Design,  Education

Another Look at ADDIE

In an effort to explore how learning theory and motivation can be applied to the instructional process, I am taking another look at ADDIE. What can ADDIE do to make instruction more engaging and practical for diverse learning audiences?

Defining ADDIE…
  1. ADDIE is a flexible instructional system design (ISD) framework used to used to develop courses. ADDIE is Analysis, Design, Development, Implementation, and Evaluation.
  2. ADDIE is used primarily by many training developers and instructional designers for technology-based instruction.
  3. One reason for ADDIE’s success is that student assessments are tied to learning objectives or learner outcomes.
  4. One criticism of ADDIE is that there is not a strong enough focus on the student and instructor relationship.
  5. ADDIE has been a standard for professionally developed, high-quality online education and heavily used in corporate e-learning and training.


Here are some of the questions you need to ask during the analysis phrase. Who needs the training? Determine timeline and schedule. Is there existing content? What is the delivery modality? What skills need to be learned? Plan Proof of Content (POC). Determine course objectives.


Translate course goals into learner and course outcomes. Use the SMART (Specific, Measurable, Attainable, Relevant and Timely.) format. Think ADDIE for the design phase for interactives, such as simulations, branching scenarios, and interactive lectures. Create storyboards and prototypes. Create lesson plans and identify learning activities and elements. Select media and identify assessments.


During the development phrase, outline course elements. Parse existing materials, if any. Prepare draft materials and activities. Revise, refine and produce materials and activities. Prepare and conduct usability testing.
Produce instructor training materials, if needed. Produce product guide, if needed.


The implementation phase is the actual delivery of the course, including training of learners, support staff, and instructors. During this phrase, ensure technical support is available and provide academic support, as needed.


Identify survey tool to obtain course feedback from participants and faculty. Identify possible tweaks to content and/or design. Develop 2.0 version of the course. How will course elements be improved?

An easy way to see if you are using the ADDIE model is to review one of your courses and try to identify the phases of ADDIE.

I am a learning experience design consultant focused on developing engaging learning experiences. Although my career has always been related to education in some way, I have worked as a technology director, curriculum specialist, college professor, and now an online instructional designer.