It has been a long time since I decided to post something here on my blog. Well since it is getting new digs, it seems proper to post something now.
I’d like to comment on a couple of things. First the research on instructors that are in fields of communication and writing is currently under analysis. One of the more striking findings is that instructors instead of using the resources available at school in the forms of profesional development, lear most of their digital/new media knowledge by locating the information themselves.
In some ways, I think I understand the issue. Most of the technology training is not targeted enough for teachers to take advance of easily. For example, I went to training on how to use Canvas. The LMS that I currently use at UAH. Most of the training consisted of “this is what this feature does”, “this is what that feature does”. Little of the training was a “case study”, if you will, on how Canvas is actually used.
Case in point. I did training for LMS software called T-Square. Instead of talking about all of what T-square could and couldn’t do, I structured the training as a pathway. At the time, Gatech (where I was working) had specific goals that instructors needed to meet in using T-Square. So I structured the training as a “how do I get from where I am now” to “where I need to be”. In this way, instructors had a route to the answers they needed. I left the instructors with a handout for them to take with them that covered the most important points that they would need to follow in accomplishing the goal. I got many compliments on the training. I think this short session (1hr) was successful, mostly because it was relevant to the user audience.
So as I muse about the various technologies and digital processes instructors are being asked to embark on in this journey in the 21century, I would hope that trainers and educators alike recognize that training based on features its not nearly as helpful as training targeted to the audiences needs.
Now how many times have I said that in my techcomm classes? Looks like training instructors need to consider this advice a bit more.