With 20 cases, this is a thorough revision of the only ID casebook available. The thirty-six richly-detailed, authentic cases are all written by practicing instructional designers and have been carefully chosen to provide enough depth to develop competence. Alphabetical arrangement by instructional designer hides case problem behind the anonymity of the designer, keeps the case titles from alerting learners to the issues involved, and challenges them to identify and define the challenge on their own. A thoughtful introduction to the book written by the editors speaks to the readers directly and takes them, step-by-step, through the case study method explaining the study of cases in supportive, accessible language that will allay any fears of users unfamiliar with this type of learning. By giving readers opportunities to encounter many different challenges in a variety of settings (corporate, K-12, higher education) involving a range of issues and subjects, these cases effectively bridge the gulf between the complexities of the design world and the principles taught in ID courses. For future instructional designers.
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It is possible that a person who is good at learning something from
So began a graduate student at the end of one of our instructional design (ID) courses, when asked to describe the value of analyzing and discussing ID case studies. This student's comments summarize our primary purpose for this text: to provide students with opportunities to practice what they learn in class, to bridge the gap between the complex reality of the design world and the foundational principles taught in traditional textbooks.
Although ID educators have recognized the potential of the case method of teaching in the education of instructional designers for a number of years, there have been relatively few materials available that help ID educators actually implement this approach in their courses. Most educators do not have the time or expertise to create ID cases for their courses yet would use such cases if they were available. The ID CaseBook offers ID educators a rich resource of authentic design problems that can be used in either introductory or advanced design courses, as well as in more specialized courses related to any of the specific design steps or issues. Because of our commitment to the case method of instruction, we felt a sense of urgency to make case materials readily available, so that ID educators can begin to use cases in their classes, immediately as well as relatively easily.
Our book arises out of a view of ID as a complex, ill-structured domain of knowledge, for which there is a methodology and a set of guidelines but not a single set of procedures that will guarantee success. This view of ID recognizes that professional ID competence requires more than technical expertise. Although some design situations may involve well-structured and clearly defined problems that will benefit from the application of a set of technical procedures, many more situations are ill-structured and poorly defined. In addition to the necessary technical skills and knowledge, such situations depend on the artistry and skill of ID professionals to operate creatively and effectively in these ambiguous, uncertain, and open-ended contexts. Given the constraints of time and other resources, how does an instructor convey the complexity and ill-structured nature of ID while teaching the technical skills that are prerequisite for ID practice? We believe, as do many others, that the case-teaching approach has the potential to help bridge this gap by situating the learning of technical ID skills within authentic contexts.
There are probably as many definitions of case-based instruction as there are ways of implementing it. In this text, we use an approach to case studies that is based on the business school model—that is, case studies are problem-centered descriptions of design situations, developed from the actual experiences of instructional designers.
The cases in this book are designed to be dilemma oriented—that is, each case ends before the solution is clear. Students are expected to evaluate the available evidence, to judge alternative interpretations and actions, and to experience the uncertainty that often accompanies design decisions. In particular, we hope that, by analyzing the cases presented in this book, ID students will learn how to identify ID problems and subproblems, to recognize the importance of context in resolving such problems, and to develop, justify, and test alternative plans for resolving ID problems.
The ID CaseBook is divided into three parts. In the introduction (Part I), we provide students with suggestions and strategies for how to approach learning from case-based instruction. Although it is our experience that students are typically excited about using case studies in instruction, because of their unfamiliarity with this approach, they often feel a little apprehensive as well. We have found that, by providing helpful suggestions up-front, students' initial concerns are considerably lessened.
Part II includes 36 cases, situated in a variety of educational and business contexts. Case titles bear the name of the instructional designer in the case and are arranged alphabetically, by title, to avoid alerting students to the nature of the issues addressed. This decision was based on our belief that students need to be able to identify and define presenting problems before they can begin to solve them. To ease the selection process for instructors, however, a matrix is provided in the Instructor's Guide that outlines the primary and secondary issues of each case, as well as the specific content and context of each.
In Part III, we invite students to reflect on their own case-learning experiences, and, as beginning instructional designers, on the usefulness of the case method as a teaching and learning strategy. In addition, we invite students to explore some future possibilities for case-based instruction—in particular, the use of the World Wide Web as a delivery medium.
FEATURES OF THE SECOND EDITION
The second edition of The ID CaseBook consists of 36 ID case studies, representing 20 new cases as well as 16 of your favorite cases from the first edition. The increased number of cases in the second edition allows us to present a broad range of issues, content, and contexts. For example, there are several new cases dealing with issues related to the design of instruction for online delivery, reflecting current emphases in our field. In addition, we have significantly increased the number of cases that focus on the selection of appropriate instructional strategies. Other issues that receive increased attention in this edition include contextual analysis, project management, change management, evaluation, and ethical decisions in the design of instruction.
The increased size of the second edition also allows us to include a greater range of case contexts. For example, as requested by some reviewers and adopters of the first edition, we have significantly increased the number of cases situated in K-12 settings. In addition, the number, as well as the range, of cases set in corporate environments have increased. As in the first edition, each case is based on a real experience encountered by the case authors. By compiling these experiences into one book, we offer students the combined professional experiences of some of the best scholars and practitioners in our profession.
As in the first edition, each chapter begins with a case narrative. The case narrative includes relevant background information for the case, including the problem context, key players, available resources, and existing constraints. In addition, each case includes relevant data, presented in a variety of forms and formats. In this edition, however, we have added two sets of discussion questions at the end of each case to stimulate students' thinking and to provide a focus for class discussion. The first set of questions—"Preliminary Analysis Questions"—asks students to identify and discuss issues, to consider the issues from multiple perspectives, to develop a plan of action to resolve problems, and/or to specify possible consequences resulting from their recommended plan. The second set of questions—"Implications for ID Practice"—requires students to think more broadly about the issues presented in the case from the point of view of ID theory and practice.
The updated Instructor's Guide accompanying the second edition includes the following key features:
"The ID CaseBook pioneers what I hope will be a professional case tradition in ID that will convey the wisdom of practice and the complexity of design. Ertmer and Quinn have set a standard against which future ID casework will be measured." -- Joan Mazur, University of Kentucky "There is no substitute for application of our theories to problems in the real world. This text puts the real world right "in your face" as class members puzzle their way through true-to-life situations." -- Nick Eastmond, Utah State University "I find that the rich contexts presented make ID principles, concepts, and procedures relevant for newcomers to the field, yet are of sufficient sophistication to challenge and ring true for more experienced learners." -- Patricia L. Smith, University of Oklahoma "The ID CaseBook provides a way to contextualize the instruction of instructional design skills and techniques. Moreover, it lends itself to dealing with issues confronting advanced as well as novice designers." -- Rita C. Richey, Wayne State University
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