Instructional Design Models

a close-up of a building

If you have interacted with anyone on the Academic Technology Services team, you have probably heard us use the words "Bloom's Taxonomy" when referring to writing learning objectives or outcomes.  But what does that mean exactly?  What models or methods do instructional designers use when designing certificates, courses, or instruction? 

These four models will give you a brief overview of some of the instructional models you can use to build your courses.  If you want to know more about these models or one not listed here, please contact one of the instructional designers.

Merrill's First Principles of Instruction

David Merrill's First Principles of Instruction are a set of interrelated principles that can be applied to instruction in order to increase student learning gains.


ADDIE stands for Analysis, Design, Development, Implementation and Evaluation which are the five phases of this linear instructional systems design model. The idea is to complete each phase before progressing to the next.

Gagne's Nine Events of Instruction

In 1965, Robert Gagne published his Nine Events of Instruction that identified the mental conditions needed for learning based on an information processing model.

Bloom's Taxonomy

Benjamin Bloom published his Taxonomy of Educational Objectives in 1956 which classified different objectives for students into three domains: cognitive, affective, and psychomotor.