Educational design research (EDR) addresses educational problems in real-world settings and has two primary goals: to develop knowledge, and to develop solutions. EDR tends to evolve through three main phases—analysis, design, and evaluation—each of which may be repeated multiple times. EDR is particularly powerful because it addresses real needs in the here-and-now through the development of a solution to a problem, while also generating knowledge that can be used in the future. It can offer researchers and practitioners the opportunity to produce interventions of real value—tools, approaches, theories, and products—tested in the field and shown to be effective.
The "7 Things You Should Know About..." series from the EDUCAUSE Learning Initiative (ELI) provides concise information on emerging learning technologies. Each brief focuses on a single technology and describes what it is, where it is going, and why it matters to teaching and learning. Use these briefs for a no-jargon, quick overview of a topic and share them with time-pressed colleagues.
In addition to the "7 Things You Should Know About…" briefs, you may find other ELI resources useful in addressing teaching, learning, and technology issues at your institution. To learn more, please visit the ELI Resources page.
For a deeper discussion of this topic, see Conducting Educational Design Research, by Susan McKenney and Thomas C Reeves