The primary function of instructional designers is to define instructional content, prepare objectives, and select and sequence learning activities. Instructional designers design and develop interventions that result in lasting behavioral change and enhanced organizational effectiveness. A skilled ID professional should have a good understanding of the learning patterns of people. Depending on the learners and situation, different learning theories may apply. Experts have identified three basic learning styles: auditory, visual, and kinesthetic or tactile learners. Auditory learners like to hear the instructions, visual learners prefer written instructions, and kinesthetic or tactile learners prefer activities that will allow them to touch things. The instructional design (ID) professional must have an understanding of the strengths and weaknesses of each learning theory to optimize their use in appropriate instructional design strategy.
The role of the ID professional is equally important in all organizations. Learning is a continuous process. Rapid changes in technology, demographics, and globalization dictate the need for ID. As new skills are required, organizations depend on instructor-led training programs to develop these skills and put them in practice. Today’s economy may not allow all organizations to have a budget for instructor-led programs. However, it is not impossible to provide just-in-time learning to all staff members at the right time of their careers with consistent quality by developing performance support tools, or job aids, following the same ID process. When learning happens, people enjoy their work, are more productive, increase value to customers, and are happier overall.