Stages of Teaching and Training Cycle
The teaching and training cycle is an ongoing learning process for the continuous improvement of a training program. Anytime you participate in a training and learning program whether virtually or in a traditional classroom, whether developed from scratch or taught by an external trainer to your organisation. It goes through a range of processes to develop an essential training skills model. The training cycle begins before the training program is conducted and continues after the program is completed. The emphasis is not simply on a training event itself but also on the planning, development and review stages.
The 5 stages of the teaching and training cycle are as follows:
- Identify needs
This is the initial stage where the training cycle starts. This step consists of research based on training need analysis where the trainer needs to identify the knowledge gap, and special learning needs of the students and reflect individual differences. While working on the reasons for assessing and analysing needs, you may discover that the relevant issue can be addressed by something other than training. For instance, using previously developed online content that can be delivered asynchronously or synchronously. The analysis should tell you exactly what content should be taught and how it should be taught as part of the training session to determine training objectives.
Using the collected information, they develop a plan to manage any learning difficulties and highlight the learning objectives. This information is collected by conducting student interviews, having conversations and using application forms.
Although this is usually described as the first stage in the training cycle it should be continued throughout the learning journey.
- Plan and design
Planning starts with what the training aims to accomplish, whereas, designing consists of all the planned objectives and ways to achieve them. These objectives may include whether training would be conducted in a classroom setting or virtually, the inclusion of minimum core in the course and other important aspects related to the subject.
Possible options to achieve learning objectives includes;
- Instructor-led classroom training
- Virtual training
- Self-paced e-learning
- On-the-job training
- Blended learning solutions
It further includes designing a good lesson with the use of session plans, schemes of work and creating a variety of different resources. You structure what you want to address which includes determining when and which information is presented when to conduct learning activities and when to have assessments. Experienced teachers and essay writers always follow a similar structure.
Designing includes planning the flow of information, assessment and other learning activities to give the whole process a logical pattern that builds upon the previous session.
Additionally, as a trainer, you could ask yourself the following questions to get a better understanding of the elements of this phase:
- Numbers of attendees for the training
- Planning the time required for delivering the knowledge
- Level of your expertise as a trainer
- Special requirements for students with learning disabilities
After extensive planning and design, this phase caters to conducting the sessions or taking the training course (online or self-study). At times, they have to deliver the lesson along with maintaining the session’s decorum. Delivering the lesson requires planning, practice experience and facilitation skills with different learning styles and individual learning needs of the students. Delivering knowledge must incorporate the use of multiple resources, address minimum core requirements, and encourage student independence and group work. An effective training program allows the attendees to participate actively in the learning process and to practice their new skills and knowledge. Teachers must have clear aims and objectives for each lesson. The classroom must not be unruly. You can do the Effective Classroom Management course to add to your CPD.
Delivering the required knowledge is a trainer’s area of expertise, but how to assess if the learners picked the concepts correctly? To answer such a question, simply conduct assessments, quizzes and tests for learners to measure their level of knowledge and progression. These formative and summative assessments gauge the learner’s ability to receive and retain knowledge. These assessments must be planned in the 2nd stage along with the course content.
To conduct assessments online, the following examples have shown to be effective in the online learning environment:
- Written assignments: short essays, research papers and case studies to be submitted electronically, assessed through peer feedback, assignment tools or tools such as Turnitin.
- Online discussions: discussion boards, blogs or wiki. An instructor can initiate a discussion, it is good for community building, use of forums tools, etc.
- Concept mapping: using a visual representation of the connection between concepts learned, brainstorming and mind-mapping tool.
- Presentations: they can be modified to the online learning environment such as Canva, Slide deck or Poster. Synchronous web-conferencing tools can also be used.
- Tests and exams: multiple-choice, short or long answers can be delivered using OWL. To make it more interactive, Quizlet and Kahoot applications can be used to create fast-paced interactive learning games. There are also other apps such as GimKit and Plickers that can add a game-show experience to the classroom.
It is recommended to record the progress and achievements as per the requirements of the internal and external awarding bodies. Always make sure that the assessments must reflect the course content to make the learning process more effective.
Evaluating the overall sessions clarify if the trainer has accomplished the planned objectives. The effectiveness can be measured by taking student feedback about the training in form of end of course feedback/ surveys or online polls as when hosting webinars you can use built-in tools for conducting polls. Some specialised platforms like SurveyMonkey allow you to create and send surveys online. . It highlights the areas of improvement for the trainer to take care of for the upcoming sessions. Lastly, it calls for recommendations to improve or tweak needs for future programs. The student feedback helps the trainer in measuring the effectiveness of course content, methods of delivery, assessment strategies and the learner’s satisfaction.
The ideal time to collect feedback is immediately after the session and then again a few weeks after the session so that the students get enough time to apply their theoretical knowledge practically at work. The feedback must contain developmental and positive comments to keep the students motivated to work better.
Teachers and trainers are experts in subject knowledge in their specialist areas. To deliver the knowledge effectively, the trainer must adhere to the stages of the teaching and training cycle. These stages are demonstrated mostly in a circular form because it is an ongoing process. There is always room for improvement in the teaching and learning process. Several Education and Training courses provide the necessary training for professional teachers.