Learning experience design, or LXD, is an emerging field focusing on creating and improving learning experiences. Learning experience design is a holistic and interdisciplinary approach incorporating user experience design (UX), instructional design (ID), cognitive psychology, and more. 

LX designers must also understand how to collaborate with stakeholders and learners to create the best learning experience possible. These experiences might be physical, digital, or involve AR/VR technology. 

What Are the Steps of Learning Design?

There are differences between learning design vs. instructional design, as instructional design typically focuses on creating instructional content and educational materials. 

An LX designer focuses on different learning design examples: group discussions, online multimedia courses, or a local business or nonprofit trip. An LXD professional also focuses on all steps of the learner journey and how each step can be improved to better support learners and cater to their goals and motivations. 

In contrast, an LX designer would research university demographics, create a way for students to provide actionable feedback, and establish flexible and incremental goals to establish whether the learning experience was successful. These days, there are now LXD degrees at established colleges and universities. 

At Jackrabbit, we take a 5-phase approach to effective learning design. The 5 phases are the following: discover, clarify, prototype, playbook, and scale. The Discover phase focuses on conducting all relevant research for program success, including establishing learner needs and analyzing existing data. The Clarify phase focuses on bringing that Discover phase to life through two deliverables: a Project Brief and Design document outlining critical decisions and a Core Evidence and Standards document that describes all relevant standards and success metrics. 

The Prototype phase is a phase where one portion of the course is designed and developed. This will serve as a functional sample that will be refined and improved until created at scale. The Playbook phase involves the creation of a guide of both information/resources and is a “living deliverable” that allows for full-scale production. The last phase, the Scale phase, focuses on creating programs at scale, and our experts move into a “project management” phase where we execute the learning experience. 

Instructional Design Process Models

As mentioned earlier, learning experience design leverages instructional design quite heavily. Therefore, it’s critical to have a good understanding of ID to understand LXD. Instructional design, or ID, is a field that has existed for several decades, and there are various established instructional design models and theories. Some include Bloom’s Taxonomy, Merrill’s First Principles of Instruction, and the Addie model example. The ADDIE model stands for Analyze, Design, Develop, Implement, and Evaluate. The ID field first emerged around World War II, when training thousands of people using educational materials became necessary.

Instructional design concepts explore the right materials and methods to deliver educational content and consider how students learn. However, learning experience design takes a more learner-first approach and establishes ways to ensure the learning experience can consistently improve. Both ID and LXD professionals must be able to communicate and collaborate with learners and stakeholders. 

These models are designed to help learners learn and retain as much knowledge/skills as possible. It also involves working as a team to create deliverables such as job aids, brochures, presentational materials, and other instructional content. 

Different instructional design model examples focus on different aspects of instructional design. Bloom’s Taxonomy classifies learner objectives into six categories, while Merrill’s First Principles Of Instruction take a problem-solving approach to educational content.

91% of organizations consider instructional design skills a priority, with instructional designers transforming outcomes at institutions like nonprofits, corporations, and government agencies. At Jackrabbit LX, we help organizations go beyond instructional design. With our expertise in LXD, together, we can create truly transformative experiences for learners. 

How Jackrabbit LX Can Help

Our expert team can help you improve your existing learning experience or design one from the ground up, and we tailor our metrics and KPIs to your organizational success. Our consultants, designers, and producers have years of LX design experience, and we’ve created learning experiences for organizations in various industries and sectors. 

We take the time to understand your business and what you’re trying to accomplish. Our 5-phase process was designed specifically to sidestep and overcome challenges in the LX design process, whether you’re trying to revamp a specific portion of your course or are trying to redesign a sales training program for your employees.

94% of employees will stay longer at a career that supports their training and development, and it’s more important than ever for organizations of all kinds to think about learning experiences. 

Interested in learning how our LX design can lead to transformative outcomes? Contact us to find out more about how Jackrabbit can help with your organization’s specific learning experience design goals.

Join Us!


Whether you’re a seasoned professional or simply curious about the industry, we’re delighted to have you join us.

In our newsletter, we share our views on insightful articles, trends, and updates from the learning experience design landscape.