Designing Courses

Reflection is not a skill that I naturally possess, but it is something that I value.  With every experience, be it my own or one that I am a part of, I am learning to look back and see what went well and what could use improvement.  In my mind, there are always items in each category, and it is worth reviewing.  I have found that it is easy to view reflection as a waste of time or not needed – something that I am guilty of doing on several occasions, but when I do take the time, I am better prepared for the next time a similar experience happens.  That being said, it is time for a reflection on my experience designing a digital resource.

I have always enjoying designing new ways to tackle a problem.  I like taking paper processes and making them digital or reviewing a new process to ensure it is providing the expected results.  This is the first time I had the opportunity to design something new.  In the past, I have always worked with the existing resource to improve it.  While it was daunting being the one to create a digital learning resource (DLR), it was also exciting.  I was surprised to see the how much a role empathy should play in all designs.  My experience did not lead me to think that empathy has any part of designing courses and resources.  I was pleased (and relieved) to learn the truth.  I question how to get those currently in designer roles who are not employing empathy to realize the power behind empathetic designs.

For future designs for which I am responsible, I would like to have users involved.  Due to my circumstances, I was not able to implement feedback from users into the design.  As a result, my design used the literature to create an informed design.  I hoped to receive some feedback from those who reviewed my prototype, but that was not the case.  Given the limited amount of feedback, I realized the value I placed on knowing what others in the field thought and suggestions they had.

I am looking forward to my next opportunity to design a course.  I will be able to take what I have learned and apply it again, and hopefully do a better job.  When that time comes, I would like to keep better notes during the process in order to have a stronger reflection upon completion.

1 thought on “Designing Courses

  1. Hi Kathy, just like you, reflection was not something that I do naturally. I used to write myself a note at the end of the workday using my phone on “what went well, one thing that did not go well, and how can I improve it for next time.” This activity helped me practice reflection but as time goes by, I was unable to sustain it. This goes back to your point of it takes time. What I appreciated about writing while reflecting was the connections between my thoughts, feelings, and then the visual reminder. Although I don’t write it down anymore, reflecting became a habit and I find it helps on days when things are not working out for me or I am having a stressful day due to work pressure.
    With your DLR, finding the time for users, colleagues, and other stakeholders to share their feedback can be challenging. We are all busy and this can fall on side and forgotten. Since your DLR is a component of students’ orientation, have you considered adding a survey after they completed the orientation activities? Your team could use the surveys to continually improve the orientation experience.
    Thanks, Kathy for sharing your thoughts.

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