Stage 2 – Design

Once immersed in your world, Advantis uses the latest best practices research (related to the desired outcomes for each training module) to create case studies, problem scenarios, and practice exercises that relate back to actual management situations in your company’s environment.

Advantis uses a five-step process that significantly increases the probability of learning success with any group, of any size, on any topic.

1: Rationale

We identify the RATIONALE for each module and for each session within each module.

It is critical that course participants understand why they need to learn the material. Research demonstrates that if a learner values why they should learn something, the probability of their learning increases significantly. *

2: Outcomes

We list performance OUTCOMES for each training module, and for each session within each module.

Performance outcomes clearly identify what participants will be able to know and do because of the training.

Learning outcomes should always be learner-focused rather than instructor-focused.

  • Example of an instructor-focused outcome: “In this module, we will show you the link between your behaviour and effectiveness as a leader and improved business performance against the long term goals.”
  • Example of a learner-focused outcome: “After this module, you will be able to link your behaviour and effectiveness as a leader and improved business performance against the long term goals.”

3: Learning Activities

We outline learning ACTIVITIES for each session within each module.

Having identified the rationale for each module, and for each of the sessions that make up that module, and having outlined learner-focused outcomes in measurable terms, we next create learning activities that lead to attaining the stated outcomes. If the course participants engage in activities intentionally linked to the performance outcomes, there is a greater probability that they will attain those outcomes. Therefore, the design team takes care to include only those activities that link directly to producing the specified outcomes.

Research shows that learning takes place when there are a variety of activities that engage all senses.*

For example:

  • Case studies
  • Presentations
  • Brainstorming
  • Question and answer
  • Discussion groups and group projects
  • Role playing and simulations
  • Review games
  • Mini-lectures
  • Scenario problem solving
  • Illustrating
  • Practicing
  • Real-life work stories
  • Videos

Because we are results-focused, we keep in mind what some have called the C-I-A teaching model: Concept, Illustration, Application

  • First, we identify concepts from what the latest research tells us about the problem we are trying to solve or the outcome we are trying to achieve.
  • Next, we illustrate what the knowledge, skill, or ability might look like in action.
  • Finally, we create an opportunity for immediate application by the participants.

4: Evaluation

We determine means of EVALUATION for each module.

Advantis uses a variety of methods in each session to evaluate if learning is taking place. Participants are more likely to comprehend the material and be able to reproduce the desired outcomes back in the workplace if they are assessed during the modules. It is critical to note that it is performance that is being evaluated, not the person..

Evaluation can occur in many ways, including:

  • providing case studies and problem scenarios
  • requesting real or simulated demonstrations
  • having learners do exercises and self-evaluating
  • inviting peer correction or evaluation in teams
  • asking questions
  • written or oral tests
  • observation checklists

5: Feedback

We designate times for FEEDBACK within each session of each module.

Learners need regular feedback on their progress toward the outcomes. Feedback means letting the learner know when they are getting it right, and correcting them when they move off the mark. The course facilitators always frame corrective feedback in positive and encouraging terms. As with evaluation, feedback will always be in terms of outcomes and not the person.

The best time to offer feedback is immediately following evaluation. Since evaluation can possibly cause anxiety, immediate feedback reduces stress and builds confidence, which contributes to learning.

In summary

  • The RATIONALE identifies benefits for participants.
  • The OUTCOMES state the contract between course facilitators and participants by identifying what they will be able to know and do by the end of the session.
  • Interesting and interactive ACTIVITIES promote and even require the learners to participate in the process and focus on attaining outcomes.
  • Regular EVALUATION measures the degree to which participants are learning the outcomes.
  • Positive FEEDBACK reinforces learning and keeps participants on track toward the outcomes.

* H. Stolovitch & E. Keeps: Telling Aint Training. American Society for Training & Development, 2002.

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