Empathic Instructional Design

Design Thinking is a powerful and proven method that has emerged from Human Centred Design (HCD), which is about solving and shaping learning experiences where the human learner is the customer. Teaching design thinking can be an excellent way to teach students empathy, because it teaches them how to solve another person’s problems by offering creative and innovative solutions that are related to their needs. This includes empathy with students and parents and can also be taught in the context of a classroom environment, such as in front of other students or in a group of peers. However, raising children in an environment where adults have empathy can put them at a disadvantage, which means that they need a little help to consciously develop empathy as adults. [Sources: 5, 8, 9, 15]


Therefore, a high level of empathy is required to conceive for these situations. Empathy also requires knowledge of the learner’s motivations and needs, which may not be obvious. EdTech and UX designers need to look after learners by understanding their needs and limitations and reconciling their lack of choice with the needs of their colleagues and other people in the learning environment. This means understanding not only their motivations, but also their expectations and expectations of others. [Sources: 11, 14]


Another way to improve empathy in a company is to have a teacher or mentor who leads by example and publicly acknowledges the efforts of learners to show empathy. Developing empathy training can meet training needs and lead to better outcomes for all involved, not just the L & D team that creates the training. [Sources: 1, 11]


The Kouprie Visser framework has helped IDs develop their design practice, and applying the Design Thinking Cycle to the Instructional Design process will help you design and develop powerful, person-centric solutions. Design Thinking can provide designers with a structured framework within which to understand and pursue innovative ways that can contribute to the effectiveness of learning solutions and create real added value for learners. With these findings and the use of training, curriculum planners can create eLearning for all. [Sources: 8, 11, 13]


The first step is to get a better understanding of the problem you are trying to solve and the learning gaps that need to be filled. They will also understand the empowering idea that empathy can be mastered by anyone and that solutions really are based on the human being. To empathize with the learners means to connect, to understand what they need, to create better learning experiences for them and to shape them for their needs. Connect with them, understand what you need them for and design them for your needs, creating better learning experiences for all learners. [Sources: 0, 4, 10, 12]


Empathy is important because it allows you to truly understand and uncover the inner life of a person and his needs and desires. Empathy encourages designers to approach the life experiences of learners and encourages them to set aside their own assumptions about the world to gain insights into users and their needs. By engaging with, observing and empathizing with people to understand their experiences and motivations, you can gain an empathetic understanding of your problem. Ultimately, empathetic design increases the chances that ID services and products will meet users “needs, and encourages designers to” get close “to the life experiences of learners. [Sources: 2, 10, 13]


While empathy depends on the personality traits that are unique to each individual, salespeople can be trained and taught to have more empathy in dealing with customers. By engaging them in training situations where they can gradually develop empathy, they will be able to gain a better understanding of how to use empathy to make a sale. Feeling what someone else feels is an important part of a seller’s ability to understand a customer and his needs. [Sources: 3]


The link between creativity and empathetic design is mutually beneficial, both for learning and for brain development. Empathy is an important part of the human-centered design process for designers, which involves them in a deeper understanding of their users and their needs. The ability to reflect new ideas and insights to help users allows designers to combine empathy and creativity in the design process. [Sources: 7, 12, 13]


If the design thinking method is applied in the context of learning solutions development, we can see how crucial the educational design process is when it comes to supporting measurable behavioural changes. Using the example of Sam Harris, professor of psychology at the University of California, San Diego, he created a framework of experience that helps learners acquire skills, acquire knowledge, and change their behavior. Design Thinking, which teaches empathy, can be applied to many problems outside the classroom and can help encourage students to find a solution – based thinking – a process that focuses on positivity, feedback, iteration, and empathy. Curriculum planners are responsible for creating a learning experience based on the unique needs of a particular audience or topic. [Sources: 2, 6, 8, 15]




[0]: https://www.td.org/insights/using-learner-personas-for-empathy-driven-training


[1]: https://www.novoed.com/resources/blog/develop-empathy-social-learning/


[2]: https://www.northeastern.edu/graduate/blog/instructional-design-models/


[3]: https://www.trainingfolks.com/blog/how-to-incorporate-empathy-in-sales


[4]: https://www.reflectionsoftware.com/blog/using-learner-personas-for-empathy-driven-training


[5]: https://community.articulate.com/articles/empathy-what-it-is-why-it-s-important-and-how-to-build-it


[6]: http://pubs.royle.com/article/The+Emotional+Future+Of+Instructional+Design/3036879/482831/article.html


[7]: https://www.innovationtraining.org/the-instructional-power-of-creativity-design-and-empathy-in-high-school-curriculum/


[8]: https://www.ttro.com/blog/instructional-design/how-design-thinking-can-enhance-your-learning-experience-development/


[9]: https://www.eschoolnews.com/2020/11/24/teaching-with-empathy/2/


[10]: https://www.interaction-design.org/literature/article/design-thinking-getting-started-with-empathy


[11]: https://learningsolutionsmag.com/articles/design-thinking-approach-to-elearning-emphasizes-empathy


[12]: https://elearninginfographics.com/instructional-design-thinking-infographic-5-steps/


[13]: https://edtechbooks.org/jaid_9_3/building_empathy


[14]: https://www.learnovatecentre.org/empathy-in-designing-for-education/


[15]: https://www.edutopia.org/blog/teaching-empathy-through-design-thinking-rusul-alrubail