Instructional Designer - Mid-sized National Corporation

"My job is about creating a positive learning experience for people. My goal is to construct instructional design or instructional systems design to support efficient, effective, and appealing acquisition of skills and knowledge. In other words, my designs make learning more fun and more straightforward. The systems I design can be used at a formal learning institution (from kindergarten to post-graduate studies and continuing education) or within a government or industry context. The content I design might be used for face-to-face teaching, e-learning or a combination."

Salary Range:

$45,000 - $95,000

The Tip

Your school major will not differentiate you academically, but your minor can. Pick your minors with a clear intention of signalling interest and expertise.

Priority Knowledge & Skills
Management Skills
  • Manage the design process

  • Act in a responsible manner with regard to the needs of people, their communities and society as a whole

 

Research & Insights Skills
  • Formulate focused and practical research questions

  • Apply a deep knowledge of human behaviour to understand usability

 

Communication Skills
  • Translate content into meaningful information

  • Write clearly, including technical, descriptive and narrative language, to suit a wide variety of audiences

  • Conduct user testing

  • Use specialized software to prepare, edit and distribute content across multiple platforms

Design Skills
  • Build prototypes out of a variety of materials

  • Apply information architecture principles to various online and print mediums

 

Additional Job-Specific Skills
  • Lead and manage training for design projects using instructional design theories, practices and methods

  • Design, develop and maintain training curriculums

  • Design and develop instructor-led, e-learning and virtual learning for employees

 

Core Transferable Skills

Be an expert at all core transferable skills:

  • Thinking skills

  • Communication skills

  • Organizational skills

  • Interpersonal skills

  • Technical literacy

Building Block Experiences
Education & Learning:
  • Bachelor of Communication (information design) with a minor in marketing

  • Completed AMA Digital Marketing eLearning Certificate Module

  • VP of local chapter of Toastmasters

  • Became TED Fellow

 

My major in information design introduced me to the importance of innovation, problem-solving and process. I took a minor in marketing.

Employment Experiences:
  • In university I completed a work term at an e-learning company. This company offered me a position upon graduation.

  • I was on a structured development plan with my company and in five years worked with a great team

  • Following the development plan, I was promoted to team lead

 

My big break came in my work term. It showed me what I love to do and what I am good at. It also allowed me to demonstrate this to others. I didn’t always love the jobs I was assigned to do, but I realized that to become an e-learning expert, I was accountable to the whole business from a product’s design to distribution. Finally, my commitment to the organization built my personal brand equity—I have an excellent professional reputation.

 

Community Experiences:
  • On the board of my local UX organization

  • I chaired the fundraising committee of my child’s pre-school

 

Volunteering not only allows me to contribute my skills to my community, it broadens my network and relationships. The diversity of these relationships forces me out of my comfort zone.

Contextual Experiences:
  • Becoming a parent changed who I am as a manager

 

Balance requires discipline and perspective. I’ve become a better manager because I’ve internalized the principle of “don’t sweat the small stuff.”

Relationships:
  • My network is diverse—art directors, designers, copywriters, project managers

 

I built relationships with senior stakeholders early on. I found people naturally like to share their knowledge and impact others, so I made sure they knew the difference they made to me.