Instructional System, Design and Technology

Educators and students often use such terms as “instructional system”, “instructional design,” and “instructional technology” interchangeably, and it is necessary to define these terms appropriately while comparing and contrasting their aspects.

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Instructional systems can be defined as a specific arrangement or organization of appropriate human and material resources, methods, and tools to help a student in achieving the learning and instructional objectives through a chain of transformations (Dick, Carey, and Carey 54). In an instructional system, people, including educators and students, materials, including computers, books, and teaching resources, and instructional methods and strategies work to assist in reaching the goal for a learner. Therefore, instructional systems can be discussed as perfectly working arrangements that include carefully selected elements connected to form one system.

Instructional Design is referred to as the development and implementation of instructional systems in the concrete learning environment according to a certain model. To implement developed instructional systems in educational organizations appropriately, it is necessary to integrate them while using an effective model. One of the most actively used instructional design models is the ADDIE model (Dick, Carey, and Carey 82). The stages of the model, such as analysis, design, development, implementation, and evaluation allow the complete integration of the instructional design into practice to achieve educational and learning objectives.

Instructional Technology is defined as specific teaching aids or tools that are used to achieve the concrete instructional goal within the developed instructional system and according to the proposed instructional design model. In the large context, the instructional technology includes any methods, strategies, and tools used by educators (Keppell 28). In the narrow context, instructional technology primarily includes modern digital tools and interactive resources effective to promote student learning (Dick, Carey, and Carey 32). It is also important to note that the application of instructional technology is also systematic.

While comparing and contrasting the discussed terms, it is necessary to state that these terms are similar regarding the application of the systematic approach. In addition to the instructional system, the instructional design and the instructional technology are also systematic in their character because of depending on the instructional system as the base. From this point, these terms can be viewed as strongly connected as elements of one model that can be used by educators to achieve the instructional or learning goals (see Figure 1).

The Connection between Instructional System, Instructional Design, and Instructional Technology.
Figure 1. The Connection between Instructional System, Instructional Design, and Instructional Technology.

However, it is also important to pay attention to the fact that these terms cannot be used interchangeably because they represent different processes or objects utilized in education. The instructional system is not the same as the instructional design because the instructional design should be regarded as the practical implementation of the developed instructional system in the educational organization with the help of models similar to the ADDIE one.

In its turn, instructional technology is a method or tool that can be utilized by educators to realize the stages of the instructional design and to make the instructional system work because the instructional technology is an important element of the system. From this point, the terms are different in their meanings and practical use despite being connected.

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Works Cited

Dick, Walter, Lou Carey, and James Carey. The Systematic Design of Instruction. New York: Pearson Education, 2014. Print.

Keppell, Michael. Instructional Design: Case Studies in Communities of Practice: Case Studies in Communities of Practice. New York: Idea Group Inc., 2007. Print.

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