Career Pathway—Personal Reflection: Ina Whitehead
For almost 10 years, I worked as an editor at a private university in a school of nursing.
Throughout the years, the university began offering more online courses. Faculty members who
taught classes on campus were also being asked to use more technology in their classes. I noticed
some faculty members did not have a background that prepared them to adapt to these changes,
and there was a need for those who could design e-learning and provide technological assistance.
My goal is to work in a university assisting faculty by developing online courses. For my
personal reflection, I have focused on reviewing materials and resources related to e-learning.
Speaker Videos
Helping Teachers with Technology Integration: Dr. Anne Ottenbreit-Leftwich
This video by Dr. Ottenbreit-Leftwich. She is a graduate of Purdue’s Learning Design
and Technology Program and is currently a professor at Indiana University. Her presentation
focused on how she assists teachers in learning how to integrate technology into education by
working closely with teachers in a coaching role and encouraging them to gain field experience. I
knew before watching this video that I would like to perform in a similar role, and I found this
video to be very informative. The video helped me to understand more about what types of
barriers teachers face and how I can work with teachers to help them overcome these barriers.
From the Field: International Career in LDT: Dr. Dana Ruggiero
Dr. Dana Ruggiero is a graduate of Purdue’s LDT program who is now working in Bath,
England. In the video, she discusses how she went from graduating from Purdue’s PhD program
to become a tenured professor (Learning Technologist) at Bath University who travels
internationally. She began the video by showing pictures from some of her travels before
discussing the evaluation system in the UK. Dr. Ruggiero then discussed projects she has worked
on with international students as well as some of the cultural differences she has encountered.
Lastly, she discussed how she obtained a job at Bath University. I was accepted into Purdue’s
Bath University Internship Program this spring, and Dr. Ruggiero is my mentor. My internship
has just begun, and Dr. Ruggiero’s video helped me to understand the differences between
instructional design in the U.S. and U.K. and also helped to prepare me for my internship.
Maestro E-Learning: Jennifer Randall
Jennifer Randall is president of Maestro E-Learning, an instructional design company
based in Kalamazoo, Michigan. Mrs. Randall stated most of her employees have backgrounds in
academia. Maestro E-Learning has approximately 50 clients and 70% are in the medical field.
These clients need e-learning courses for their staff and consumers, but do not have knowledge
of how to design courses and do not understand adult learning. After the introduction, she
showed storyboards for one of Maestro’s clients, Dannon, and examples of e-learning courses
developed for other clients. Although I would like to work in higher education immediately after
graduation, I would also like to also work as a freelance consultant on a part-time basis because I
think it provides additional job security. Although Mrs. Randall’s company is only five years
old, she has already secured major clients, such as Dannon and Amway, which shows being a
successful business owner is possible within a short period of time.
Job Skills/Instructional Design Competencies
I have begun looking for a higher education position in instructional design. One of the
main resources that I use is Indeed.com. I also regularly check my Purdue e-mail for job postings
and was able to secure an interview. Jobs from the Society for Applied Learning Technology are
also sent by e-mail by a Purdue faculty member to everyone in the program. The ASTD (ATD)
Job Bank and HigherEd Jobs also advertise positions as well.
Purdue University lists eight competencies that it requires students to demonstrate before
graduating. I feel confident in my abilities to meet the first four competencies (synthesize
knowledge, create knowledge, communicate knowledge, and think critically and reflectively).
Due to time constraints, I have not had time to meet competency 5 (engage in professional
development). I have subscribed to several LinkedIn groups and attended a ISPI conference, but
I have not had time to become an active member of any organization. My goal is to join ASTD
(ATD) before the year ends, which will also help me to meet competency 6 (participate actively
in the profession). I feel some of my past assignments, particularly my evaluation class with Dr.
Ertmer, help me meet competency 7 (apply instructional design principles). Competency 8
(apply technology to solve instructional problems) is a competency that I hope to meet through
participation in my Purdue internship at Bath University.
Relevant Organizations
I have listed resources I have found that pertain to instructional design and technology
careers in higher education. Several of these organizations are listed below:
American Educational Research Association—This organization focuses on educational
Association for the Advancement of Computing in Education—This organization is
focused on the use of technology in education.
Association for Talent Development (Formerly the Association for Training and
Development)—This organization is probably the most well-known in instructional
design and offers a wide variety of excellent resources for those who develop instruction.
ASTD (ATD) publishes Training and Development, one of the premier journals for
instructional design.
E-Learning Guild—This organization is advertised as the oldest organization in existence
for distance learning professionals. The organization has almost 65,000 members and
produces courses, conferences, and Learning Solutions Magazine.
LinkedIn—This is a social network for professionals who wish to learn about jobs and
advance their careers. Members can join groups, which allow them to ask and respond to
questions from others. I have already joined LinkedIn, and I am currently a member of
several LinkedIn groups: Purdue Association of Learning Design and Technology, ASTD
(ATD), ISPI, Adobe Captivate, E-Learning Guild, and Instructional Designers.
Due to my previous work experience at a university, I was certain of my career direction.
My goal is to utilize the resources that I and my classmates have discovered and begin preparing
for my practicum experience. In addition, now that I am aware of Purdue’s competencies, I will
begin preparing for the portfolio review. I will also begin to more actively network by joining
professional organizations on the national and local levels.