Morrison, Ross, and Kemp Model

Presenters: Angela Jimenez and Jennifer Peebles

The Morrison, Ross and Kemp Model, more commonly known as the Kemp Model, "emphasizes the adoption of continuous implementation and evaluation through the instructional design process" (Hanley, 2009).

According to Morrison, Ross and Kemp (2004), there are nine key elements to instructional design. To learn more about each element, please click on Figure 1.
Morrison-Ross-Kemp.jpg Figure 1. The Morrison, Ross and Kemp Model.
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The nine elements of the model are independent of each other; they do not need to be linear and there is no particular start or end point.

The oval design of the Kemp model represents the flexibility available to the user. A designer can begin at any point in the model and follow through the remaining steps in whichever sequence works best for the instructional design situation. The process lends itself well to iterations, so users can revisit steps as necessary. This model presents three elements that usually are absent in other models: project planning, project management and support services (Hanley, 2009).

According to Michael Hanley (2009), the Morrison, Ross and Kemp model has three characteristics that differentiate it from other models:
1. Instruction is considered from the perspective of the learner
2. Takes a general system or even object- oriented view towards instructional development
3. Emphasizes management of the instructional design process

Learning Theory

We concluded that the Morrison, Ross and Kemp Model falls under the cognitivism theory because it “describes a holistic approach to instructional design that considers all factors in the environment,” recognizing that there is a process behind the model (Hanley,2009). According to Jerome Bruner & Lev Vygotsky, the cognitivism implies deep processing: exploring, organizing, and synthesizing content (Mergel, 1998).

The premise of this model where the instruction is considered from the perspective of the learner could be related with the cognitivism approach where “learners process, store, and retrieve information for use” (Mergel, 1998).

Another link that appears between the Kemp Model and the cognitivism theory, is the use of a schema – an internal knowledge structure. In the model, the design and development process is defined as an “iterative cycle that needs constant planning, design, development and assessment to ensure effective instruction” (Hanley, 2009).

E-Learning Design

According to Gustafson and Branch (2002), the Kemp model is a “classroom-oriented” model—and based on our analysis, this includes the virtual classroom as well. The model focuses on the design on the perspective of the learner by recommending that the following questions are answered during the design process:

(1) What level of readiness do individual students need for accomplishing the objectives?
(2) What instructional strategies are most appropriate in terms of objectives and student characteristics?
(3) What media or other resources are most suitable?
(4) What support is needed for successful learning?
(5) How is achievement of objectives determined?
(6) What revisions are necessary if a tryout of the program does not match expectations?

The format of the Kemp model lends itself very well to e-learning. By answering the questions above and following all the elements of the Kemp model, an instructional designer creating online curriculum would successfully explore all the options available for online learning. Since the e-learning environment is ever-changing, the Kemp model’s dedication to re-evaluation and iterative cycles will be very valuable to the designer.


Akbulut, Y. (2007, April 1). Implications of two well-known models for instructional designers in distance education: Dick-
Carey versus Morrison-Ross-Kemp. Retrieved from

Gustafson, K.L., & Branch, R.M. (2002). Survey of instructional development models. Syracuse, NY: Eric Clearinghouse on
Information and Technology.

Hanley, M. (2009, June 10). Discovering instructional design 11: the Kemp Model. Retrieved from

Kemp, J. E., Morrison, G. R., & Ross, S. V. (2004). Design effective instruction, (4th Ed.). New York: John Wiley & Sons.

Mappin, D., Phan, R., Kelly, M., & Bratt, S. (2004, October 2). Module 4: An overview of instructional systems design. Retrieved from

Mergel, B. (1998, May). Instructional Design and Learning Theory. Retrieved from