Instructional Designers create the educational materials that keep us informed. They design training and user manuals that help a specific audience use software or hardware. They create curriculum that guides our use of educational technology. The process of instructional design is systematic, following a specific method that seeks to share knowledge of technical systems. It can include trial and error development of online or written resources. It can also include research and end-user analysis.
What Does an Instructional Designer Do?
The Instructional Designer could create the technical how to’s for software, hardware, Internet applications, phone apps, manuals for use of electronics and even wiki’s or blogs. Their job is to make the complicated simple for the average end user and to improve the efficiency of a technological tool so that the average user can succeed in using it.
Here’s a great video overview of the current Instructional Designer landscape:
Instructional Designer Skills Needed
Instructional Designers are technical and scientific writers, as well as graphic and CAD-savvy. They are as comfortable with a schematic as they are a jpeg as they methodically create step-by-step instructions for the end user. They have great reading comprehension and are methodical and systematic in their thought, writing and design process. They also understand people and are able to communicate content concisely and with clarity.
Instructional Designers follow scientific method, are generally organized and comfortable with technical and professional jargon. They are analytic and scientific, like technology and understanding how things work, especially complicated electronic components. In fact, they have a knack for communicating the complicated to the masses so that they can understand and utilize a tool, whether it is an on-line webinar or eLearning course. They are able to collate data from a variety of sources and then put it together in a way that is relevant to their target audience.
Suggested Software Proficiency
Graphics tools like Snagit (which allows you to copy portions of screen shots and edit them)
Photo editors like PhotoShop
istockPhoto (or similar photo sourcing)
Adobe Premier for video editing
There’s also a range of software created specifically for Instructional Design, like products from Quid Interactive.
Next Steps for Hiring Instructional Designers
Looking to hire an Instructional Designer? Let Artisan’s digital staffing agency find you the perfect employee to match with your business.
Are you an Instructional Designer? View our digital staffing agency’s list of available jobs and opportunities here.