MultiMedia Authoring and GUI

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Instructional Design

Instructional Design is relatively a young discipline. The purpose of designing instruction is to plan and create situations that enhance learning opportunities of the individuals.This means that the instruction has to be planned if it is to be effective and designed in some systematic way. It is a young profession deriving its inspiration and contents from areas of communication, psychology, media etc. to form its own theory.

  • According to Mukopadhyay (2001) 'Instructional Science provides the theoretical construct to the process of instruction'. 'Instructional Technology is the applied aspect of Instructional Science based on Instructional Design'.
  • The meaning of Instructional Design is indicated by the word 'Design' itself. Design has been claimed as a science by itself. (van Patten, 1989).
  • In layman's language, 'Instructional Design means the plan of action with a purpose'. For our understanding in this section we will describe instructional design as a separate entity, which is separate from Instructional Science and Technology. Instructional Design is a discipline of study and has evolved over the last forty years as a science.Instructional Design simply means using a systematic process to understand a human performance problem, figuring out what to do about it and then doing something about it (McArdle, 1991).

Instructional Design is the science of creating detailed specifications for the development, evaluation and maintenance of situations which facilitate the learning (Richey, 1986). Instructional Design is the entire process of analysis of learning needs and goals and the development of a delivery system to meet the needs (Briggs, 1977). In simple words, instructional design is a pedagogic or teaching device that makes instruction as well as the instructional material more engaging, effective and efficient. The statement .whereas physicians engineer health, architects engineer space, instructional designers engineer human performance. (van Patten, 1989) focuses on the importance of instructional design Learning theories have significant bearing on instructional design, as there is a logical development from learning to instruction. Instructional design optimizes learning outcomes while learning theories are the backbone of any instructional design. Instructional design is the articulation or the manifestation of the learning theories, and its main aim is to optimize learning by using the known theories of learning.

Learning Theories

Learning theories influence Instructional Design in a significant way. Learning theory becomes an essential element in the preparation of instructional design professionals because they permeate all dimensions of instructional design (Schiffman, 1991). There is no one single theory which designers keep in mind while designing the instructional strategies and content. Ertmer and Newby (1993) feel that the

  • Behavioural approach can effectively facilitate mastery of the content,
  • Cognitive strategies are useful in teaching problem solving tactics, and
  • Constructivist strategies are suited for dealing with ill defined problems.


John B. Watson Ivan Pavlov E. L. Thorndike B. F. Skinner

Behavioural researches have been conducted on animals but are related to human behaviour. Based on observable changes in behaviour which can be measured. Learning results from the classical conditioning of simple reflexes. Learning is the formation of a connection between stimulus and response.

Behaviourists emphasize changes in behaviour as the outcome of learning. Behaviourist principle of reinforcement, retention and transfer of learning are important design considerations, as learning is facilitated by reinforcing the correct performances. Statements of behavioural objectives allow the learners to know specifically when they have achieved their objectives. In this way, learners can monitor their own progress. The knowledge of objectives serves as a reinforcing agent. The frequency of reinforcement is also a design issue. Presenting the content of the instruction in smaller steps, followed by testing and reinforcing performance immediately, does this. Retention of the information for the learners is also important for the instructional designer. Materials that provide more reinforcing activities help in the retention of what has been learnt.


Jean Piaget Lev Vygotsky Bruer Jerome David Ausubel

Cognitive Psychologists studied human behaviour. Theory is based on the thought process behind the behaviour. Learning involves associations established through contiguity and repetition. Stressed on the role of reinforcement which provides feed back about the correctness of responses. Learning involves subsuming new material to existing cognitive structure.

Cognitive Psychologists Piaget, Bruner and Ausubel contend that learning is an internal process that cannot be observed directly. Learners first remember and then retrieve information from the memory. Cognitivists emphasize on how the human mind works. They put particular emphasis on memory. The implication of this theory for the instructional designers is that they could use various techniques like chunking, mnemonics and meaningful organization of content and give practice for storing and retrieving information. Practice implies provision of increased opportunities to the learners for reward and reinforcement. Cognitive structures are created through practice, which leads to an efficient use of long-term memory. For example, instructional designers include pictures used in video programmes or practice exercises in the self-learning material that offer opportunities for practice. Practice is important in learning cognitive tasks as well as motor skills.


  • George Herbert Mead
  • D. H. Jonassen
  • D.N. Perkins

Learners construct their own perspective of the world, through individual experiences and schema. Learners construct their own knowledge. Learners are encouraged to search for other related relevant information. Prepare the learner to problem solving ambiguous situations.

Constructivism promote an open ended learning experience where methods and results of learning are not easily measured and are different for each learner. The implication of constructivism for the instructional designer is that the learners should attach themselves to the content domains. Constructivists believe that learning occurs when it is situated, contextual, problem based, social and authentic.

Models of Instructional Design

Gagne-Briggs Model

  • Categorize learning outcomes
  • Organize instructional events for each kind of learning outcome
  • There are nine instructional events
  • Events are tailored to the kind of outcome to be achieved
  • Model is adapted to Web Based Instruction

The model by David Merrill (Component Display Theory) is based on the following assumptions

  • Different classes of learning outcomes require different procedures for teaching and assessment
  • Teaches individual concepts
  • Classifies objectives on two dimensions
  • Formats instruction to provide student directed teaching

This model Dick and Carey

  • Uses a systems approach for designing instruction
  • Identifies instructional goals in the beginning and ends up with summative evaluation
  • Is applicable for K-12 to business to government

Hannafin and Peck :The Model has three phases

  • Need assessment is performed in the first phase
  • Second is the design phase
  • Instruction is developed and implemented in the last phase
  • All the phases involve a process of evaluation and revision

Gerlach and Ely: The Model

  • Includes strategies for selecting and including media within instruction
  • Is suited to higher education


Universal Multimedia Application Needs

A Universal Multimedia Application: Let us visualize the User Screen for a Universal Multimedia Application:

  1. Document: Hypertext, Hypermedia
  2. Images, hyper images i.e when a portion of image is clicked we get details of that part / an expanded view of the part or a new image / document explaining what it is.
  3. Video Conferencing.
  4. Remote desktops
  5. OLE i.e Object linking and embedding
  6. Email window, Chat window
  7. Playing Audio/ vedio
  8. Navigation Controls
  9. Screen setting controls

Thus there is need of :

  • Substantial CPU power
  • Digital Signal Processing
  • Bandwidth needs
  • Synchronization needs

System Design Principles for Multimedia

Ideally, the system design will be compatible with the following principles:

  • Open architecture — support of established industry standards, especially to allow addition of future modules
  • Scalability — so the technical infrastructure can grow in audience size and sophistication
  • Global potential reach — so that E-Learning solutions serve the largest base of end-users, with both synchronous and asynchronous distance delivery
  • Integration — seamless front-end and back-end connection to enterprise resources
  • Flexible — open to emerging new technologies and use of new best practices
  • Rapid and timely — complexity of the system is controlled so that the enterprise can reap business benefits quickly.

Business Needs for Design

There are several business needs to be addressed by an Multimedia Solutions. The design of the system architecture must be oriented to business needs, which include: cost, access, modularity & personalization, timeliness, relevance, and accountability.

1.Cost: Workforce training comes at a price. These costs must be controlled and reduced or eliminated where possible. For instance, travel expenses associated with attending a week-long course represent a huge expense for a company. By moving at least a portion of this learning online, the cost savings can be significant. This is especially true if there are gains in efficiencies of learning also achieved by a blended approach.

2.The functions of the LMS and Collaboration services: These are especially important in achieving these cost savings. Further, there must be cost control in producing new E-Learning modules, so that existing content is reused and repurposed rather than continually re-created. The function of the LCMS and the Assessment services are essential to controlling costs of these workflows and assets.

3.Access / Scalability: Instructor-led training involves constraints that restrict access to learning. These constraints relate to time, geography and availability. The E-Learning system scales to make instruction available 24/7, to hundreds or thousands of learners simultaneously, and at their convenience. It is the portal site strategy of Internet / intranet which makes this access and scalability possible.

4.Modularity & Personalization: The goal of E-Learning is to provide a highly personalized, and therefore an optimally effective, learning experience. This is achieved through modularity of system design at every level — that allows the end-user to access the particular services or content that they require. Personalization is achieved by pre-assessments and other selection criteria that enable courses, lessons and learning events adjust to the profile and needs of a individual learner.

5.The User Management, LMS and LCMS services: These work together to achieve personalization. Building a modular architecture of web-based services allows incremental improvement of the technology infrastructure that in turn incrementally improves the users experience.

6.Timeliness: The goal of E-Learning is to provide access to courses on demand 24/7 at the learners convenience. Prior to E-Learning resources, once an ILT course was delivered, it might be weeks or months before it would be offered again.

7.The availability of curriculum resources depends upon the combined workflow of authors and content experts pouring their content contributions into the LCMS. With effective workflow management, the E-Learning resources can be rapidly developed.

8.Relevance: A E-Learning systems customer satisfaction is based on its relevance to meeting their learning goals. By allowing learners to select the information and instruction that they need, and by providing the prescribed learning target for the individual based on pre-assessment, the course offerings will be most relevant to each learner. The User Management, LMS, LCMS and Assessment services enable this personalization to be achieved.

9.Accountability: Accountability is not just an issue for learners, but also for instructors, managers, authors, content providers, and administrators. Ideally, the E-Learning system will generate metrics and automated reports for each of these end-users. Learner progress can be tracked with online post-assessments. Learners are able to provide specific feedback to instructors on each small increment of learning. Managers are able to create individualized roadmaps of learning to ensure that their employees master the skills they need. Authors are able to determine which Learning Objects are being used and to what effect. Content providers can be held accountable for reusing and repurposing existing content.

Welcome to the Course !