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Category Archives: Information/Instructional Design

Information/Instructional Design

Instructional Design

Instruction: A sequential order of steps that describes the process for carrying out a certain objective, for example, how to change a light bulb.

An instructional design describing how to change a light bulb. There is a sequential order to the steps that are involved.

Instructional design (also know as instructional systems design) is the analysis of learning needs and systematic development of instructions. Instructional designers often use instructional technology or educational technology as tools for developing instructions. Instructional design models specify a method, that if followed correctly, will fulfill the transfer of knowledge, skills and attitude to the recipient of the instruction. It goes without saying that paying attention to “best practices”, and innovative teaching methods will make any instructional design model more effective.There must be contrast in order to convey the information clearly and effectively and to make the information flow.

An instructional poster describing how to work on a computer without physically injuring the body.

Many instructional designers make a big mistake. In an attempt to make content simple, they take out information. Unfortunately, this leaves the person viewing the instructions wondering, “Why am I learning this and what am I learning exactly?”  The solution isn’t to take away content, but to present it in a clearer and simpler way. This is the art of good instructional design. When deciding what information and elements to leave out, it is essential to consider what content, when removed, will not harm the learning process as this will make the instructions useless and hence make it a bad design.

Information Design

Information: Information is the meaningful representation of data. When the data is structured and arranged, it becomes information that is readable.

Information design is all about gathering data and transforming it into clear, meaningful and easily-accessed information. The goal is to make the complex data into readable information that can easily be accessed and read by average people.

An information design graphic can be made up of ISOTYPE (International System Of TYpographic Picture Education) which is an early infographical form that originated in the 1930’s by an Austrian philosopher and curator Otto Neurath. This is a symbolic way of representing quantitative information via easily interpretable icons. Using icons makes the design more eye catching and easy to interpret. But if the data is not represented correctly, it could make the information too complex for the reader which turns the information back into data, a non readable source to an average person. Hence, information design is all about turning data into information so that it can be read easily.

An information design chart showing the relative distance between places using easy to read icons.

 

Sources

Culatta, Richard. “About this site…” Instructional Design. Web. 22 Mar. 2011.<http://www.instructionaldesign.org/>

McCandless, David. “Vintage Infoporn No. 1.” Information is Beautiful. 7 Mar. 2011. Web. 23 Mar. 2011. <http://www.informationisbeautiful.net/>