The ADDIE Instructional Design Model

Introduction: The ADDIE model is a systematic instructional design model consisting of 5 phases: In the order of application – consideration the 5 phases are as follows:

(1) Analysis;

(2) Design;

(3) Development;

(4) Implementation;

(5) Evaluation.

The above represents the “standard” or “typical ADDIE model with a multitude of valid variants presently in existence and use. The architect of the ADDIE model remains unknown, however, perhaps the greatest refiners and proponents of the model are Dick and Carey who have published extensively on the model.

The ADDIE Model

The commonly accepted terms for the 5-phase instructional design model are Analysis, Design, Development, Implementation, and Evaluation with each step having an outcome that feeds into the next step in the sequence. It should be noted that the ADDIE model is authentically cyclic in nature with multiple feedback loop potentials presenting at each phase of the process.

The 5 phases of ADDIE model in expanded explanatory format are as follows: 


  • During analysis, the designer identifies the learning problem, the goals and objectives, the audience’s needs, existing knowledge, and any other relevant characteristics.  Analysis also considers the learning environment, any constraints, the learning vehicle delivery options, as well as project timeline(s).


  • A systematic process of specifying learning objectives. Detailed storyboards and prototypes are often made, and the end user-interface concert with content is determined in this phase.


  • The actual creation (production) of the content and learning materials based on the Design phase. Note: The author prefers to introduce Rapid Prototyping in the development phase in order to “leap forward in time” so to speak with regard to identifying potential problems and taking proper remedial action.


  • During the implementation phase the plan – program is put into action and a procedure for training the learner and teacher is developed. Materials are delivered or distributed to the learner group(s). After delivery and use by the learners the effectiveness of the training materials is evaluated.


  • This phase consists of formative and summative evaluation. Formative evaluation is present in each stage of the ADDIE process and exists as pre-determined metrics. Summative evaluation consists of tests designed for criterion-related referenced items and providing opportunities for feedback from the users by way of demonstrated skill – knowledge acquisition and or performance. Revisions are made as necessary and the flexibility to install revisions should be present in every phase of the ADDIE model.

Instructional Design – A Start Point

Instructional Design is a process:  Instructional Design is a systemic process derived primarily from instructional and learning theory focused on creating instructional materials in accordance with exacting specifications.  The process requires analysis of learner needs – end goals, subsequent design and development of instructional materials and modalities, and the employment of metrics – assessment – evaluation to determine the overall effectiveness of the process proper.

Note:  By one formal definition a “process” has a logical start point, however, it has no end point.  Therefore, an authentic process entails continual evaluation and modification that “shapes” the process to the best model possible at any given point in time.  Instructional Design is ever evolving and in a very real sense of the word, it is organic.