Describes MODIA (a Method Of Designing Instructional Alternatives), and assesses its utility for planning instruction. MODIA is a computer-based system that helps planners construct a blueprint of instruction, analyze its operation, and estimate its cost. Although developed for the Air Force Air Training Command (ATC), MODIA is applicable to many situations where instruction reaches large numbers of students or involves scarce resources. MODIA was designed to be used at the operating level in ATC's technical schools because the experience and knowledge needed is found only at this level and changed operating procedures would more likely be accepted from actively involved training managers. ATC's evaluation showed, however, that training managers feel so constrained by policy that they do not take advantage of the opportunities MODIA provides. The author concludes that MODIA's potential can be realized only if it is used by policymaking organizations, with assistance from the operating level.
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