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Tuesday, July 10, 2012

Instructional Design Disassociation and Development of Self (Course Assignment 1.2)

Instructional Design

Disassociation and Development of Self

Ann M. Garvey

Jones International University


This paper reflects work done through a Jones international University course on designing interactive e-learning as taught by Dr. Julie Wegner, July and August of 2012. Elements of the paper include a definition of instructional design incorporating among other theorists, work from the ADDIE model. The focus of the plan included in this instructional design work is based on one sentence, from one chapter, from the book, “Dissociation and the Dissociative Disorders: DSM – V and beyond. The sentence is planned to engage learners of what is and who are people with dissociative diagnoses. Elements of a group personally taught called the Thinking Group for adults with developmental disabilities (DD) was used to comprehend better instructional design.  Processes were then informed through a long distance learning program found in the appendix.  The project is summarized in the discussion noting the enthusiasm to go forward with the project.

Instructional Design
Disassociation and Development of Self

Definition of Instructional Design

This learner developed a working definition of instructional design during the first assignment for the course work on designing interactive e-learning from Jones international University (JIU). We stated that instructional design manages the analysis, design, development, implementation, and evaluation of a systematic process which utilizes affective learning resources, materials, and tools, so that instructional information can be implemented and applied by the learner disciplined to learn through meaningful goals, task and/or activities. We also noted that the contributing theorists to our theory were the Association for Educational Communications and Technology (AECT), 1994; Berger & Kam, 1996; Broderick, 2001; Craig, 2012; Gagne, Wagner, Golas, & Keller, 2005; Intulogy, 2010; Reiser & Dempsey, 2012; and Siemons, 2002. 

Description of our Learning Environment

With the above definition in mind, this learner proposes the following description of our learning environment that will be developed as our course project.  It is resourced from the book, “Dissociation and the Dissociative Disorders: DSM-V and Beyond” written by Paul Dell and John O'Neil (2009). The instructional design outline for the actual chapter “Disassociation and Development of Self” is written by Elizabeth Carlson, Tuppet Yates, and L. Allen Sroufe and it contains eight areas in the same approximate number of our corresponding sessions.  The eight areas are:

(1)   Dissociation: description and diagnosis, (2) etiology of disassociation, (3) disassociation within the framework of developmental psychopathology, (4) normative self-processes, (5) normative dissociative processes, (6) developmental pathways of disassociation, (7) disassociation and self-functioning, and (8) conclusions and diagnostic implications.

When it is time to develop an individual lesson plan for the project, we will utilize only one sentence from the first area on dissociation description and diagnosis.  It is a very long conceptualized sentence, so it will be appropriate and worthy of its own unit. The sentence establishes a scaffold from which the learner will study to conceptualize what the terms mean and understand better real people who just happen to be multiples.  The sentence reads:

Across the developmental spectrum, dissociative processes may manifest as disturbances of affect regulation (e.g., depression, mood swings, feelings of isolation),

identity disruptions (e.g., splitting, fragmentation),

auto-hypnotic phenomena (e.g., trances, time distortions, psychogenic numbing)

memory dysfunction (e.g., psychogenic amnesia, fugue),

revivification of traumatic experience (e.g. flashbacks, hallucinations), and

behavioral disturbance (e.g., inattention, poor impulse control, self-harm)

(Hornstein and Putnam, 1992 as cited in Dell & O’Neil, 2009).

The learning environment that the learners (generally adults) will utilize is an online site for multiples, called, “Dissociation Blog Showcase” (Olson, 2012).  It is curated by Sarah E Olson, the author of a book on multiplicity called, “Becoming One” (Olson, 1997).  It is her story of triumph over multiple personality disorder. The showcase is a compendium of approximately 140 blogs of people who are multiple (dissociative identity disorder (DID)). Because of our interest in social networking, or social media, we would also like to have facets of our design plan that include Facebook and Twitter.  It is important in our planning that people following the plan be able to interact with multiples on a one-to-one basis up to and including leaving comments that may be responded to. 

The project will be designed and introduced through the attributes of a WebQuest.  Both multiples and learners should have the opportunity to impact on one another. There will also be feedback loops that are evaluative in that a set of directions will encourage the learner to also become a blogger and write about her experience as she is learning about it. She will have the option to keep her blog private from the general public, although there needs to be an inlet so that people within the course and the instructor can view the learner’s work. Respectfully, there will be a reflection element where learners can add what they have learned from looking at not only the multiples’ blogs, but also their peers. It will be an excellent asset to evaluate and redevelop/interpret the instructional design plan.

Characteristics of Instructional Design

Baturay (2008) states that, “Basically the routine of the [systematic] instructional design includes and follows the stages of analysis, design, development, implementation and evaluation. Although, this is the common characteristic found in almost all instructional design models, there are some minor differences in them.”  Another element of the instructional design is that it includes “the integration of real-world contexts in learning environments” (Hansen, 2010).  As an example of one of my learning experiences, I would refer to a group I facilitated for twelve years with adults with developmental disabilities (DD) called, “The Thinking Group.” 

The group met once weekly, for an hour, and it included approximately 40 adult individuals with DD.  This learner had an educational background of psychology, but we did not understand at that time the development of instructional design.  There was a very large effort to integrate the learning experience and apply it to the lives of the group members so they could understand and comprehend better information from their life and with the lives of their peers while in a social setting: learning could be both fun and friendly.  It turned out to be a favorite activity, and even though the group for the majority of years, met one hour before they were dismissed on Fridays, the group maintained focus and concentration on the tasks and learning experiences developed for them.

The five characteristics mentioned previously as analysis, design, development, implementation and evaluation, were only partially satisfied in the Thinking Group’s actual instructional design plan. For the most part, it was only during the latter years that a truer plan was implemented. Initially, the analysis portion stemmed from events that had affected the facilitator and learners during the week in front of the session. There was one - 1 1/2 year process where the sessions were given a higher-order analysis that was penciled in according to a grid of expectations noted in the accreditation process. Such as there might be on the column side six to eight areas, such as the area, “social,” and on the row side, there might be six to eight areas such as the objective, “independence.” For each week there was movement toward one random grid square to another so that for the grid coordinates combining social and independence, we might establish directions for role-playing “riding the bus to their community jog independently.”  The usage of design was in the creation of the grid and then developing a system so that individuals could think of concepts that might be partly known, but also partly new. The implementation was outlined and props gathered, and then spontaneously delivered.

The most problematic characteristic was the evaluation of the plan. Due to the amount of energy expended trying to engage this many individuals at the end of a tiring Friday, there was very little time to summarize the experience as to what worked and what did not work and reflect on how the plan was received. It does seem that the missing evaluative component was detrimental to a cohesive program, in that the instructor could be very creative and develop plans at the spur of the moment, but for only 1 ½ years did the program fit closely together in a interconnected manner. There was some work done in that for the majority of this 12 year period of time with the group, the facilitator did keep a blog, that although personal, did descriptively capture some of the better sessions so that although not useful to the center (which has since closed), have at least not been lost to time.

Processes of Instructional Design

During the course of researching, we found a resource with a systematic literature review that listed and described the main indicators of the “quality distance learning program” (Chaney, Chaney, and Eddy, 2010) (see appendix as well).  The indicators included:

Student-teacher interaction, prompt feedback, student support services, program evaluation and assessment, clear analysis of audience documented, technology plan to ensure quality, institutional support, institutional resources, course structure guidelines, active learning techniques, respect for diverse ways of learning, faculty support services, strong rationale for distance learning that correlates to the mission of the institution, appropriate tools and media, reliability of technology, implementation of guidelines for course development, and review of instructional materials.

The main indicators corresponded to processes of instructional design. As well, it was exceptionally fortunate that the resource discussed the processes listed in distance learning programs. Although the instructional design plan that we are designing is not necessarily for learners in an institutional venue, it does have many characteristics that are likewise associated with adult learners. It contains items that can be checked-off in the design processes to assure that each element is covered in the plan. It is especially useful in that it establishes us as an institution-like entity responsible for relaying educational information suitable on a more professional level that could also be utilized then by learners in academic settings as well as autonomously.  This is a good representation of multiplicity and of people who are living the experience which should challenge new knowledge formation for the learners. As a systems concept, the process is complete and effective towards the goals we have in mind.

Compare and Contrast Traditional Instructional Design Models with Whole Task Approaches to Instructional Design.

The new instructional design model, designed by this learner, includes parts of the original ADDIE model where each of the components were broken down into parts so that the learner could only deal with one part of the problem at a time, and after she had studied and completed that goal, task, or activity, the learner would try to associate all smaller lessons she had encompassed into a context which was close, but not exact to the task that she had been working through. The new whole task approach to instructional design meant that the learner would work on completing tasks within the environment.  In the example of dissociation and development of self, the lesson plans will orientate the learner within the environment of multiples through the blogs, Twitter, and Facebook and also by completing the assignment of finding examples of disturbances manifested in dissociation. Hopefully, the learner will relate to the multiples’ experiences they are reading about, and will still think of them as normal human beings, though with challenges with the result that the learner is then educated by a larger-sense of a differently-informed community.


I am very happy with the development of the project plan thus far. Although this learner’s papers tend to be long, the amount of detail and interest that ensues is very gratifying to the learner, in that she can visualize the experience and the project in its entirety and find that it encompasses important intellectual and creative mental endeavors that keep her involved and engaged. Normally, we would place the reflection portion of this assignment in the forum, under its proper place, but because this paper is being turned in later than earlier, we wanted to assure that thoughts were included before we formulated the discussion portion of our paper. The following week, we will try to develop this portion of the assignment prior to the closing of that weeks’ work. In trying to understand this assignment, we skipped ahead to the second week assignment of reading chapter 6 on “the learning sciences: where they came from and what it means for instructional designers (Reiser, and Dempsey, 2009). We are more than enthusiastic about reading the corresponding chapters for week two.  They felt inspiring in that as we turned pages and highlighted, elements of the project developed spontaneously.  It was very encouraging and hinted that we were on the correct path.


There were six components to this paper that should portray the beginning of an instructional design plan. The definition of instructional design allowed for both older portions of the ADDIE model while incorporating into that plan elements of others’ models that advanced the original. The older model had analysis, design, development, implementation, and evaluation, but the newer model encouraged more from the learner. She needed to be disciplined enough to use resources, materials, and tools and the learner in the newer model needed to be disciplined enough to establish for herself goals, tasks, and/or activities.

The description of our learning environment added the text that we would be using and in particular the chapter that would be highlighted in our course. The sentence for our individual example of a session pertaining to dissociative processes is an extremely complicated sentence. Most individuals can develop for themselves some thoughts on what depression might be, but the chances of them being able to hold that in their mind close to the time they were thinking about fragmentation or fugue is relatively impossible. The hope is that when the learner, one step at a time, ferrets out those words and examples found from the dissociative definitions in the blogs, then that word and the people she meets through other and self-introspection will have a new sense of depth, so that the learner can feel and intuitively sense what somebody with that disturbance might be going through and only through that would the learner really learn to understand and validate this creative, but misunderstood disorder that does affect real people.

The characteristics of instructional design allowed us to go over the ADDIE model and then relate it to one of our teaching experiences with the Thinking Group. It would seem appropriate in today's terms that to learn teaching in a group processes that involve cognitive thinking abilities could be done by just experimenting with doing it, and feeling it, and then letting those components sifts through one's mind prior to one session after another.  In actuality, the overall feeling without having had the evaluation component left the emotion of being overwhelmed with the project as a whole. Without reframing learning and what the people absorbed and how they interacted utilizing their thinking processes, it might have been perfect for its own time and place, however, it is more likely that with newer experience in structural design, it might now be possible to incorporate better systematic strategic methods in new instructional design thinking that works better for all.

The processes of instructional design utilizing the distance learning program work of Cheney, Cheney, and Eddy (2010) was truly a great find (see appendix). The indicators included areas that might have taken much too long to develop without the “leg-up.” The processes included the people involved, how they would respond to each other, technology, structure and techniques, and new and far-reaching ways of learning with meaning as well as having resources, materials and tools. In comparing and contrasting instructional design models, we discovered that one did not have to get rid of the old plan (Addie) to use the new. We could take the best elements of many models and create something fresh. The project is developing through analysis and design, and we look forward to the implementation and evaluation of our project.


Baturay, M. H. (Winter, 2008).  Characteristics of basic instructional design models.  Ekev Academic Review 12(34).  p. 471-482.

Chaney, D., Chaney, E., & Eddy, (Winter, 2010).  The context of distance learning programs in higher educations: Five enabling assumptions. Online Journal of distance learning administration. 13(4).  P 1-8

Craig, D. V. (2012).  Theme 1:  Exploring instructional design [online course].  Retrieved from

Dell, P. F. & O’Neil, J. A. (2009).  Dissociation and the dissociative disorders:  DSM-V and beyond.  NY: Routledge.

Hansen, B. E. (January, 2010).  Characteristics of context for instructional design [ProQuest:  Dissertations and Theses].  Retrieved from

Intulogy. (2010). The ADDIE instructional design model:  A structured training methodology. Retrieved from

Olson, S. E. (1997).  Becoming one:  A story of triumph over multiple personality disorder.  Cheltenham, UK:  Trilogy Books

Olson, S. E. (2012).  Dissociation blog showcase:  Third of a lifetime.  Retrieved from

Reiser, R. A. & Dempsey, J. V. (2012).  Trends and issues in instructional design and technology (3rd ed.).  Boston, MA:  Pearson Education, Inc.


Chaney, Chaney, and Eddy, (2010)

The Context of Distance Learning Programs in Higher Education: Five Enabling Assumptions

Online Journal of Distance Learning Administration, Volume 13, Number Four, Winter 2010.

University of West Georgia, Distance Education Center

A systematic literature review on quality indicators of distance learning programs (Chaney, Eddy, Dorman, et al, 2009) yielded the following as the main indicators of quality distance learning programs:

  • Student-teacher interaction – there are several types of interaction in distance learning environments (i.e. student-teacher, student-student, and student-content); however, the interactions that proves to play a major role in quality assurance in distance learning programs are student-teacher interactions. Distance learning courses should be developed to promote and facilitate healthy interactions between the learner and the instructor.
  • Prompt feedback – it is quite important for instructors of distance learning courses to appear “present” among their students, during the entire course. This involves providing meaningful, helpful, and prompt feedback to questions, assignments, and/or student concerns. According to Sherry (2003), “communications from faculty that directly engages students and offers timely feedback may contribute to interchanges and the students’ subsequent success in the course” (p. 454). Instructors should define feedback time in the course syllabus/outline.
  • Student support services – support services, such as library services, admission services, financial aid, and advising services should be provided to students enrolled in distance learning, similarly to traditional, on-campus students. Meeting these needs are vital to the success of the distance learning program.
  • Program evaluation and assessment – it is crucial for measureable objectives and standards to be set, and evaluated, when developing and offering distance learning programs. Evaluation of instructional techniques, delivery, and educational processes should be rigorously assessed for improvement.
  • Clear analysis of audience – The needs of the audience, along with characteristics, geographic location, available technologies, and learner goals, should be identified. As well, the “goals and missions of the learning organization, the costs that must be recovered, the costs of delivery, the political environment at the time for the learning organization, the faculty compensation, and the market competition” (Shearer, 2003, p. 275).
  • Documented technology plan to ensure quality – The Institute for Higher Education Policy (2000) indicates that “a documented technology plan that includes electronic security measures (i.e. password protection, encryption, back-up systems [should be] in place and operational to ensure both quality standards and the integrity and validity of information” (p. 2).
  • Institutional support and institutional resources – the institutional culture, related to distance learning, will either drive or hinder the delivery of distance learning courses/programs. The developer should make themselves aware of core values of the institution, and incorporate these values into the development of distance learning courses/programs. In addition, “allocation of financial resources for distance learning activities and materials – such as fiscal resources for technology support, training and support services, faculty incentives, and compensation, instructional resources, and evaluation research and tools – is critical for high quality and successful distance education programs” (Chaney et al., 2009, p. 229).
  • Course structure guidelines – students should be informed of the self-motivation and commitment needed to be successful in the program. Course structure guidelines should also include information on course format, minimal technology needed, and course assignments, etc.
  • Active learning techniques – these are strategies that result in increasing enthusiasm of students to interact and learn the course content.
  • Respect diverse ways of learning – it is not only important to respect the diverse learning styles of students today, but to provide various educational delivery methods for students to engage in the learning process. This also involves assisting students to become more flexible in their approach to learning, as to incorporate a variety of learning settings (Dillon & Greene, 2003).
  • Faculty support services – faculty members should be provided with the appropriate support and tools to develop distance learning courseware, implement the course, and rigorously evaluate the course. Trainings for each aspect of course development and delivery should be offered to faculty.
  • Strong rationale for distance learning that correlates to the mission of the institution – in order to have a successful distance learning program, educators need “top-down” support, including a strong rationale for these programs that correlates to the mission of the learner institution.
  • Appropriate tools and media – as mentioned previously, the selection and use of appropriate tools, technology and media is crucial to the success of distance learning programs (see the discussion on use of appropriate technology).
  • Reliability of technology – a technology plan should be in place to ensure that the technology platform used is reliable for the delivery of the course/program. Provide students with contact information for whom to contact, should technological issues arise.
  • Implementation of guidelines for course development and review of instructional materials – According to the Institute for Higher Education Policy (2000), it is crucial that “guidelines regarding minimum standards [be] used for course development, design, and delivery, while learning outcomes – not the availability of existing technology – determine the technology used to deliver course content” (p. 2). Rigorous assessment of instructional materials improves the overall quality of instruction.

These quality indicators highlight the need for services that meet the needs of students in the context within which the program will occur. Faculty expertise, especially in terms of student-faculty feedback and program design features, are key quality indicators.

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