Bill Brandon’s Book Review: Performance-Based Lesson Mapping

The Book

Performance-Based Lesson Mapping is Guy Wallace’s 17th book on the design of training and performance support. Like all of his previous works, this is a very practical book written for those in the fields of instructional system design or learning experience design: people who want to know what to do and how to do it successfully. His methods scale from small projects to large, and are similar to design thinking and Agile.

Another reviewer describes Guy’s book as a “handbook for collaborating with key stakeholders to produce performance-based instructional activities.” The book is also an extensive guide to using facilitated group process to plot instructional activities into lesson maps, turning analysis data into modular curriculum development.

In my opinion, the best way to read this book is to follow Guy’s recommendation and read it straight through the first time, including the table of contents and all the appendices. As you go, use little stick-on flags to mark the places that seem most applicable to your situation and process. Then go back and re-read the flagged sections, keeping in mind Guy’s motto: “Adopt what you can and adapt the rest”. If reading the entire book straight through is not an approach you favor or if you are in a hurry, take Guy’s alternative recommendation and scan sections, chapters, and headers to target them for an in-depth follow-up review.

Why take either of these approaches? Every designer of instructional systems and instructional experiences is faced with a unique situation in a unique culture. Guy delivers a tremendous overview of what he has learned and taught over decades of practice in many organizations, and the reader must make decisions about what will work for that situation and culture.

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For the rest of Bill’s review – please go here.

To see all of my books go to my Amazon Author’s Page – here.


Here’s the story of when and why Bill and I first met – on Worm Island – and then discovered that 40+ years later:


Saturday HPT Video Matinee

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In 2017 I started using Skype to enable me to broaden my reach beyond F2F recordings. Then in 2020 I started using Zoom.

Again, I have posted each of these videos on YouTube. They, unfortunately, are on multiple YouTube sites. Please use this link to the Index – here.

Guy’s HPT Video Series

The HPT Video Series … formerly known as the HPT Practitioner and HPT Legacy Video Series … was started by Guy W. Wallace in 2008 as a means of sharing the diversity of HPT Practitioners, and the diversity of HPT Practices in the workplace and in academia.

The full set of videos – over 125 – may be found and linked to – here.

HPT – Human Performance Technology – is the application of science – the “technology” part – for Performance Improvement.

As the late Don Tosti noted, “All performance is a human endeavor.”

Whether your label for HPT is that, or Performance Improvement, or Human Performance Improvement, it is all about Evidence Based Practices for Performance Improvement at the Individual level, the Team level, the Process level, the Department level, the Functional level, the Enterprise level, and at the level of Society/World.

HPT Practitioners might operate at any of these levels, as this Video Series clearly demonstrates.

Although ISPI – the International Society for Performance Improvement is the professional home of many HPT Practitioners – the concepts, models, methods, tools and techniques are not limited to any one professional affinity group or professional label.

ISPI just happens to be where I learned about HPT – and has been my professional home since 1979.

This Series Has Evolved Since 2008

These videos were first posted on Google Video, then they were moved to Blink, and now they may all be found on YouTube. And my name for them has changed as well…

HPT Practitioner Video Podcasts and HPT Legacy Video Podcasts

– Practitioner Series – short 2-10 minutes, following a script. Intended to show the diversity of HPT and HPT Practitioners. (2008-2018)

– Legacy Series – longer 15-40+ minutes, also scripted, with added stories of other NSPI/ ISPI’ers from the earlier days of the Society or others who were of great influence. Intended to capture the stories of the people who influenced us. (2008-2018)

– HPT Video Series (2019+) – is a continuation of the first two types of videos in this series, but with less focus on capturing NSPI/ISPI members – and expanding out to any and all who use Evidence Based Practices in Performance Improvement regardless of any affiliation with ISPI or not.

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Curriculum Architecture Design (CAD)

I’ve been doing CADs since my 1st at Motorola as an employee. As an ISD Consultant I’ve done 76.

Why Bother?

To meet the real business needs of the company, any training curriculum must meet the true needs of those people who are performing the work. If the curriculum is based on a review or brainstorming of subject matter or topics, rather than a systematic analysis of the work processes and the human job performance requirements, it is likely to contain training that is not directly relevant to the job.

In addition, it is unlikely that all the key training will be identified—subject matter experts (SMEs) tend to miss the practical but necessary application training that true practitioners require. Also, the curriculum is likely to end up with redundant coverage of related generic training areas (such as negotiating skills, delegation, etc.), but it may lack coverage of tasks in the actual work processes that the individuals must perform.

Finally, without a CAD approach to each target audience, the multiple curriculum efforts are likely to end up with redundant coverage of training content areas (such as policies, procedures, systems, shared tasks, teamwork, interpersonal styles and communications, etc.). A non-CAD approach across multiple audiences produces a higher than necessary first cost (due to redundant development efforts), plus much higher T&D maintenance costs (which are due to the unnecessary redundancy of content).

And, T&D that is content-oriented rather than performance-oriented may lack coverage of tasks, outputs, and standards derived from a model of the actual work outputs, tasks, and processes that the individuals must perform.

A 4-Phase Curriculum Architecture Design (CAD) effort designs a performance-based modular Learning Path and Individual Planning Guides, incorporating the client’s existing Information and Instruction as appropriate.

Guy has conducted 76 CAD projects since 1982, and did his first as an employee at Motorola in 1981.

He was a co-author of the first published article on Curriculum Architecture in Training Magazine in 1984:

T&D/L&D Path & Individual Planning Guides

Planning Guides

A Path or Journey Map or ???


Informing the Next Phase in ISD – Another Short Video on pb-ISD & PI-BBII

pb-ISD & PI = performance-based Instructional Systems Design & Performance Improvement Beyond But Including Instruction

This video is 1:31 minutes in length.

Subscribe to my YouTube Channel:

See my books on my Amazon Author’s Page – here.

Focus on the Performance Requirements – and Enable Them!


WOINA – Another Short Video on pb-ISD & PI-BBII

pb-ISD & PI = performance-based Instructional Systems Design & Performance Improvement Beyond But Including Instruction

This video is 2:13 minutes in length.

Subscribe to my YouTube Channel:

See my books on my Amazon Author’s Page – here.

Focus on the Performance Requirements – and Enable Them!


A Focus on Performance Outputs & Tasks Is Not Something New

From a 1972/1973 Praxis Workshop

Praxis was the consulting firm of the late Geary A. Rummler, PhD, and the late Thomas F. Gilbert, PhD, back in the 1970s.


A Focus on Performance Outputs & Tasks Enables Results Measurement

A focus on Topics does not lend itself to Results Measurement.

See the 407 page PDF of that set of workshop materials – here.

See my 30 pages of notes from 1980 – here.