About five years ago, I started saying to anyone who would listen that there aren't enough courses on Instructional Design. I myself was taking the Open Polytechnic course on Elearning and i was going through the frustration of having to take everything they taught me about using elearning in a tertiary setting and trying to apply it to corporate rapid elearning. For someone who still felt new and inexperienced, that was a challenge.
Then, as the owner of a small business, I needed to hire or subcontract other instructional designers. The applications and even results I got were varied. I was shocked at the powerpoint styles, the inconsistent text formats, the heavy content - some of which we had to totally redo before the client saw it. On the other hand I hired others who could create a thing of beauty but needed me to deal with the client to get out the essential information. I found out that it was a common problem for the elearning to be content based - actually literally, the policy content put online. (Please note even I have done this in the past - mea culpa). And this was putting managers off - elearning content was boring, compliance based and often ineffective - elearning was getting a bad name.
I realised that my background in IT sales had actually given me a head start - I already knew how to elicit the information I needed to figure out the solution they needed. What I found natural at this point was actually a learned skill - I had just learned it in another industry. I also saw how keen everyone was to learn more just as I did - attending conferences, events, reading blogs. So I decided to do something about it.
After a few years of gathering content, in between working to pay the bills and with help from a few friends (Anna Kingston, Michelle Childs, Miranda Verswijvelen and without doubt the NZATD influence), the IDEA Academy is finally live.
The idea is to add courses every year until we are covering the gamut of learning that a new Instructional Designer or Elearning Developer might want to know. This year its Instructional Design for Elearning, next year its UX and Graphic Design, then Scenario Design and Learning Activities with both a design and a development thread. This Academy is not designed as a profit making venture (although wouldn't that be a nice surprise); its designed to help the industry set new standards, keep improving and give elearning back its good name.
The course is done in Moodle and will take about 2-4 hours of study each week for 10 weeks. It includes a case study, examples of elearning, learning theory and models of application and project based assessments. In addition it contains a heavy smattering of social learning, not only allowing learners to share their experience and learn from others, but teaching them how to stop and reflect on their design and application. It focuses more on rapid learning but also has some broad coverage of other tools and when to use them. Learn more at the following link https://www.workbright.co.nz/idea.html