David Hopkins

What is a Learning Technologist (part 5)?

David HopkinsDepending on where you work you might use the title Learning Technologist, Education Technologist, Instructional Designer, or something else, but essentially these roles are the same.

  • See the ‘related posts’ section below for links to the previous 4 posts in this series.

Here are a few excerpts from job descriptions for these roles that I found with a quick Google search, see for yourself:

While reading this post last night - Learning Technology Trends To Watch In 2012 – I found the section on “Expanded Instructional Designer’s Role” quite interesting, not least as the expanded role sounded an awful lot like the work I am already engaged in?

“Captured in Clive Shepherd’s book, The New Learning Architect, the idea that an instructional designer has one only one function – course creation – seems outdated. Although many will continue to develop courses, instructional designers will need to think in broad terms about how to close learning gaps. This means understanding the strategies that underlie diverse possibilities for learning, both formal and informal, traditional and nontraditional, online and print and face-to-face and virtual.”

Many of the people I converse with on Twitter, LinkedIn, Google+, Facebook, at work, at conferences, etc, are also of this opinion: that it is more than just the final result that the LT (Learning Technologist) is interested in, that the LT can be a vital part of the whole process in getting the learning materials researched, set up, assessed, etc. Convincing others of this is not always easy.

“For example, instructional designers are managing communities of practice, curating content, facilitating online discussion groups, organizing events and supporting of social media for learning. Instructional designers are often the proponents of innovation and the persuaders who convince upper management that interaction and collaboration will make for a smarter organization. As more instructional designers and educators see themselves as learning architects, the world will become a smarter place.”

Wow, this is me, am I now a Learning Architect?

Do you have a view or comment on this, or any other aspect of the role or industry you work in? If so then please leave a comment and open the discussion.