The Design Process Lifecycle Gather Assemble Vision Run Adapt EvaluateCourse Course Courseconception delivery refinementLearning Block CourseActivityThe Resource ’What is learning design?’ talked about the term learning designreferring to ‘The process of planning’ and the ‘product of the design process’.It is helpful to think of design (in general and learning design in particular) as aprocess, i.e. a collection of related, structured activities or tasks that produce aspecific service or product that fulfils (i.e. it is ‘fit for purpose’) a particular customeror customers’ requirements or needs. The above lifecycle diagram is just oneexample of a design lifecycle which can be applied to developing a learning design.This example has six stages each of which can be applied to the different levels atwhich learning design can occur e.g.: • The design of a learning activity • The design of a unit or block of learning in a Module or Course • The design of a complete Module or CourseEach stage contains a number of typical activities which define the stage.1 VisioningTypical activities during this stage might include: • Identifying a need or an opportunity for an activity/block/module • Visioning/brainstorming the idea/concept behind the need or opportunity • Thinking about the feasibility of the idea/concept
• Developing support and sponsorship for the ‘shared’ idea • Identifying what successful delivery of the idea or opportunity might look like • Identifying the risks and constraints that would impact the idea or opportunity • Developing a statement of what the ‘future’ (activity/block/module) might look like • Producing an initial proposal • Getting approval to proceed to the next stage2 GatheringTypical activities during this stage might include: • Scoping the activity/block/module • Collecting the learner’s view of what the activity/block/module might look like • Thinking about the learner experience and learner interaction • Analysis of the requirements of the need or opportunity – learner, teacher, technical, content • Starting to construct the pedagogic approach for delivery • Scoping the learning outcomes • Scoping the assessment approach • Planning the content • Identifying possibilities for the re-usability of existing materials • Thinking about designing for re-usability e.g. as an OER • Thinking about how the need or opportunity might be delivered e.g. on-line, face to face, a blended approach • Identifying what standards you need to achieve e.g. for usability and accessibility • Thinking about how the learning design might be tested • Defining the scope of the idea into a draft learning design specification • Cost/benefit analysis of the need or opportunity • Initial planning/time-tabling of how the specification might be delivered • Getting approval to proceed to the next stage3 AssemblingTypical activities during this stage might include: • Developing the pedagogic approach for delivery • Developing the content • Developing the learning outcomes • Developing the assessment approach • Transforming the ‘gathering’ stage into a completed learning design specification • Building the activity/block/module from the learning design specification • Testing and quality assurance of the activity/unit/module e.g. critical reading, developmental testing, usability testing, accessibility testing
• Setting up the learning environment (technical and non-technical) for delivery4 RunningTypical activities during this stage might include: • Presentation/delivery of the activity/block/module in a ‘live’ learning environment • Reviewing the presentation/delivery5 EvaluatingTypical activities during this stage might include: • Collecting learner feedback during and post presentation • Collecting teacher feedback during and post presentation • Analysing feedback data • Evaluating if the activity/block/module was ‘fit for purpose’ • Proposing enhancements to the activity/unit/module • Approving enhancements6 AdaptingTypical activities during this stage might include: • Changing the requirements of the activity/block/module • Revising the original visionWhilst the design process diagram shows a cycle of stages, in reality it is likely thatwithin each stage there are a number of iterations e.g. it may take a number ofiterations of Visioning before the specification of what is required is sufficientlydetailed enough for Gathering to start.