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Reviewed by Suzanne Cowles for Readers' Favorite
Instructional Design for E-Learning: Essential Guide to Creating Successful E-Learning Courses by Marina Arshavskiy is an informative how-to manual for creating ISD (Instructional Systems Design) classes. Divided into four easy to follow sections, the concise guide combines theoretical and practical knowledge, skills, tools and exercises for developing effective courses. Arshavskiy demonstrates her own professional experience in a handy desk reference for beginners to the advanced. She does this by merging art and science, concentrating on “the how” and giving solid advice for best practices. Anyone that needs to design an e-Learning course will find the advice useful. Each detailed chapter explores introductory theories, the industry history, models, learning styles and objectives, memory, the nine events of instruction, creating a design document, storyboards, scripts, quality assurance, implementation, evaluation and assessments. Combining a variety of methods to make the lessons interactive, dynamic and fun while incorporating technology and multimedia so students retain the knowledge and perform better on the job is the hallmark of this book. Moreover, if all that was not enough information, there is more. Arshavskiy discusses the importance of planning, how to divide content into twenty-minute lessons, how to organize the materials and how to present the course. Following this approach, each class will be unique.
Even though I am not an instructor, I found this educational book to be very engaging and interesting. As it is laid out in a logical sequence, I really think I could create a professional development class for my company now. Thanks to Instructional Design for E-Learning: Essential Guide to Creating Successful E-Learning Courses by Marina Arshavskiy, I now have the tools and confidence to do so. I especially loved the part about incorporating games, videos and audio into a storyboard to make learning enjoyable. This is recommended for anyone in the field of learning and development of Internet-based classes or just the hobbyist doing a website podcast.