Personally I am always ready to learn, although I do not always like being taught. ~ Winston Churchill
Our language is a fragile thang, er I mean thing.
In the epitomous 21 Reasons Why the English Language is Hard to Learn we are reminded that it is a small miracle that we can ever convey even the simplest of thoughts.
"Since there is no time like the present, he thought it was time to present the present."
I recently completed a course that was required by a client, dealing with a rather dry topic involving lots of federal regulations and such. I could listen to Screamo music longer than sitting through another minute of that ear-bleed-inducing training.
Why you ask?
It wasn't the content, however dry ... it was the delivery. Laced, no, submerged in acronyms, $22 words when an $8 word would suffice and an ad nauseum recitation of the same thing all blanketed in an unapologetic air of elitism.
In case you are not fond of my subtlety: the course was an awful, wasteful use of my afternoon.
Simply, there are steps to better training.
As a professional instructor with over 20 years of experience delivering dozens of topics to thousands of students from every walk of life, I deem this training a failure for three (3) primary reasons, that I will offer in a positive way for us to benefit:
Course creators / Instructors must:
- Understand the needs and expectations of their audience. Maybe they get up and walk out or maybe they engage but it is a basic form of respect (and classroom management) to know and understand each other's needs and expectations.
- Course creators / Instructors must have an investment in their students actual learning outcome. I will likely devote an entire post regarding training versus testing but suffice to say if it is training, then we must make sure our students receive actual training and not a series of tests cloaked as training. Testing reinforces and validates what is learned, it doesn't provide the actual education.
- Course creators / Instructors must never believe or act like they are the smartest person in the room nor feel compelled to demonstrate it at every opportunity. Should be a no-brainer but boy do I see this play out a lot. Arrogance is unattractive in any setting but when you are locked in a classroom for a week with a Spoiler, this can create its own level of pain and discomfort. And the desired learning never occurs when a student is in pain.
Reminds me of an old saying ......
"The dump was so full that it had to refuse more refuse."