Instructional Design: SAM Model 

The Successive Approximation Model or SAM is an iterative instructional design model. With every step of production being reviewed and repeated. The model can be simplified and broken down into three phases, namely Preparation, Design and Development.

Preparation Phase

This phase involves gathering all the parties, resources and material in order to begin prototyping and storyboarding. One of the advantages of SAM is that it is well suited to working with subject matter experts, as every step is revisited and reviewed. As such it is important to establish your channels and frequency of communication to ensure there is less delay to production. 

Design Phase

Development of working assets starts during this phase and follows a cycle of design, prototype/storyboard, review which is then repeated until the design is finalised. During this phase it is essential that every party involved is able to conceptualise the product before it is developed. This extensive design phase benefits projects where the content is complex and will require considerable review before development can take place. 

Development Phase

The development phase follows a unique approach whereby the product is implemented and evaluated once development has occurred. This process is repeated until the final product is achieved. Having the instructional design model follow through development is a unique approach that allows the team to optimise the content’s performance through rigorous review.

As an instructional design model, SAM is best suited for complex material that involves subject matter experts as every iteration of every step is revisited and reviewed to ensure the final product aligns with the clients needs. This can model can slow production down and can be difficult to organise with many parties involved. It is advised to plan out the production steps and feedback in advance to ensure there are no delays. 

Choosing the right instructional design model will have a considerable impact on the production process, project plan and deadline. This all contributes towards the students learning experience, and ultimately their progression through the learning outcomes. 



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