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This article presents a framework for understanding learning experience as an object for instructional design--as an object for design as well as research and understanding. Compared to traditional behavioral objectives or discrete cognitive skills, the object of experience is more holistic, requiring simultaneous attention to cognition, behavior, and affect--even agency and identity. An emphasis on learner experience necessarily puts learners front and center of design concerns. But experience involves more than the learner: it is a "transactional" construct involving a person's encounters with their world over time. The framework presents selected individual and situational qualities, as well as temporal dimensions that affect the nature and level of experience. A concluding section considers how a focus on learning experiences might guide professional practice, opening the door for transformative learning and deeper forms of learning impacts.


Used with permission by Educational Technology Publications.