Instructional Design for eLearning Certificate

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This fully online noncredit certificate program prepares you to work as an instructional designer in a changing technology landscape. Through self-paced, guided activities, you’ll learn relevant theories of adult learning, interaction design, and multimedia learning within a practical, authentic framework. You’ll study both traditional and contemporary instructional design models while gaining hands-on experience with real-world design challenges.

By the end of the program, you’ll be invigorated with new ideas for ways to provide interactive experiences online, including at least one portfolio-quality instructional artifact in the form of an eLearning module. 

Course Format

This is an asynchronous 12-week certificate program with an instructor guiding you through each week of the course. There are deadlines each week of the course to keep you on track. Some of the benefits of this format include:

  • flexibility to access the course and complete assignments based on your schedule
  • interaction with your instructor and fellow students in asynchronous course discussions
  • your instructor is consistently available to answer questions and actively provides feedback and direction on assignments and projects
  • new modules open each week to keep you on track and engaged with new content

With this certificate, participants will be equipped to:

  • describe instructional design models and learning theories and frameworks and be able to apply learning theories and principles in instructional designs.
  • evaluate digital technologies and methods for distance learning, including contemporary trends in eLearning design.
  • design inclusive, accessible, effective online training experiences that align with business and learning outcomes.
  • reimagine existing face-to-face training for fully online delivery.

Program Outline

Online Certificate Program Overview (72 contact hours) Schedule
Introduction to eLearning Week 1
How Learning Works Week 2
Distance Learning and Adults Week 3
User Experience and digital learning environments Week 4
Writing for ID Week 5
Structuring instructional content Week 6
Multimedia Learning Theory Week 7
Assessment and Evaluation Week 8
Learner motivation and gamification Week 9
eModule intensive (dedicated work week) Week 10
Project Management Week 11
Leadership and emotional Intelligence Week 12

Note: Program participants should register themselves. After you register, we'll email your confirmation along with a username and password to use throughout the program. Registrations are not transferable.

Tecnology and Time Requirements


  • Time & Technology: While primarily asynchronous, two group projects will require synchronous scheduling with groupmates; therefore, students will need to have some flexibility in scheduling during the 12 weeks of the certificate, but the times are negotiable.
  • Newer computer: Students must have a working computer that is able to run modern software applications. Typically, this means a computer that is not more than 3 years old. It will be difficult to complete this certificate with just a tablet or with an older computer. 
  • Webcam/Microphone - Headset: Students must have a functional webcam and microphone that allow them to interact fluidly with others online.

Student Testimonial

Professional Development Webinars

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Free webinars give you a glimpse into the course experience as well as practical insights and tools to put to work immediately. 

Watch recordings of webinars in your area of interest and register for the fall webinar series on leadership starting August 25.

Let's Connect!

Lisa Beckham, Professional Development Enrollment Advisor

Meet Lisa Beckham

As your enrollment advisor, I'm here to help you choose which programs are the best fit to meet your career goals. There are three ways to connect with me: give me a call at 612-301-3091, email me, or schedule an appointment on my calendar below.

More About Me

I work with an extremely talented enrollment team where I advise adult learners about professional development programs to help them achieve their career goals. Before working for the University of Minnesota, I spent six years working with College Possible, a nonprofit organization that supports students in gaining access to and navigating through college. When not at work, I love reading fantasy books, watching goofy cartoons, traveling, and walking for exercise. I also enjoy cooking, baking, and playing board games.