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ADDIE is the lifeblood of many instructional designers- we eat, sleep and breathe ADDIE! So, I am going to break down each phase of ADDIE for you in this post. I’ll be referencing my Ultimate Instructional Design Starter Kit, where I provide an overview of the 5 phases, so be sure to grab that and follow along.
The phases of ADDIE are not always clear on what should be done under each phase. My goal today is to clarify the key tasks for each phase using my 5 Step Instructional Design Blueprint Using ADDIE. The Blueprint breaks ADDIE down into simple, repeatable, and actionable instructional design tasks.
Whether you are building an eLearning course, a face-to-face training, a blended training, or a webinar, your process doesn’t have to be difficult. A fuzzy Instructional System Design process can make it complicated, however. It can also blur the lines of task ownership, which can lead to disastrous results.
The examples I have seen of ADDIE never fully describe all the activities that need to be completed in each phase. Speaking of phases, I don’t really think of ADDIE in phases.
I think of ADDIE as chapters. Those chapters are Analysis, Design, Development, Implement, and Evaluate. And, each chapter comes with its own set of tasks to be completed.
W-AGILE Training Project Management and ADDIE
When managing training projects, I typically use a combination of Waterfall and Agile project management methodologies. We’ll call this project management style, W-AGILE. If you don’t know what Waterfall or Agile are, don’t worry about it. It’s not important to understanding ADDIE or Instructional SystemDesign. We will talk more about these project management methodologies in the future.
Why don’t I think of ADDIE as a phased instructional system design process? Phase implies doing something first, second, third, and etc. While this is somewhat true, there are many activities and tasks which can be completed together.
I prefer to organize all of my tasks in a list, without attention to the phase, and then work my list.
For the past decade or so, I have continually refined my use of ADDIE to develop the system I use today. I have tried and evaluated other models, but I always come back to ADDIE because of its simplicity. Over the years, I have created too many trainings to count. I have personally trained hundreds of people to effectively and successfully use ADDIE to build training courses, too. I don’t know if this makes me an expert or not, but I feel pretty confident about what I am going to share.
My hope is with the information I have learned over the years and will share with you today, you will have the clarity you need to build awesome, quality content, too.
Are you ready to get started? Let’s do it!
Step 1: Collect Information and lots of it! (AKA: TRAINING NEEDS ANALYSIS)
This is the most important step in any instructional system design process, in my opinion. This is where you probe, learn, and probe some more to ensure you fully understand the project.
What’s funny, or not so funny, is that so many people open a PowerPoint or an eLearning tool/program and begin developing the course. They start with the core activity of Development and totally skip Analysis and Design.
If you look at the acronym for Development, Implement and Evaluate, you see DIE. Yep, DIE, which is a very likely result for any training course which starts with Development.
Don’t be a developer of death!
Instead, be a developer who gets results by effectively using ADDIE to design and build your courses.
What do you do in the Analysis phase?
Yes, I used the word phase because everyone else does, and I don’t want to muddy the waters with non-value adding nuances.
- Host a Scoping Meeting to ask questions and get answers and complete your Training Needs Analysis template (TNA)
- Conduct Subject Matter Expert (SME) Interviews to learn more about the training as needed
- Review supplemental resources
- Ask more clarifying questions
Step 2: Organize the Information You Collected (AKA: DESIGN)
To me, this is where the fuzziness really starts with ADDIE. It started a bit with Analysis by not clearly articulating what to analyze but it gets worse here. When, I think of design, I think of making something pretty or building something but that is not the case with the Design phase. Design is where you organize all the information you collected. You will lay it out in an organized format with your instructional and engagement strategies. Then, you will get the SME and/or Business Owner to review and sign off on it.
What do you do in the Design phase?
- Organize the collected information (Focus on Need to Know content, which you identified in your scoping meeting and in the completed Training Needs Analysis template)
- Create the design (i.e. an outline, a mindmap, a storyboard, a prototype, or a PowerPoint draft) to layout your training
- Add in your recommended instructional, engagement, and retention activities
- Add suggested graphics and images
- Draft exam questions, if you have an assessment
- Draft supplemental resources (identified in the completed Training Needs Analysis template)
- Schedule review meeting or send for review and sign off from SME/Business Owner
Helpful hint: If you know when your design will be complete and ready for a review, go ahead and schedule the review meeting. This way, your reviewers have the review calendared, which can speed up the review process.
By now, you can tell how important the Scoping Meeting and the Training Needs Analysis template are. It is in the Scoping Meeting that you complete the Training Needs Analysis template. The Training Needs Analysis template is the tool you use to collect the information you need to build your training.
Step 3: Build Your Course and Supplemental Resources (AKA: DEVELOP)
Once you reach the Develop phase, the bulk of your work is done. All the foundational work you did to understand the needs of the audience, the desired outcomes of the training, and design the training will come together in the Develop phase.
What do you do in the Develop phase?
- Complete the script and build your training in your tool
- Check the content to ensure it achieves the goals of the training (i.e. the learning objectives)
- Check the content to ensure it fully and clearly covers the assessment questions
- Record video/audio
- Purchase/obtain graphics
- Edit video/audio/ images
- Complete team Q/A
- Schedule review meeting or send for review and sign off from SME/Business Owner
Oftentimes, I encounter designers who write the learning objectives at the front of the training and again at the end of the training. This sounds like a good practice, right? Well, it’s only a good practice if we check to ensure the content full addresses the learning objectives.
The same is true for assessment questions. How can we expect someone to know the answers to assessment questions? We have to make sure we taught them the content.
Help your audience get the most of your trainings. You can help them by ensuring that the learning objectives and assessment questions are thoroughly covered in your content.
Step 4: Launch Your Training Course (AKA: IMPLEMENT)
It’s now time to implement or LAUNCH your training as I like to say. This means you are ready to execute the handoff to a trainer and/or execute your implementation strategy.
Your implementation strategy doesn’t have to be a major implementation strategy. What’s important is that you have an implementation strategy in place. If you don’t have one for every training, the training is at risk of sitting on a shelf collecting dust. You have to proudly let people know the training is available!
What do you do in the Implement phase?
- Promote training to your target audience
- Send out notification regarding training to leadership
- Launch training (e.g. facilitate, handoff to trainer, or upload to LMS)
- Distribute surveys post course
Step 5: Inspect What You Expect (AKA: EVALUATE)
There are many ways to evaluate training. You can observe learning in a face-to-face training and/or collect survey feedback. Survey feedback can help you determine your learner’s level of readiness to take action on the content learned in the course. You can give participants an assessment or look for changes in performance. And, you can look at how a training influenced a key performance metric for the company. This one is a little harder to accomplish because it requires analysis of a group of people who completed specific training, but it is doable, if it is important to the company.
What do you do in the Evaluate phase?
- Review data
- Survey responses
- Capture completion metrics (i.e. number of participants)
- Measure performance of learners who completed the training
- Evaluate assessment performance
- Provide feedback to SME, Business Owner/Department
- Use results to improve content
Now, before I wrap up, please remember you don’t have to wait for one phase to complete before you start the next one! You CAN and SHOULD be working on tasks from more than one phase at the same time.
Also, before you go, don’t forget to download the Ultimate Instructional Design Starter kit to use as a cheat sheet. It just might help you design better trainings and help you get the results you want!
See ya soon!
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The Testimonials are In:
Working with Shanwtay and Katie at the Instructional Design Company was a dream come true. Their creativity, expertise, and professionalism throughout the entire process was beyond top notch. I engaged them to help turn my first book into a training course, and I could not be happier with how the final product turned out. If you have an instructional design project and you’re considering which company to work with, you can stop your search and thank me later. They are truly the best in the business.
I joined the Instructional Design & Tech Accelerator Certificate Program because I struggled to find jobs in instructional design beyond the development phase. I’ve done a couple of training programs with lots of random projects, but I was overwhelmed, not connecting the dots, and not good at structuring my writing to hit learning objectives. I was looking for motivation and direction at beginning a better Instructional Designer.
After taking the Instructional Design & Tech Certificate program and joining my fantastic team for support, I found the structure and approach to be what I need to take my next steps, evening improving my skills in the development stage.
Teacher, Future Instructional Designer
I love how this course let’s you work at your own pace. I got great tips and learned many things. The ongoing support for multiple people and groups is what I love the best. You are never alone in this process. I have been able to adjust my resume and began creating a portfolio of work I’ve completed to add when applying for jobs. I use many of the PowerPoint skills in my lessons and trainings. I would highly recommend this for anyone wanting to become an instructional designer.
Teacher, Future Instructional Designer
I have searched for the last few years to find some suitable career change where I wouldn’t have to earn another degree and where I could use the talents and skills I already have as a teacher. When I came across the Instructional Design Accelerator course, I loved the fact that Shawntay was a former teacher and could relate to a teacher’s need to transition from the classroom. This was what sold the course for me. Her experiences are invaluable especially when translating teacher duties to instructional designer duties. I would (and have) recommended this program to other teachers I know who are looking to transition out of the classroom. I do appreciate ALL of her feedback on my projects!
L&D Project Manager
The Instructional Design & Tech Accelerator certificate program is one of the most comprehensive ID programs out there for beginners. If you’re looking to grow your schools in ID and development then I highly recommend this program. Not only will this program give you an overview of theory, but you will receive a thorough walkthrough of how to apply what you have learned. Although I had already secured a position in Learning & Development when I bought this course, it helped me to move up into a new position as a Learning & Development Project Manager!
Future Instructional Designer
If you have any interest in ID, sign up for this program NOW! Shawntay and her team are top notch! The course content exceeded my expectations in a big way and the encouragement and support continues to be so valuable. You will not feel alone going through this course, you will learn so much, you’ll have many cheerleaders, and you will have fun!
Future Instructional Designer
I am really enjoying this program! It’s prerfect for someone who is thinking about a career shift to Instructional Design and does not have a lot of experience. This is my first real introduction to Instructional Design and it’s been the perfect beginner course to help me get my feet wet. The modules are broken down well and it’s great to go at your own pace and at your own time. The modules themselves are very comprehensive and you learn a lot from all of them. I really like how each one build upon each other and you’re working towards the bigger project of designing your first training course from scratch. I’m learning so much from going through this course! I was provided great feedback from Katie and Shawntay through the process via Trello Boards, comments on the Google documents, and Facebook group. This course has been well worth the time and effort and I appreciate the fact that I will always have the resources available to me after I complete the training (just in case I’m not quite ready to transition yet).
Future Instructional Designer
I can’t say enough great things about the Instructional Design & Tech Accelerator Certificate Program! The length of the program is perfect; it doesn’t feel rushed and there’s just the right amount of structure to give you the accountability you need. There are so many opportunities to get live answers to any questions you have related to the course content or anything ID-related! This program gave me the support and structure I needed to both feel affirmed in the relevant skills I already had coming in and to fill in the gaps I had as a career-changer going into ID. Shawntay, Katie, and all the coaches are super helpful and supportive. I now feel confident that I have the tools and access to resources I need to apply for ID jobs without wondering if there’s something I’m “missing” in the preparation process. I’d highly recommend this program to anyone wanting to transition into ID or who just wants to brush up on their skills in the field.
Krista Johnson Awomoyi
Freelance Instructional Designer
I’d highly recommend the Instructional Design & Tech Accelerator Certificate Program. I’m blown away by how much I learned in just 12 weeks. I had ID experience prior to taking this course and was just looking to get a better understanding of applying adult learning principles. This course well exceeded my expectations! Not only did I gain a clear understanding of adult learning principles, I was also able to apply those principles by creating assets for your portfolio using PowerPoint, Adobe Premiere Pro and Storyline. The hands on support that we received was top notch.
This program is one of the most robust yet fulfilling L&D programs I’ve seen. I learned so much about the industry and about the limitlessness of my own capabilities. I am so appreciative of Shawntay and all of the trainers who took part in the program. They went above and beyond with not only guiding, but communicating live and working one on one or in small groups. If you are on the fence, I say take the leap and you will not regret it! There’s so much to learn, not only from the trainers, but also the learners in your group. Everyone comes in with their own skills and can be additional support and guidance for you. Thank you for creating this program!
Instructional Designer Training Facilitator
Shawntay is an amazing individual. She is very knowledgeable in all aspects of ID and eLearning. She is also very compassionate and loves to help and see everyone around her grow and prosper. Shawntay has been a great mentor to me and she has helped me mature as an instructional designer and eLearning developer. She has provided me with opportunities when others have overlooked me. I am very grateful to have met and built a lifelong relationship with Shawntay.
I recently got hired into my first instructional design / training position and Shawntay was one of the first people to congratulate me!
Freelance Instructional Designer
My teacher-to-instructional-designer journey began two years ago when I left my teaching comfort zone and started my first freelance ID job. Now, I’m stepping out of the classroom and taking my freelance work full-time, so I’m thrilled to be joining the Tech Accelerator program. Adding technologies like Articulate 360 and Adobe Premiere Pro to my qualifications will help me take my courses to the next level and attract more clients!
Teacher Transitioning into Instructional Design
I am genuinely grateful for this course. I wanted a real-world perspective and feel like I got it. I’m teaching now, but nearing retirement age but can see myself working as an instructional designer well into my retirement years. My other goal is to take as many courses in statistics as possible in hopes of bringing some mathematical precision to the ROI question. Like you say, getting accurate metrics to measure ROI can be a challenge, but I intend to work on that part. That’s unimportant right now, what is important is the fact that I feel like this course was well worth every penny I spent and I would to it again in a heartbeat. I have too much going on right now, but as soon as I get some time freed up I intend to take your course in project management.
Turns Your Written Thoughts Into a Masterpiece!
Shawntay Skjoldager can turn your written thoughts into a masterpiece. She is great to work with and the most organized person I know!
President and CEO, The Creative Entreprenuer
Shawntay has been incredible!
Shawntay has been incredible and her team is responsive and effective in translating my training programs into professional presentations. Don’t hesitate to contact her for your project.
Beth B. De Lima, MBA, SPHR-CA, SHRM-SCP
President and Principal of HRM Consulting, Inc.
IDC is My Secret Weapon to Soar Above My Competition!
The IDC team has been my secret and special weapon of success. They have delivered above and beyond with every single project out in front of them. They have met and beat timelines. They have been Uber responsive every step of the way. I keep them on speed dial and have and continue to recommend them to friends and clients. If you are in need of instructional design and plenty more, this is THE ALL-STAR team that will more than deliver and help make you and your project soar above the competition.
LT. COL. Jason O. Harris
U.S. Air Force Officer, Special Operations Pilot, U.S.A.F. Academy Instructor, Motivational Speaker
A Tremendous Asset to the Project Team!
Working with Shawntay and the Instructional Design Company has allowed our university to meet the growing demands of our programs. Shawntay’s expertise allowed for the course development to be completed on time and met all of the university requirements. Shawntay’s project management skills were phenomenal and allowed my team to work on other areas while she completed this project for us. Her work is of high quality and her professionalism and willingness to help made her a tremendous asset to the project team.
Academic Quality Assurance Specialist, Abilene Christian University
Creative & Highly Talented!
Shawntay is a creative and highly talented instructional designer. She brought a wealth of knowledge, expertise, and leadership that enabled her to own the design and creation of a full scale facilitator curriculum and train-the-trainer program. It was a pleasure to partner with Shawntay, her project management and communication skills ensured the project was on time and on budget.
Breaks Down Mammoth Projects
“Shawntay is quick study and carefully synthesizes information for presentations that are clear, concise and captivating. Her personality draws the audience in and her content mastery is excellent. A team player and organizer, Shawntay has the ability to break down mammoth projects, keep everybody on time and on task.”
Author, Speaker, Strengths Coach
“I have had many opportunities to work with Shawntay—mainly in the support of implementing new eLearning initiatives. I have been very impressed by her ability to quickly learn how to use rapid eLearning development tools and effectively use them to create multiple courses within a short timeframe. Shawntay’s enthusiastic nature, attention to detail, and dedication to her work make her a pleasure to work with and a great asset to both Texas A&M University-Commerce and the broader training community within the Texas A&M University System.”
Director of Learning Strategy, Caveo Learning
Top Notch Professional
Working with Shawntay has been an immense pleasure. She is atop notch professional who brings enthusiasm and extensiveexpertise to professional curriculum development and execution. Her knowledge of tried and true techniques to maximize the effectiveness of presentations is invaluable.
Nancy Drapeau, PRC
Vice President of Research, CEIR - Center for Exhibition Industry Research
Fortunate to Find Shawntay!
“I was fortunate to find Shawntay when our organization was looking to expand and update our educational offerings. Shawntay proved herself to be an educational and personal development expert who immediately made an impact with our clients throughout Europe. Everyone who came into contact with Shawntay was immediately impressed by her level of expertise and willingness to share her knowledge with those around her. I would not hesitate to recommend Shawntay to anyone looking for an education subject matter expert.”
Director of Qualifications and NSD Services, Mary Kay Inc.
Short Turn Around. On Time. Under Budget!
“We hired Shawntay to develop a training facilitator’s guide and PowerPoint slide deck for an operations manual heavy with technical content. The project was made more challenging by a very short turn around, 5 business days, and the fact that the operations manual wasn’t complete and was being updated simultaneously with the facilitator’s guide and slide deck. Despite these challenges, Shawntay delivered as promised. On time and under budget.”
Dave Beeman, CPP
Vice President, Andy Frain Services
Need an Expert Who Consistently Delivers?
“Working with Shawntay you will immediately notice her professional presence and poise, but over time her tenacious pursuit of excellence and her skills in instructional development and adult learning will really impress you. I worked with her at Mary Kay, and was able to experience firsthand her great rapport with regional partners in Europe, understanding their unique sales force training needs. In addition, Shawntay consistently exhibited grace under pressure, made executive decisions to move business forward. If you are looking for an expert who consistently delivers and goes the extra mile to get things done, contact Shawntay!”
Marketing Director, Academic Partnerships
Quality Products & Solutions!
“I had had the pleasure of knowing and working with Shawntay on more than a few occasions. I found her to be a very good business partner and very committed to delivering a quality product or solution in a timely manner. I have always had a positive experience in partnering with Shawntay and would recommend that you consider leveraging her talent.”
Judy Owen, CPC
Transformational Leadership Coach
“Invest in yourself and take your skills to the next NEXT level!”
Get yourself signed up for Shawntay Skjoldager’s Instructional Design & Tech Accelerator Certificate Program today and be on your way to success! Within the first week of taking her course, you will experience growth! Be sure to plug into her Facebook Q&A sessions for personalized help, too. This is THE course to take if you are new to instructional design or have landed on the training team and need help getting started.
Managing Partner, PHiG
“Her enthusiasm for adult learning is contagious!”
Shawntay has exceptional knowledge and experience with all aspects of creating and implementing effective, performance based training for adults. She is exceptional at needs analysis – identifying target audiences and collaborating with business owners to keep training focused on business needs. And she is great to work with – always providing great support to get projects done on-time and on-target. She is always on the look-out for new and more effective ways to engage learners. Her enthusiasm for adult learning is contagious!
eLearning Developer/Instructional Designer, Vivos Therapeutics
I have known and worked with Shawntay as a education program director and use the expertise of ShawntayMichelle for the development of my presentations. The service has always been “spot on” with professionalism, care and attention. Shawntay’s recommendations to my ideas make me look good to my clients.
Al Lomas CMP, CEM, CMM, CFE
Owner, Certified Consulting Services
“Shawntay Skjoldager reached in and made my training life so much easier!”
I am new to the training design and development world and I was SO excited to get in there, but I really lacked the real-world knowledge that would set me apart from my peers. And, then Shawntay Skjoldager walked into my life with an outstretched hand and a seemingly endless list of ways to knock every training out of the park. From the Training Analysis Form to the Tay Tay tips, this course made my life so much easier and even ironed out the review process that I had been struggling with for months.
Take time to invest in your own learning and make sure to put Shawntay Michelle at the top of your personal development list!
Training Specialist, LegalShieldCourses