Session: Assessments

• Course session will be conducted online over the duration of the week. Further details will
be handed out in class.

• Tasks for next week

o Read: Chapter 8 from DC
o Watch:
o Read: Merrill, M. D. (2002). First principles of instruction, Educational Technology
Research and Development, 50(3), 43-59. [Available online]

September 30: Instructional Strategy

• ID Resource sharing
• Developing instructional strategies
• First principles & theory alignment
• Guest Speaker: Justin Olmanson & the FunWritr group

• Tasks for next week

o Read: Chapter 9 from DC

October 7: Instructional Activities

• ID Resource sharing
• Material development
• Media Selection
• ID Case presentation #3

• Tasks for next week

o Read: Chapter 10 from DC
 Skim Chapter 11 from DC
o Read: Chapter 12 from DC

October 14: Formative & Summative Evaluations

• ID Resource sharing
• Evaluating products, experiences, learners, projects, etc
• Guest Speaker: Lucas Horton will discuss Alien Rescue

• Tasks for next week

o Individually you will study an alternative ID models and develop a digital story
explaining the ID model, its focus, and the ways it differs from DC. You will then
share with each other and discuss. Rubric for this assignment will be given in class.
 Resource to start with:

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October 21: NO FACE-TO-FACE MEETING. Online Learning Session: ID Models beyond D&C
(George at E-learn 2010)
• See tasks above

• Tasks for next week

o Read: Yanchar, S. C., South, J. B., Williams, D. D., Allen, S., & Wilson, B. G.
(2009). Struggling with theory? A qualitative investigation of conceptual tool use in
instructional design. Educational Technology Research and Development, 58(1),

October 28: What do ID practitioners do? Visiting Instructor: Debby Kalk (George at AECT
• Instructional Design practice in the real-world
• Theory vs. practice

• Tasks for next week

o Read: Read Hokanson, B., Miller, C. D., & Hooper, S. (2008). Commodity,
Firmness, and Delight: Four Modes of Instructional Design Practice. In L. Botturi &
T. Stubbs (Eds.), Handbook of Visual Languages for Instructional Design: Theories
and Practices (pp. 1-17). Hershey, PA: Information Science Reference. [Available
o Wilson, B. G., Parrish, P., & Veletsianos, G. (2008). Raising the Bar for Instructional
Outcomes : Toward Transformative Learning Experiences. Educational Technology,
48(3), 39-44.
o Veletsianos (in press). Designing opportunities for transformation with Emerging
Technologies. Educational Technology.

November 4: Instructional Designers and the field’s goals

• ID Resource sharing
• How do we see ourselves?
• What do we strive towards?
• ID Case presentation #4

• Tasks for next week

o Read: Veletsianos, G., & Doering, A. (2010). Long-term student experiences in a
hybrid, open-ended and problem based Adventure Learning program. Australasian
Journal of Educational Technology, 26(2), 280-296. From:
o Read: Doering, A., Scharber, C., Miller, C., & Veletsianos, G. (2009). GeoThentic:
Designing and Assessing with Technological Pedagogical Content Knowledge.
Contemporary Issues in Technology and Teacher Education, 9(3).

November 11: Designing Interactive Open-Ended Learning Environments (George will be at

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Bowsten, TX for a keynote: CLASS WILL START AT 7PM AND FINISH AT 10PM).
• ID Resource sharing
• Complexities in designing open-ended learning environments
• Geothentic discussion
• Adventure Learning discussion
• ID Case presentation #5

• Tasks for next week

o Read: Veletsianos, G. (2010). Contextually relevant pedagogical agents: Visual
appearance, stereotypes, and first impressions and their impact on learning.
Computers & Education, 55(2), 576-585.
o Read: Veletsianos, G., Miller, C., & Doering, A. (2009). EnALI: A Research and
Design Framework for Virtual Characters and Pedagogical Agents. Journal of
Educational Computing Research, 41(2), 171-194.

November 18: Designing Virtual Characters, Avatars, & Pedagogical Agents

• ID Resource sharing
• Designing virtual characters for instruction
• Agent design activity

• Tasks for next week

o Rest
o Continue working on your final project

November 25: NO CLASS: Thanksgiving break

December 2: Reflection, Course Evaluation, and Work Session

In this session, we will reflect on our work during this past semester and think back on the cases
we solved, and designs we created to inform our future practice. You will then have the opportunity
to work in your teams in preparing your final project and receive feedback from the instructor and
from others on your designs.

December 8: Submit your final project by 4 p.m.

Enjoy the holiday season and have a great time with friends and family!

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