“A designer knows he has achieved perfection not when there is nothing left to add, but when there is nothing left to take away.” Antoine de Saint-Exupery
Mary Hoddy, UW Academic Staff Emerita, Facilitator and Consultant, offered this information during a train the trainer program and I thought it was so perfect I should share it with you.
It is a table titled The Science of Training: A Summary. It shows what needs to happen before the training, during the training and after the training. It was published by Global Learning Partners and is a summary of research published by Eduardo Salas, Scott Tennenbaum, Kurt Kraiger and Kimberly Smith-Jentsch: The Science of Training and Development in Organizations: What Matters … Read the rest
“Confusion is a word we have invented for an order which is not understood.” Henry Miller
I had a true AHA! moment last week that an organizing principle can sometimes confuse learners. For years, when I have taught trainers how to create specific, observable and measurable learning objectives, I’ve shown them the final product first. As a matter of fact, I’ve shown them several final products. And invariably, the participants’ design process was less than stellar.
Let me provide some context.
I teach a three stage learning objective design process. First, based on a needs assessment and the resulting learning goals, we identify the key content for a lesson plan using a template I provide. Second, we determine the desired … Read the rest
“Success does not consist in never making mistakes but in never making the same one a second time.” George Bernard Shaw
I just attended a three- day marketing seminar conducted by a self-proclaimed curriculum design expert. It was very disappointing to see once again what happens when a trainer ignores the basics and sets learners up to fail.
She made ten glaring mistakes. Here are the first five:
- Never say “no” when a participant asks a question or makes a comment. It immediately becomes a rejection of the person, who will not risk volunteering questions or comments again. Time and again in this class, the trainer would either respond “no” to a question or comment, with and sometimes without further
“Boring and effective are mutually exclusive attributes in learning.” Michael Allen
I’m gearing up to teach an online course on How to Design Dynamic Learning curriculum. This has led me to consider the reasons why some training design results in ineffective training programs.
I came up with 35 reasons. In no particular order of importance, here they are:
- Wrong reason for the training;
- Wrong target group;
- Unclear goal;
- Wrong content;
- Wrong methods;
- Desired level of learning not identified;
- Learning activities cannot achieve the desired levels of learning;
- Heavy reliance on lecture and PowerPoint;
- Places all of the training content on PowerPoint slides;
- Lack of specific, observable and measurable learning objectives;
- Disconnect between objectives and learning activities;
- Over reliance on
“My greatest strength as a consultant is to be ignorant and ask a few questions.” Peter Drucker
There is a real difference between how an internal corporate curriculum designer and an external design consultant can receive and incorporate feedback from document reviewers.
An internal curriculum designer (ICD) can set deadlines for responses and reasonably expect the deadlines to be met. The ICD can specify and limit the type of feedback to corrections and suggestions. The ICD can use a corporate calendar to schedule a meeting to discuss any additional information or clarification that is needed.
It doesn’t work that way for an external design consultant (EDC). The EDC is contracted to create new curriculum and/or revise existing curriculum. In either … Read the rest
“To become different from what we are, we must have some awareness of what we are.” Eric Hoffer
In my work as a curriculum designer, I am frequently expected to do something with the content of a document that is unclear, incomplete, or ill considered.
My immediate reaction is to write an email asking one or more questions to obtain clarification and/or additional information, or prompt reconsideration. At the time, I believe that I only have one question to ask. This may be because I am an unrealistic optimist. (Is that redundant?)
As I read further into a document, I write another email each time I have another question. It never occurs to me to wait until I have closely … Read the rest