The Job Search Journey

 It goes without saying that the job search can be a daunting process. Some may describe it as a roller coaster ride of ups and downs, but since I had to work so hard to get to the “ups”, I prefer to describe it as a long journey with steep hills and deep valleys. I learned early in the process that making a career change was no stroll in the park.

After I enrolled in the sixth IDOL courses Academy cohort in January, 2021, I found it difficult to put all of the time and effort that I needed into developing my skills as an IDOL as I juggled my teacher responsibilities. I wondered when and how I would ever find the time to do a serious job search including answering recruiter contacts and interviewing. The thought of another short summer leading to yet another year in the classroom, and putting off my career change, just felt wrong, so I took a giant leap of faith and officially resigned from teaching at the end of May. 

My last day working as a teacher was...

Continue Reading...

Virtual Interviews: Tips and Tricks for Acing Them

We are all aware of the fact that Covid-19 has changed the landscape of pretty much everything; we are all doing things much differently than before. One of the things that have changed is the fact that many more people are, or want to,  work from home. A recent study by Pew Research Center found that nearly 71% of Americans are currently working from home and more people now are leaving their brick and mortar jobs in hopes of scoring a remote position. Additionally, many industries collapsed or had to close leaving many people unemployed. Currently, in America, there are 7.7 million people unemployed according to the Bureau of Labor Statistics. This means many people will be faced, or have been faced already, with completing virtual interviews. 

Let’s talk about how to manage those virtual interviews so that you can ace them and land a job!

I remember my very first virtual interview. I assumed we would all have our videos on; I was camera-ready. When the...

Continue Reading...

Interviewing: Questions to Ask the Interviewer

If you’re actively looking and applying for jobs, analysing job ads and preparing CVs might feel like a part-time job in itself. Then, when you get to the interview stage, there’s more preparation to do.

There are many websites out there to give you tips about nailing the interview. One of these is IDOL member Amanda Kulik’s blog where she shares many tips and useful links to help you prepare for the interview. You can even check out some common instructional designer interview questions. The Self Made Millennial Youtube channel is another useful resource to help you formulate your answers to some common questions. 

However, many of these resources focus on the questions the interviewer will ask you and how you can impress them. But, the interview is a two-way process. So, you should come prepared with some questions too, not only because you will be asked at the end if you have any, but also because you’d probably want to work out how the role...

Continue Reading...

Peer Review: Make It Work For Everyone

Using peer review is a great way to grow your skills, while also developing a strong community of colleagues. It’s a useful tool in any field, but it’s especially valuable for us as instructional designers because it shows a commitment to ongoing learning. 

I have used peer review in all kinds of professional contexts, from teaching in higher education to my work consulting with clients on instructional design projects now. My many experiences with peer review have included teaching others how to use it, as well as giving and receiving peer review from others. From these experiences, I have learned that peer review can be a rewarding experience for all involved, but only if it is practiced with the intention and care it deserves. These are my tips for effective peer review for everyone.

 

Tip #1: Peer Reviewers Are Expert Reviewers

Peer review is the process of peers giving structured, focused feedback on in-progress work. In this context,...

Continue Reading...

Working Full Time and Managing the IDOL courses Academy

When you are balancing your full-time job and the IDOL courses Academy, you may feel an overwhelming onslaught of emotions. You are excited to learn something new! You see hopes of being able to leave your current job or level up in an instructional design role. It’s also easy to feel overwhelmed when you add something new to your plate. 

My goal is to share the lessons I learned during the 8-week cohort and how I managed my time while working a full-time job along with several side jobs and a family.  It’s not a one size fits all approach by any means.  

  • Prioritize your time and figure out your WHY.

I knew when I signed up for the IDOL courses Academy, the 8-week cohort would fly by quickly.  But I didn’t realize how much I needed to prioritize my time in the Academy. My schedule was already jammed packed before I started the cohort, and trying to figure out how to fit it all in was a challenge.

I needed to focus on WHY I joined the ...

Continue Reading...

Perfection Paralysis

 Many people strive to be perfect. Social norms push people to have this belief that we are less than if everything isn't perfect. Trying to reach perfection can be paralyzing, and most of the time, we do nothing.

Do you know what perfection paralysis is?

A defense mechanism. It protects you from being seen as less than or not seen as entirely perfect. Feelings are complex, and perfectionism paralysis could be similar to the fear of rejection. Don't expect to win the first prize trophy the first time you do something. Practice doesn't make you perfect. Practice makes you better. Better than you were the first day you started. The work you produce the first year you are an instructional designer will probably be a little embarrassing the fifth year in your career (keep a copy to compare). This is called growth, and it's the best part of life.

Perfectionism paralysis comes in many forms for instructional designers:

  1. Primarily the Inability to start
  2. Fear of putting your work...
Continue Reading...

How to Use Any Technology

 Here’s something funny: 6 months ago, when I enrolled with the IDOL courses Academy, I didn’t know what HTML was. It’s funny, because, looking back, I still can’t believe how little I knew about technology. 

Two months later, I didn’t only fill that gaping hole about HTML, but I was copying CSS and Javascript codes to modify things on my website and add special functions to my Storyboard course. 

In two short, but very busy months, I built two websites with Google Sites, created videos with Powtoon, Camtasia, Biteable, and Vyond and I developed interactive courses with Genial.ly, Rise, and Storyline. None of which I had known much about before. I had not even heard of Canva, Visme, or Snagit either, yet I was now effortlessly designing images for my assets.

I am not here to boast. My point is that if I could do that, anyone can and I am happy to share some tips.

 

FIND SOME TIME

I think the best way to learn any tech is to find...

Continue Reading...

Am I Doing This Right?: IDOL Lessons Learned

 Hindsight is 20/20. Coincidentally 2020, is the year I decided to pivot and fully immerse myself into a career transition in instructional design. I joined IDOL Academy in September 2020. This wasn’t my first trip down the “what else can I possibly do with my career experience and education background” road. Years ago, I started an expensive certification course, which I enjoyed, but I had an opportunity to join a new school, develop a new program, and get paid more so I had to put that on hold. The new opportunity also brought out the same issues I’ve had with my career that made me want to jump ship the first time: burnout, limited career growth, feeling undervalued, and siloed in my classroom. Why did I do this? 

Starting IDOL courses Academy was the best decision I made to start my career transition journey. But it has not been the most of smooth ride for me. Working full time, parenting full time, and squeezing in the IDOL coursework is...

Continue Reading...

The Importance of Accountability Groups & Peer Review

Accountability is the glue that bonds commitment with results. ~ Will Craig

Starting out in instructional design a person may feel overwhelmed and lost. But there are secret weapons you can employ to help you reach your goal: Accountability Groups & Peer Review.

I was part of the the IDOL courses Academy's 4th cohort (June 2020). While I received lots of support and encouragement from the IDOL courses community and my peers, I would have not made much progress without my IDOL accountability group. They were divinely-sent as we all journeyed together to become IDOLs. They became a part of my success and I was to theirs. Even now, we still remain in contact with each other regularly. 

So, I want to share four benefits I’ve gained from being a part of an accountability group in the IDOL courses Academy:

1. Similar Starting Point - My IDOL accountability group consists of myself and four other ladies from different parts of the country. We all had little to no...

Continue Reading...

Soft Skills: Important to an Instructional Designer

One aspect of being an Instructional Designer that is rarely talked about is soft skills.

Soft skills, which can also be called emotional intelligence (EQ), are important to instructional designers because even though we may feel as though we are in a silo, we actually work with various people across different departments.  Instructional designers are constantly collaborating, giving or getting feedback, checking in with stakeholders, and communicating a message.  This means a level of comfort and skill is required when interacting and working with others.

Here are my top 3 soft skills important to the instructional designer role.

 

Empathy

One reason why educators make great instructional designers is because they are empathicIn fact, the first step an educator takes when teaching a class is to fully understand where their students are. An instructional designer is not any different. Knowing where the learners are starting from and understanding their...

Continue Reading...
1 2
Close

50% Complete

Enter your email below to get instructional design tips and tricks delivered straight to your inbox.