Thinking Outside ISD: A Management Model for Instructional Design

Date of Award


Degree Type


Degree Name

Doctor of Philosophy (PhD)


Coastal Sciences, Gulf Coast Research Laboratory

First Advisor

Sharon H. Walker

Advisor Department

Coastal Sciences, Gulf Coast Research Laboratory


The purpose of this study was to examine the effectiveness of an instructional system management-level model proposed by the author designed to orchestrate the efficient development and implementation of customer requested curriculum. The three phases of systems-based model are designed to ensure delivery of high quality and timely instruction are: (1) the assessment and documentation of organizational training requirements; (2) project management control of curriculum development; and (3) the implementation of relevant instruction by competent instructors. This model also provides (4) measurable and quantifiable course evaluation results to justify return on investment and validate its importance with respect to the customer's organizational strategic objectives. The theoretical approach for this study was systems theory-based due to the nature of the instructional systems design model and the systematic design of the management model. The study was accomplished using single-case study application of qualitative style of inquiry as described by Patton (2002). Qualitative inquiry was selected to collect and analyze participant holistic perspective assessment of effectiveness, relevance, and timeliness of the instructional design management model. Participants for this study included five managers, five subject matter experts, and six students assigned to a military organization responsible for the collection of hydrographic data for the U.S. Navy. Triangulation of data sources within the qualitative framework of the study incorporated the three participant groups--managers, SMEs, and students--incorporated multiple views of the course development and implementation to validate the findings and the remove researcher bias. Qualitative coding was accomplished by importing transcribed interviews into Microsoft Excel and sorted using Auto-Filter. The coded interviews indicated effective functionality in the views of the model from each of the three participant groups. Results from a pre-test/post-test comparative analysis indicated a significant difference between the pre-test and post-test mean at the p < .001 for the six students. Although the subject of the case study was within a military training environment, the application of the proposed instructional systems managerial model can be applied to the design, development, delivery, and assessment of instructional material in any line of study where quantifiable effective learning is the goal.