You are here:

Visualizing Design: Using Visuals to Create Quality, Learner-Focused Online Learning Environments

, Kent State University, United States

EdMedia + Innovate Learning, in Vancouver, BC, Canada ISBN 978-1-939797-24-7 Publisher: Association for the Advancement of Computing in Education (AACE), Waynesville, NC


Instructional designers have a variety of instructional design models, methods, and theories to use as a foundation for designing instruction. The course’s goals and outcomes drive the design and development of the course. Instructional designers need to select theories and methods that align with course outcomes and goals rather than designing a course around a particular theory. Online learning teams can use backwards design to design quality, aligned, learner-focused online learning environments. Collaboration of course developers and instructional designers aids in ensuring alignment. This collaboration involves brainstorming and exploring ideas for establishing the pedagogical framework for the course. However, in many cases, discussion between the instructional designer and course developer is not enough to help course developers successfully visualize how to align their pedagogical framework. Therefore, interactive whiteboards can be utilized to visual the design process.


Grincewicz, A. (2016). Visualizing Design: Using Visuals to Create Quality, Learner-Focused Online Learning Environments. In Proceedings of EdMedia 2016--World Conference on Educational Media and Technology (pp. 692-698). Vancouver, BC, Canada: Association for the Advancement of Computing in Education (AACE). Retrieved February 16, 2019 from .

View References & Citations Map


  1. Akoumianakis, D. (2011). Learning as 'knowing': Towards retaining and visualizing use in virtual settings. Journal of Educational Technology & Society, 14(3), 55-68. Retrieved from Arnheim, R. (1980). A plea for visual thinking. Critical Inquiry, 6(3), 489-497.
  2. Baddeley, A. (1998). Recent developments in working memory. Current Opinion in Neurobiology, 8(2), 234-238. Doi:10.1016/S0959-4388(98)80145-1
  3. Bateman, B.D. & Herr, C.M. (2003). Writing measurable IEP goals and objectives. Attainment Co., Inc., Verona, WI.
  4. Bober, M.J., Sullivan, H.J., Lowther, D.L., & Harrison, P. (1998). Instructional practices of teachers enrolled in educational technology and general educational programs. Educational Technology, Research, and Development, 46(3), 81-97.
  5. Caplan, D. (2004). The development of online courses. In T. Anderson & F. Elloumi (Eds.), Theory and practice of online learning. Athabasca, AB, Canada: Athabasca University. Center for the Study of Higher Education. (2011). On-line assessment. Retrieved from Christensen, T.K., & Osguthorpe, R.T. (2004). How do instructional-design practitioners make instructionalstrategy decisions? Performance Improvement Quarterly, 17(3), 45-65.
  6. Grincewicz, A.M. (2012). A model for developing quality graduate programs using blended courses in Nursing Education. In Proceedings of E-Learn 2012. Montreal, Canada: AACE.
  7. Hixon, E. (2008). Team-based online course development: A case study of collaboration models. Online Journal of Distance Learning Administration, 11(4). Retrieved from
  8. Koehler, M.J., Mishra, P., & Yahya, K. (2007). Tracing the development of teacher knowledge in a design seminar: Integrating content, pedagogy and technology. Computers & Education, 49(3), 740-762. Doi:10.1016/J.compedu.2005.11.012
  9. Krathwohl, D.R. (2002). A revision of Bloom’s taxonomy: An overview. Theory into Practice, 41(4), 212-218.
  10. Mayer, R.E. (2001). Multimedia learning. Cambridge, UK: Cambridge University Press.
  11. Palloff, R.M. & Pratt, K. (2011). The excellent online instructor. San Francisco, CA: Jossey-Bass.
  12. Paivio, A. (1991). Images in mind: The evolution of a theory. London: Harvester Wheatsheaf. Puzziferro, M. & Shelton, K.A model for developing high-quality online course: Integrating a systems approach with learning theory. Journal of Asynchronous Learning Networks, 12 (3-4), 119-136. Retrieved from Quality Matters Program. (2011). Quality Matters Rubric Workbook for Higher Education. MarylandOnline, Inc.
  13. Rooksby, J., & Ikeya, N. (2012). Collaboration in formative design: Working together at a whiteboard. IEEE Software, 29(1), 56-60.
  14. Shibley, I., Amaral, K.E., Shank, J.D., & Shibley, L.R. (2011). Designing a blended course: Using ADDIE to guide instructional design. Journal of College Science Teaching, 40(6), 80-85. Retrieved from Wiggins, G. & McTighe, J. (2011). The Understanding by Design Guide to Creating High-Quality Units, Association for Supervision and Curriculum Development, Alexandria, VA.
  15. Wiggins, G. & McTighe, J. (2005). Understanding by Design Professional Development Workbook, Association for Supervision and Curriculum Development, Alexandria, VA.

These references have been extracted automatically and may have some errors. If you see a mistake in the references above, please contact