Master of Science in Instructional Design

Program Contact: Ruth Schwartz 203-582-8419

The field of instructional design applies what we know about how people learn to the thoughtful design and implementation of instructional materials, such as websites, videos, podcasts, online courses, social media sites, interactive simulations and educational games. Our fully online program prepares students for professional work or advanced study in instructional design by providing opportunities to develop a solid grounding in core competencies of the field, including instructional design models, theories of learning, principles for the design of instructional media, specific technical skills for media production, and approaches to the selection, integration and evaluation of digital materials for learning.  Elective courses allow students to focus on their own particular interests and goals, such as teaching with technology in the K–12 classroom, designing digital media for museums or after-school programs, or producing instructional materials for higher education, corporate or nonprofit environments.

Courses in Theoretical Foundations of Education address learning theories; theoretical approaches to multimedia design; instructional design models; and elements of the instructional design process, including the needs assessment, generation of a design solution, and formative and summative evaluation of an instructional resource.

Courses in Design Fundamentals emphasize the application of theory to short-term design projects, fostering familiarity and essential competencies in a range of media (e.g., podcasts and videocasts; websites; social media; games and simulations; learning management systems; design for handheld devices and public spaces). The process of working in a team to plan and implement an instructional resource is also a focus.

Graduates of this program are prepared for career opportunities in settings such as higher education, schools or school districts, business environments, nonprofit groups, and educational software or media design firms.