We are seeking candidates for Instructional Design positions. These team members design educational programs and courses using new types of science-based active-learning. Each session of each course includes a mixture of content delivery (e.g., in lectures, videos), active learning exercises (e.g., role playing, problem solving, debate), and assessments (both formative and summative). Applicants should be passionate about education and about educational innovation, have excellent communication skills, be open to new ways of teaching, be self-directed, and be flexible and adaptable.
The specific responsibilities are as follows:
I. Create detailed lesson plans for synchronous or asynchronous courses
Lesson plans for synchronous courses are developed as Google Slide decks. A slide presentation typically constitutes a lecture, with detailed Presenter Notes beneath each slide. The lecture focuses on helping students achieve specific learning objectives (particular skills and knowledge), as specified in the syllabus. Video clips can be included in lectures, but all such materials must be open source.
The lecture component is developed in collaboration with a Subject Matter Expert.
Polls and other quick active-learning exercises are inserted into the lecture in order to keep students engaged.
Breakout Groups (of 2 – 6 students, as appropriate) follow each segment of a lecture, during which active learning occurs.
The active learning exercises implement the principles described in the book Active Learning Online: Five Principles that Make Online Courses Come Alive (S. M. Kosslyn, 2020). Instructional designers will receive training on how to use these principles.
Assessments and assignments are also created.
Lesson plans for asynchronous courses are similar, with recorded materials and/or readings for the content delivery component (typically loaded on the Canvas LMS).
Asynchronous courses also involve Interactive Learning Objects, which engage students even when they are working alone.
The biggest difference between synchronous and asynchronous courses is in how active learning exercises are designed; the challenge is to devise ways to engage students in the material at their own schedule and convenience.
II. Meet weekly with the faculty team who are developing courses
Instructional Designers meet weekly to review progress and obstacles to progress and to share best practices.
III. Iterate on each lesson plan with an Editor, who will help ensure that the lesson plans are clear and comprehensive
Each lesson plan begins with an outline, typically developed in collaboration with a Subject Matter Expert.
The Editor provides feedback on the outline.
The outline in turn leads to a fleshed out lesson plan, with the content delivery component, active learning component, and assessment component.
The lesson plan is submitted to the Editor, who provides feedback; the Instructional Designer and Editor then iterate to improve the lesson plan.
The final lesson plan is implemented as a Google Slides deck (for synchronous courses) or a Module in Canvas (for asynchronous courses).
At least a M.A. in a relevant field
At least two years teaching experience preferred
Familiarity with the Canvas LMS (for asynchronous courses) preferred