Senior Instructional Designer, Prototyping

Western Governors University
January 2, 2021
Atlanta, GA
Job Type


Current WGU employees must have their applications in by 11/24/2020 to be considered.

Position Summary  

In conjunction with other stakeholders, the senior instructional designer manages the course development process and evaluates curricular materials (e.g., courses, technologies, modules) based on quality rubrics, providing expertise on the instructional effectiveness of learning resources. This individual works closely with stakeholders, researching and incorporating proven learning strategies and quality practices into the curriculum of each degree program. In addition, the senior instructional designer collaborates with stakeholders to develop course competencies and objectives. This position is responsible for the success of several simultaneous projects, assessing risk, reporting progress, and communicating effectively with internal and external stakeholders to promote collaboration and accountability. 

Essential Functions and Responsibilities

  • Manage the course development process for new, redeveloped, and enhanced courses
  • Ensure academic and quality standards as well as WGU’s vision and mission are reflected in all aspects of the student experience
  • Ensure course learning material, student engagement strategies, formative assessments, practice activities, and feedback such as knowledge checks result in student attainment of skills, proficiencies and competencies
  • Seek and implement alternative and innovative student engagement and learning modalities
  • Application of learner-centered design to design and development of contextually rich, engaging, and objective-driven courses that focus on applicable real-world/workplace skills
  • Design and create high-impact learning experiences for online, CBE, and individually-paced learning
  • Creation of learning through all stages of production from ideation, to scripting and storyboarding, to production
  • Identify learning resources, manage and assist in the design and development of curricular materials, and map learning resources to course or program objectives and competencies in collaboration with university partners
  • Develop and revise curricular materials, including competency statements, learning objectives, and other relevant documentation
  • Review learning resources and assessments to ensure proper alignment to the intended objectives and facilitate agreement for necessary changes
  • Collaborate with assessment portfolio specialist in designing and implementing the assessment traverse design and collaborate with assessment developers on the creation of formative experiences/assessments
  • Collaborate with the program owner and assessment developer to ensure alignment of curriculum and assessments
  • Ensure course development is completed on time and within budget and meets standards of quality
  • Conduct quality assurance reviews on courses and implement revisions

Knowledge, Skills and Abilities

  • Thorough understanding of curriculum development, instructional design, and assessment for learning (formative assessment)
  • Experience with implementing Universal Design for Learning (UDL)
  • Demonstrated ability to design and create high impact pedagogy for online, CBE, individually-paced learning
  • Shepherding ideas from ideation to production, and contributing to the creation process. 
  • Demonstrated ability to learn new technologies, solve emergent problems, and share learnings and suggestions with a team to come to a quick, value-driven solutions
  • Thorough understanding of project management, needs assessment, and risk management
  • Advanced technical writing and editing skills
  • Ability to manage multiple projects at different stages while meeting deadlines and quality standards
  • Ability to work independently, under minimal supervision
  • Advanced critical thinking, analysis, and synthesis skills
  • Advanced skills in planning, organizing, and self-management
  • Ability to facilitate collaboration, support, and approval from a variety of stakeholders


  • Problem Solving Skills: Investigates appropriate resources and involves partners when appropriate; future-oriented; assesses what will help/hinder achieving goals; focuses on what is important.
  • Interpersonal Skills: Deals with others in a considerate, respectful, and unbiased manner; approaches conflict proactively; solicits and shares feedback openly; listens with empathy and maintains composure.
  • Accuracy: Draws on factual information garnered from careful cultivation of a broad knowledge of WGU’s goals and processes; investigates beyond assumptions.
  • Adaptability: Course corrects behaviors and communication style to meet the needs of a wide range of situations; tackles obstacles appropriately; is comfortable with ambiguity.
  • Reliability: Accountable to others; does what it takes to get the job done; actions are consistent with words; follows through on commitments; exhibits exceptional integrity.
  • Attitude: Displays commitment to the organization and to personal growth; self-motivated and able to motivate and inspire others; asserts self appropriately to champion ideas; tells the truth in a direct and constructive manner.
  • Initiative: Self-directs with a strong bias for action; leads the way in improvement of performance or processes; displays keen interest in students and organization.


Minimum Qualifications:

  • Master's degree in instructional design, educational technology, comparable degree or Bachelor’s degree with related areas of relevant work experience in instructional design, learning sciences, and educational technology  
  • Three or more years of online university course design experience or curriculum development
  • Experience in online learning technologies and pedagogies
  • Experience with graphic design and multimedia content creation
  • Experience with adaptive technologies (VR, mobile, etc)

Preferred Qualifications:

  • Teaching experience
  • Experience selecting, adapting, and using OER to support learning outcomes
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