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Instructional Systems Design - ISD
05/03/09
Front-End Analysis to Identify Instructional Goals
Topic: 2- Front-End Analysis

Front-end analysis consists of:

  1. Performance Analysis
  2. Needs Assessment / Analysis
  3. Job Analysis

According to instructional designers, the best approach for identifying instructional goals is performance technology in which instructional goals are set in response to problems or opportunities within an organization. (p.16)

Designers engage in perfrormance analysis and needs assessment processes in order to:

  • Identify problems
  • Find causes of problems
  • List possible solutions
    • Identify instructional goals
    • Identify changes needed (seldom is instruction the single answer to a problem)

1. Performance analysis (p.18)

According to Dick & Wager (1995), performance analysis is the use of analytical tools for

  • identifying organizational performance problems
  • developing the most appropriate solutions

Purpose of performance analysis study (p. 20)

The purpose of performance analysis study is to

  • acquire information in order to
  • verify problems and
  • find solutions

Outcome of a performance analysis study

  • Clear description of problems
    • failure to achieve desired results      vs.
    • desired and actual employee performance
  • Evidence of problem causes
  • Suggested cost-effective solutions

2. Needs assessment: Ways to conduct one (p.23) (Example)

  • surveys (past and present)
  • insightful interviews (individual or group interviews)
  • direct observations
  • questionnaires
  • other data collection techniques

Components of needs assessment

  • desired status
  • actual status
  • gap > need

Results of effective needs assessment

  • description of need
  • evidence of its validity
  • possible solutions

3. Job analysis (p.23)

  • The people who work in the job + the environment surrounding the job provide the characteristics of the job.
  • Task inventory: the tasks that comprise the job > duties
  • Screen task inventory by
    • asking SMEs (Subject Matter Experts)
    • job incumbents
      if tasks are really part of the job
  • Revise
  • Format tasks as survey, response scales, directions
  • Pilot test the survey
  • Final revision
  • Distribute survey to a sample of job incumbents
  • Summarize responses on a task-by-task basis
  • Choose high priority tasks for further review
  • THEN, conduct a TASK ANALYSIS
    1. break down tasks for review into component elements
    2. explain in detail the relationships among elements
    3. describe tools + conditions involved in performing each element
    4. write standards for successful performance

[What does critical thinking entail? (p.18) 

  1. be open-minded
  2. be objective
  3. seek root causes
  4. view problem from multiple perspectives
  5. give a fair hearing to evidence on multiple perspectives
  6. suspend judgment until all pertinent information has been heard
  7. listen to contrary views
  8. change a conclusion in the face of compelling information]

Relevant Links:

What is Performance Analysis?

NEEDS ASSESSMENT- the first step

THE NEEDS ASSESSMENT- TOOLS FOR LONG-TERM PLANNING

Needs Assessment Training

Needs Assessment Strategies for Community Groups and Organizations

Needs Assessment Tutorial

Job Analysis: Overview

Job Analysis

Job Analysis Tools (and sample worksheets)

Personnel Manager: Job Analysis

How to Write a Job Analysis and Description


Posted by Nada at 12:01 AM EDT
Updated: 05/04/09 11:50 PM EDT

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