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User Design offers a fresh perspective on how front-line learners (users) can participate in the design of learning environments. The author challenges the universal assumption that front-line users must be relegated to the role of offering input, and that the actual design activity of learning systems must still be conducted only by experts. The book presents a new set of methods and strategies that show how the tools of professional designers can be effectively shared with broad groups of users and other participants in the process of creating their own learning.
Drawing on ideas from human computer interface design, stakeholder participation, critical theory, systems theory, change processes, learning theory, and basic design theories, this innovative work is organized around the major issues associated with user-design. Areas covered include:

  • differences between user-design, stakeholder involvement, and user-centered design;
  • historical perspectives and empirical research;
  • user-design tools and ways of facilitating user-design;
  • gaining leadership support in an organization; and
  • conflicts that arise during user-design engagement.

Accessible to all audiences, User Design can serve as a strong companion volume to traditional instructional design texts, yet is comprehensive enough to be a stand-alone text in design courses. It will appeal to instructional designers, curriculum developers, training managers/designers, community organizers, adult educators, as well as anyone interested in the dynamics of power and emancipation in learning.

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