Instructional Technology - My Definition and Name

IT what is it? As pointed out in our Textbook and the You Tube video, the definition of IT has changed throughout the last century, “because the field is constantly changing.” For me a definition should be flexible, it should include previous definitions and ideas that have evolved through the history of the field. And it should encompass what the field is currently today. For me the definition that works is the one used in the textbook.

The field of instructional design and technology (also known as instructional technology) encompasses the analysis of learning and performance problems, and the design, development, implementation, evaluation and management of instructional and non-instructional processes and resources intended to improve learning and performance in a variety of setting, particularly educational institutions and the workplace.
Professionals in the field of instructional design and technology often use systematic instructional design procedures and employ instructional media to accomplish their goals. Moreover, in recent years, they have paid increasing attention to non-instructional solutions to some performance problems. Research and theory related to each of the aforementioned areas is also an important part of the field. (Reiser p.5)

What I find attractive about this definition and the AECT 2008 definition is that each addresses previous definitions by including systematic processes AND instructional media in the definition. The textbook definition however also recognizes the human performance technology movement. I think it is important to recognize this is the only definition presented that addresses both the instructional and non-instructional solutions to problems presented.

As to the name of the field, I think that it is very important that the name be clear as to reflect what the field is. When I signed up for my MA in IT, I was one of those people who believed instructional technology was instructional media. I believed it was about computers, mobile devices, the internet, and all other forms of hardware and software. Therefore for me, design must be included in the name.

History of Instructional Technology – A Bedtime Story