ID Bookshelf Part 1: Start With These

If you’re like me about a year ago, trying to learn about Instructional Design as a career, I’d bet that you have dozens of windows open on your laptop, computer, or phone, all presenting exciting information, but taking you on a detour.

 If you then decided to focus your search and dive deeper, you might have selected some podcasts or Youtube channels to follow. You might have even enrolled in the IDOL courses Academy to guide you through your journey. 

And then when you get a bit more confident, you want to read books to really feel knowledgeable. 

 I am with you. I was there. 

I used to solely read fiction; I loved stories about unusual characters and different cultures. I still do. But when I started transitioning into Instructional Design from teaching, I went on a Non-Fiction binge.

If you ever googled “Instructional Design books”, you have come across lists of 10, 20, 40+ books, each of which could take weeks to finish when ...

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7tapsĀ® is all it Takes: Trendy Microlearning

7taps is All it Takes to Realize 99% Completion Rates*

7taps® is a brand-new authoring tool featuring a stack of cards you customize for microlearning. It launched in October of 2020, confirming a 99% course completion rate for its corporate training.* Whoa! What? 99% completed the compliance course?* Who gets that kind of result?! Well, before 7taps ®, the answer was "no one." 

Now, the answer could be "you," and it could also be "everyone!" 

Each of us has an investment in technology and tech-related entertainment. As such, you are probably familiar with trivia cards. Well, as you'll learn in IDOL courses Academy online cards are not just for trivia anymore. Now, you can add another tool to your instructional designer toolbox as 7taps helps you create online card stacks framed as microlearning. Brilliant, right? 

Microlearning is a Hot Topic in 2021

In weekly learning and development meetings worldwide, training managers and teams are clamoring to...

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Power of the Portfolio: The Key to Becoming an IDOL

You’re thinking of becoming an instructional designer, or maybe you’re ready to start applying for jobs. You think to yourself, how can I make myself stand out to employers? How can I build confidence as a new ID? The answer: a portfolio. 

Yes, really.

The power of a portfolio unleashes all of your darkest fears. Creating a portfolio allows you to take that leap into the unknown, and scream, “this is me and I want everyone to know it!” The first step to getting over imposter syndrome is to believe in yourself; so what better way to put yourself out there than with an organized, visual representation of who you are? 

Who are you exactly? You are a learner, curriculum developer, problem solver, eLearning developer, and instructional designer - and so much more!

 

Here’s a little backstory. 

I am new to corporate and higher Ed instructional design. Most of my pre-ID professional experience was as a high school science teacher. After...

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ID Podcasts: Master Your Skills While Shopping, Running, or Cooking

 I used to have a really long commute from the South-West of London all the way to Zone 4 in the East. About 40 minutes of these each way was on the underground with no reliable internet connection. I read books and I like reading, but holding the rail, my bag, my coat and the book with just two hands could be a bit of a logistic exercise at times. No wonder that I am a massive fan of podcasts.

 

Podcasts are awesome

  1. They’re free. 
  2. They’re light and portable. You only need a phone and your earphones, which I would not leave the house without anyway.
  3. They can be downloaded. Therefore you don’t rely on your internet connection and your phone plan. 
  4. They’re hand-free. So you could just put an episode on and carry on washing the dishes, painting the guest room or changing a nappy.
  5. If you subscribe, the new episodes are automatically marked in your app. No need to look for new content. 
  6. You can find a podcast on any topic. 
  7. ...
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First Time Using Storyline?

 When I was starting the IDOL courses Academy back in January, the #doitmessy Two Week Challenge was starting and I was sort of nervous/excited to start.  During those two weeks, I made a course using Articulate Rise®, which I found to be super user friendly!  At first, I was a little hesitant and spoke about it on a Facebook post.  Someone then commented: “Wait until you get into Storyline®!”.  I immediately was like “AHHHH!!! This is going to be hard!! I’m NOT prepared for this AT ALL!”  I was absolutely dreading this part.  But, I knew it’s all part of the ID game. It’s like a necessity in the ID world.  

Then, the Storyline for IDOLS® course came out and let me tell you!  It was like the heavens were shining light on my self-doubt.  It came equipped with several modules and a practice file.  It was just what I needed to relieve my stress. And earning a...

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Diving In to the ID Culture

 Prior to January 25, 2021, I planned for a substitute teacher for my seventh grade English classes (which any teacher knows is no small task), so that I could spend the day getting a strong start on my new IDOL Courses journey as a member of the sixth cohort. I was ready to do this! However, in the following days and weeks, attempting to juggle my teacher workload with IDOL modules and creating assets seemed impossible. It was easy to feel overwhelmed and paralyzed by my lack of knowledge and experience. I definitely wrestled with “perfection paralysis”, as validated so beautifully by Tabatha Dragonberry in her blog article from April 2, 2021.

I felt like a clumsy, awkward teenager trying to learn a new dance, a new style, and even a new language. I was attempting to blend in with a new culture, but in looking around, realized how much I still needed to learn before I could become a genuine part of this IDOL culture.

It was not long before I discovered...

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Visual Design Part 1: How to Get Started

 

When I was interviewing for my first Instructional Designer job, I was asked many times about what I thought were the three most important things that made an eLearning course good. There’s really a lot that I could have listed. However, I always mentioned good visual design as one of the crucial things to get right. And they agreed.

For several reasons. I am only going to focus on two.

We know that first impressions matter. Besides, many times our learners are not really excited about taking the course, even if it’s not compliance training. So we don’t want to make a bad impression and possibly alienate them. They say “don’t judge a book by its cover”, but when we are browsing for a book, a film, or even a new beverage, we form an opinion based on the visuals. Have you ever decided against watching a film just because the graphics looked off? We need to gain the learners’ interest, not put them off. 

The other reason is that...

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My ID Love Affair with YouTube

Inspired by a social media post by IDOL Course Academy Alumna, Santana Kennedy.

Video informs and entertains people, and, good or bad, today most people prefer to watch a video rather than read a page of text. ~ Lisa Lubin

We know what Youtube is and we know how popular it is. But how can we IDOLs leverage the power of this awesome video-sharing platform? To some degree, it is necessary to use Youtube to advance ourselves professionally. 

Personally, I love YouTube in and outside of my work as an IDOL. In fact, I wouldn’t be an IDOL without it. It’s free, easy to use, and accessible; plus, you can reach a lot of people if used properly. I am confident that other professionals relied too on YouTube to view, create, learn, sell, and sometimes entertain themselves with the video content provided on there. 

 

Let me share some mind-blowing statistics on how powerful YouTube is.

  • Videos are a consumers’ favorite type of content from a brand on social...
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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 not...

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Interviewing: Why am I Not Making It Past the First Round?

Applying for jobs is exhausting, stressful and soul-destroying. These could have been my words, but instead, they came from Google. Even Google understands every jobseeker’s frustration at spending time on tailored Resumes and Cover Letters to carefully analysed Job Adverts only to be rejected. Repeatedly.

 

 

When I started my job search, I felt confident. I was ready. I had a full portfolio with several assets, I optimised my LinkedIn and I ditched my teacher Resume for a fresh, Instructional Designer CV that I had engineered to specific jobs, following Jay Lash’s method.

 It worked! I was contacted by a few companies who had liked my profile, thought I had potential and were impressed by my experience. I was excited.

As you can guess, I didn’t get any of those jobs. Not only that, I didn’t even make it past the first round of interviews.

I knew I had to change something and that’s when I came across IDOL Academy Member, Niya...

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