Training today takes many forms. It isn’t the old apprentice, journeyman, and master model. Nor is it the model of producing written content or even content to be delivered by a live instructor. Today’s training world requires being reactive to the student and how adults learn. That means that there isn’t a one size fits all solution.
When you say training to the public at large the first thing they’re going to think about is an instructor standing at the front of the room and teaching some subject. Whether this is a memory about their childhood education that they weren’t able to repress or a more current technical training memory, it’s the one most folks have.
We’ve written and delivered all kinds of training including Microsoft’s Designing and Developing Microsoft SharePoint 2010 Applications. We’ve also released SharePoint Shepherd instructor led training.
If you’re looking for a team to help you develop instructor led materials, you’ll be hard pressed to find anyone with more passion or experience.
While instructor led training may be the way most people think of when they think of training but it’s rarely the way they think that they want to be trained. Educational research like the research discussed in The Adult Learner, says roughly “Adult learners need to be trained at the moment in time that they need the learning (readiness), why they need to know a piece of information (need to know), that they have the foundational concepts necessary to integrate the new information (foundation), and that they have an understanding of the problem they are trying to solve (self-concept). The training must be focused on solving problems (orientation) and the motivation for learning must map to the internal motivations of the student (motivation).” The way to do that is to deliver a set of self-service options where they can get what they want when they want it.
Solutions like the SharePoint Shepherd’s Guide for End Users: Corporate Edition are self-service solutions designed to be searchable tools which users can use to find immediate answers to the questions they have. By responding at the moment of need with step-by-step instructions and screen cast videos, the guide is structured around self-service and productivity – without the need for the user to maintain a persistent learning.
Sometimes the solution isn’t a searchable self-service system. Productivity aids – which are either planning tools or tools used while performing the operation are different. They’re ideally integrated into how things are done. (For more on job aids check out our review of Job Aids and Performance Support.)
We’ve developed all kinds of productivity aids from decision trees to visual references designed to help users know where to go when they’re trying to navigate a new system. For instance, check out our SharePoint User Interface Quick Reference. It shows users how they can navigate around SharePoint.
Whether we’re creating video for other sites like Pluralsight (See Gathering Good Requirements for Developers and The Art and Practice of Information Architecture) or developing our own SharePoint DVDs, we’ve deliver the highest quality video technically and instructionally.