"Train the Trainer"

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Sorry about the lack of posts, but I’m am right into the middle of a 5 day course called “Train the Trainer” which is run by the Australian Institute of Management. This course, among other things, will qualify me as a Microsoft Certified Trainer, so if you feel like flying me somewhere nice in the world for a custom tailored course, I’m sure that something could be arranged 🙂

Seriously though, this course is right outside my normal comfort zone in relation to subject matter and discipline, it is harder work that I expected and this entire week really is a write-off in relation to work activities, blogging and the like.

But, it has really opened my eyes actually, to how adults learn, and the huge difference in approach from the relatively easy task of writing educational blogs like this one, to taking the material, distilling it and turning it into learning outcomes that adhere to various key principles of adult learning. Just to produce a 20 minute lesson for tomorrow has taken me three freakin’ hours! (with practice of course, it gets faster)

But more importantly, what is a “learning outcome”? Funnily enough it defines “what a successful learner will be able to do at the end of a session.”

They stress that this outcome are defined so that the aims are concrete and measurable.

If you have read the “project failure…” series, ROI, or the organisational maturity posts, you will see a parallel here. Seems that even to teach a concept, you need to start out with an outcome that can be quantified, so you know if you have achieved your goal as a trainer.

So with the current SharePoint projects that you are currently working on, can you articulate what your outcomes are? Are they measurable?

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One Response to "Train the Trainer"

  1. Mark Miller says:

    One of the measurements I use when creating training material is that it takes between 4 to 8 hours to create an hour’s worth of material. This has been consistent for me for years.

    I think the sequence of creation you are being shown is correct. Start by determining what you want the participants to be able to do at the end of the module. Create a hands-on lab, document the steps to complete the lab and finally, setup the lecture material to show what is needed to understand the steps of the lab. For beginning trainers, this seems upsidedown, but what it does is keep you focused on the outcome.

    Glad to hear you’re having fun.

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