Tip #964:  Twelve Actions that Result in Effective Training Programs

There are four key adult learning principles that need to be put into specific practice for a training program to be effective. It doesn’t matter whether the training is virtual, classroom, or e-learning, the curriculum should incorporate the following:

Adult Learning Principle #1: Set the Learners Up for Success. This is accomplished by:

  • Identifying the desired learning levels based on the specified learning goals.
  • Setting specific, observable, and measurable learning objectives.
  • Ensuring that the learning activities are learning-level appropriate.

Adult Learning Principle #2: Build on What the Learners Know. This is accomplished by:

  • Beginning with an activity that helps participants see the value of the training content.
  • Using activities that enable participants to indicate and/or demonstrate their level of experience and expertise.
  • Limiting lecture to information that is new to the participants.

Adult Learning Principle #3: Engage the Learners. This is accomplished by:

  • Using learning activities that enable all participants to be successfully involved.
  • Providing learning content that is relevant to the participants’ interests and needs.
  • Encouraging and validating the participants’ active involvement.

Adult Learning Principle #4:  Let the Learners Demonstrate What They Have Learned. This is accomplished by:

  • Having the participants practice their new knowledge and skills as they learn them.
  • Ensuring that the learning activities build the participants’ confidence in their own
  • Meeting the learning objectives.

In summary: Have specific, observable, and measurable learning objectives. Discover and build on the participants’ existing knowledge. Make the content practical and relevant. Use a variety of interactive learning activities. Encourage active participation. Enable participants to practice as they learn. Limit lecture to information new to the participants. Build participants’ confidence in their own competence. And meet the learning objectives.

Question: What other adult learning principles or training actions would you add?

May your learning be sweet- and safe.


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