Date of Award

Fall 2016

Document Type


Degree Name

Doctor of Philosophy (PhD)


STEM Education & Professional Studies

Committee Director

Jill Stefaniak

Committee Member

John Baaki

Committee Member

Darryl Draper


This study explored the interaction of multimedia production competencies of expert and novice instructional designers on the design decisions made during the instructional design process / workflow. This multiple measures study used qualitative survey instruments to access and measure the production competencies of participants, then a design aloud protocol to capture and measure the instructional design decision-making process for those same participants. A follow-on interview after the initial design aloud session was conducted in order to triangulate and confirm any trends or findings uncovered during the earlier design aloud session. Ultimately, the objective of this study was to provide some evidence that suggests whether certain production skills are influencing instructional design decision-making. Employer influence on the instructional designer’s decision-making was also explored.

Results indicated that a substantial number of instructional designers (n=30) who participated in this study were selecting media as a preliminary step in their workflow process, and were often then using analysis as a measure to confirm the early media selection. Expert instructional designers appeared to be less susceptible to the early media selection behavior, though not immune. Results indicate that one reason the expert instructional designers were less likely to adopt media as a preliminary instructional design step was that the experts conducted a more diverse set of analysis activities. Additionally, results indicated that instructional designers were often experiencing pressure to adopt media based on employer demands, and project constraints such as budget and time.