E-catalogue: An Innovative Instructional Design

This article introduces an out-of-the box idea in designing an instructional material. More often than not, books are used to contain lessons or bits of information that teachers would like to impart to the learners.

However, the rise of social networking and e-learning prompted Dr. Alvior to design an instructional material that would address the teachers’ and students’ needs to keep abreast with current developments in educational technology – the e-learning approach.

My doctorate program at West Visayas State University in Iloilo City, Philippines requires graduate students to create something new or come up with creative ideas. This task consists part of my training because an advanced graduate course, i. e., a doctorate degree, requires students to come up with their own theories (see theory testing and theory building). Thus, as I specialize on curriculum development, I have to innovate an instructional design without sacrificing the essence of the teaching and learning process. I call this the “e-catalogue.”

Definition of eCatalogue

According to Meriam Webster Dictionary, a catalogue is a complete enumeration of items arranged systematically with descriptive details. It is also defined as a pamphlet or book that contains a list of information.

In my instructional design, I operationally defined it and added the word electronic. Thus, e-catalogue is a pamphlet that contains information for teaching and learning. Specifically, it includes the learning objectives, motivation, procedure, evaluation (assessment), and enrichment activity.

Features of E-catalogue

As previously stated, the e-catalogue contains the following information:

1. Learning objectives

This e-catalogue is taken from a syllabus that contains the skills needed by the students to succeed in the workplace. For example, if the subject is English for Business Communication, students need to develop their skills on how to write an opinion letter, order letter, letter of request, among others.

Likewise, the skills to be developed are translated into learning objectives using the three domains: cognitive, affective and psychomotor. Cognitive refers to conscious mental processes such as thinking, understanding, learning, and remembering. Affective pertains to a student’s feelings, moods, and attitudes while psychomotor relates to learning that entails thinking with action or movement to demonstrate physical skills.

2. Writing prompts

writing on board

Writing prompts are sets of instructions for writing. Prompts provide information as to whom the students should address the letter (the intended readers), and as to why the students are asking or giving the information (purpose). Likewise, authentic or real-world situations are integrated in the prompt. Students should address the prompts well by portraying and/or giving only the information that is asked of them.

3. Writing Activities and Assessment

Writing activities involve discussion of materials taken from newspapers, comic strips, puzzles, blogs, power point presentations, documentary films, internet and others). The purpose of this activity is expose the students to the different types of media so that they won’t easily get bored with the lessons. In addition, the writing drills progress from simple to complex. Revisions start with words, then phrases, and finally, sentences. Also, it uses the process approach in writing, that is, 1) pre-writing, 2) writing, and 3) post writing in which students’ outputs are marked using a holistic rubric.

Other Features

An e-catalogue is easy to use and has no cultural biases. Students can easily understand the concept because it is designed as to what, why and how a particular topic like business letter should be written by providing examples and activities.

Due to the fact that most of the students nowadays don’t like to read a lot, the presentation of the lesson is capsulized. Students need not filter the information that is deemed important for them.

So, why don’t you try this? Sometimes, it’s good to do something different.

This innovation in instructional design was presented in 2007 to Dr. Bibiana Espina of West Visayas State University.

© 2014 June 4 M. G. Alvior

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