Why did you pursue a career in the instructional design and technology field?
I was interested in the psychology of learning and designing learning experiences, so I got a degree in Instructional Psychology and Technology. Being in the program led to getting an internship in the field, which I enjoyed a lot more than I thought I would. So that's where I am now.
What are some of your day-to-day responsibilities in your roles?
Recently my projects have revolved mainly around creating modules geared toward helping employees and clients use our company's software. I spend a lot of time working with project sponsors and SMEs to determine the desired learner competencies for the given subject, creating a scoping document to determine assessment items that will target those competencies, working with SMEs to create the questions, then fortifying the module with supporting information, video, interactions, etc.
How have you found your jobs? What advice do you have for someone trying to find a job in the instructional design and technology field?
I love my job. It's an awesome company that I would never have known existed if I hadn't seen an IP&T alum's email about a summer internship at his company that he sent out through the listserv. My advice would be to GET INVOLVED. There are so many awesome people to network with, people in the program, IP&T alumni, professors, people across campus, professors' contacts. As you meet them and keep your ears open, you'll hear about some awesome opportunities. Don't worry too much if it's not what you want to end up doing forever, because ... well ... do we really know what we want to end up doing?
In what ways did your graduate program prepare you for your career?
Probably the biggest way that my program prepared me for my current responsibilities was in helping me learn the basics of instructional design. I knew nothing about determining learner competencies or developing expert performance models or working with SMEs before my grad program. Good grief! I'd never even heard of Storyline! So the program gave me some very basic skills that are essential in my current role. There are also a host of soft skills that I needed to learn—and am still learning—that are important to my current role, such as being able to get feedback even when I don't feel ready to share my incomplete project, or working with team members who may have very different design ideas than I do. Project management is also huge in my role. And again, I would say that the network established through the program is incredibly helpful.
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Learn more about the career paths and day-to-day responsibilities of people working in the corporate sector of the IDT field! Respondents are students and alumni of the BYU IP&T program.
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