The Context

To improve my personal knowledge and skills for designing and developing self-guided learning, I utilized “successive approximation” as described in Michael Allen’s Guide to e-Learning. This interactive process includes ADDIE and ISD concepts, but is a repetitive cycle used to design, develop, and evaluate a rapid prototype.  I continually adapted the e-Learning prototype to accommodate user feedback and meet the needs of the audience.

The artifact is an e-Learning prototype about the Passover Seder Plate. The audience, Jewish 5-10 year-olds, will be able to identify, define, and pronounce all six items on a Passover Seder Plate.

Demonstrating the Competency

I used successive approximation to develop a rapid prototype that took into account motivation and interactivity of the learner. I had to modify the prototype based on various factors, such as audience age and previous knowledge, as well as how to keep learners interacting and engaged with the e-Learning. After conducting several usability tests with learners, I found that the design needed to be changed to incorporate various factors that I had not initially considered. For example, the matching game was considered too easy for 60% of those who tested the prototype, so I added an “advance” options the learner can chose to play. Also, after tooling around with various models, discover learning was chosen so the audience can navigate this non-linear e-Learning at their own pace, make connections to prior knowledge, and can interact with the e-Learning environment by exploring and manipulating objects.

The Unexpected

Successive approximation emphasized a “quick and dirty” prototype presentation, “developed with just enough functionality, content, and media development for everyone to understand” (Allen, 203, p. 119). Having the justification to create a prototype that does not need to meet production standards empowered me think more abstractly and harness alternative design functionalities and build in the different systems which may have traditionally held me back during production.

Personal Outcomes

My successful completion implementing successive approximation to deliver this e-Learning demonstrates my capabilities to approach a problem systematically and modify the product based on obstacles and consequences encountered during the development process. By looking at the big picture, I was able to constantly change my design to:

  • Create a functional prototype that clearly demonstrates e-Learning activity so the client can evaluate the proposed approaches.
  • Identify motivation factors to raise and keep learners going through self-guided instruction.
  • Choose appropriate models of interactivity that connect the content and learner.


Allen, M. (2003). Michael Allen’s guide to e-learning: Building interactive, fun, and effective learning programs for any company. Hoboken, NJ: John Wiley & Sons, Inc.

e-Portfolio Presentation

A video depiction of my live e-portfolio presentation to the EDTEC faculty on April 15, 2010 (12:20)

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