A Decision Matrix for Designing Staff Training

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					A Decision Matrix for Designing Staff
             Training

            Ronnie Detrich
            Wing Institute
       The Fundamental Challenge

• All direct service organizations have many
  training responsibilities.
    Legally mandated trainings
    Job related training.
• Training often takes time and resources away from
  providing service.
    Inherent conflict for organizations.
              Fundamental Challenge

• For direct service agencies there are constraints on
  the design of training:
    Time
    Costs
    Logistics
       How to resolve inherent conflict between providing
        services and providing training?
               The Training Problem
• The most common method for training is group
  lecture.
    Assumes having information results in skill acquisition.
• Effective training is a set of instructional design
  questions.
    What is to be taught?
    How to deliver content to assure acquisition?
    How to assess performance?
    How to assure maintenance?
    How to increase generalization?
             Decision Making Matrix

• The goal of this paper is to provide a decision-
  making framework for designing training.
    Address the major components of training
    Addresses the advantages and disadvantages of each
     option.
               Decision Tree for Staff Training

                               Type of Skill
  Knowing How                                            Knowing About
Delivery of Content                                 Delivery of Content
                                                              Group Lecture
       Role Play
                                                         Small Group Discussion
       Modeling
                                                           Assigned Readings
   On the job training
                                                          Self-Paced Instruction


                         Performance Appraisal
              Methods of Performance Appraisal
                                  Written tests
                                   Discussion
                                Role Play Demos
                                 On job Demos

                              Maintenance
             Methods for enhancing maintenance
                                  Train and hope
                                Periodic Retraining
                           Informal Obs and Discussion
                          On Job Assessment & Feedback

                                Summary
           Type of Skill to be Trained

• Skinner (1974) distinguishes between two types of
  knowledge.
    Knowing About: can describe variables that influence a
     phenomenon.
       Example: Describe principles of reinforcement.


    Knowing How: can perform effectively
       Example: Shape the behavior of another.
• One form of knowing does not imply the other.
               Decision Tree for Staff Training

                               Type of Skill
  Knowing How                                            Knowing About
Delivery of Content                                Delivery of Content
                                                              Group Lecture
       Role Play
                                                         Small Group Discussion
       Modeling
                                                           Assigned Readings
   On the job training
                                                          Self-Paced Instruction


                         Performance Appraisal
              Methods of Performance Appraisal
                                  Written tests
                                   Discussion
                                Role Play Demos
                                 On job Demos

                              Maintenance
             Methods for enhancing maintenance
                                  Train and hope
                                Periodic Retraining
                           Informal Obs and Discussion
                          On Job Assessment & Feedback

                                Summary
                Knowing About:
       Delivery of Content: Group Lecture
• Advantages                         • Disadvantages
    Efficient use of trainer time       Difficult to arrange for all staff
                                          to attend training and still
    Easy for trainer to schedule         provide service
    Facilitates acquisition of          Length of session often
     verbal knowledge                     contributes to inattentiveness
    Minimizes distractions              Difficult to assure that staff
     during training                      actually know how to perform
                                          skill.
                                         Training outside of usual job
                                          context may result in poor
                                          generalization.
                                         Relevant stimuli may not be
                                          present.
              Knowing About:
Delivery of Content: Small Group Discussion

• Advantages                     • Disadvantages
    Training can be more            May be difficult for trainer
     individualized.                  to schedule if there is large
                                      number to be trained.
    Effective method for
                                     Difficult to directly assess
     developing verbal skills.        learner’s ability to perform
    Less impact on service           task.
     delivery.                       Relevant stimuli may not be
                                      present.
                                     Training out of context
                                      may limit generalization.
               Knowing About:
   Delivery of Content: Assigned Readings

• Advantages                        • Disadvantages
    Requires very little trainer       Difficult to determine if
     time.                               reading is occurring in
    Minimal disruption of               timely manner.
     service delivery.                  Difficult to assess learning
    Effective method for                other than content
     developing content                  knowledge.
     knowledge.                         Limited generalization.
              Knowing About:
 Delivery of Content: Self-Paced Instruction

• Advantages                        • Disadvantages
    Requires very little trainer       Significant time and
     time.                               resources required to
    Minimal disruption of               develop the materials.
     service delivery.                  Difficult to assess learning
    Effective method for                other than content
     developing content                  knowledge.
     knowledge.                         Limited generalization.
                                        Requires resources to assure
                                         that pacing occurs.
               Decision Tree for Staff Training

                               Type of Skill
  Knowing How                                            Knowing About
Delivery of Content                                 Delivery of Content
                                                              Group Lecture
       Role Play
                                                         Small Group Discussion
       Modeling
                                                           Assigned Readings
   On the job training
                                                          Self-Paced Instruction


                         Performance Appraisal
              Methods of Performance Appraisal
                                  Written tests
                                   Discussion
                                Role Play Demos
                                 On job Demos

                              Maintenance
             Methods for enhancing maintenance
                                  Train and hope
                                Periodic Retraining
                           Informal Obs and Discussion
                          On Job Assessment & Feedback

                                Summary
                 Knowing How:
          Delivery of Content: Role Play

• Advantages                         • Disadvantages
                                         Limited generalization to
    Actual performance is
                                          actual job setting.
     practiced so acquisition
                                         Requires more time from
     may be facilitated.
                                          trainer.
    Instruction can be                  More difficult to schedule
     structured to assure success.        trainer time.
    Feedback can sharpen                Relevant antecedent and
     performance.                         motivational variables may
                                          not be present during
                                          training.
                                         Role play may not capture
                                          all of the nuances of actual
                                          performance and context.
                 Knowing How:
          Delivery of Content: Modeling

• Advantages                   • Disadvantages
    Accurate performance is       Does not assure acquisition.
     demonstrated.                 Limited generalization to
                                    actual job performance.
                                   Relevant antecedent and
                                    motivational variables may
                                    not be present.
                                   Nuances of performance
                                    may not be demonstrated.
               Knowing How:
  Delivery of Content: On the Job Training

• Advantages                        • Disadvantages
    Relevant performance is            Time consuming
     coached under relevant             Training session can be
     conditions.                         disrupted.
    Issues of generalization are       Difficulty scheduling
                                         trainer.
     minimized.
                                        May disrupt on-going work.
    Easy to assess adequacy of
                                        Training may not be
     performance.
                                         structured to assure success.
             Performance Appraisal

• Delivery of content does not assure acquisition of
  skill.
• It is necessary to directly assess skill
  acquisition.
• Not all methods of performance appraisal are
  equal.
   Fundamentals of Performance Appraisal

• Direct measures of relevant performance in
  relevant setting is best measure.
    Minimizes inferences about ability to perform.
• All other methods of performance appraisal
  require some degree of inference from assessment
  to actual performance.
               Decision Tree for Staff Training

                               Type of Skill
  Knowing How                                            Knowing About
Delivery of Content                                 Delivery of Content
                                                              Group Lecture
       Role Play
                                                         Small Group Discussion
       Modeling
                                                           Assigned Readings
   On the job training
                                                          Self-Paced Instruction


                         Performance Appraisal
              Methods of Performance Appraisal
                                  Written tests
                                   Discussion
                                Role Play Demos
                                 On job Demos

                              Maintenance
             Methods for enhancing maintenance
                                  Train and hope
                                Periodic Retraining
                           Informal Obs and Discussion
                          On Job Assessment & Feedback

                                Summary
       Performance Appraisal: On the job
               Demonstrations
• Advantages                       • Disadvantages
    No inference required if          Can disrupt on-going work.
     staff person can perform on       Difficult to schedule.
     the job.                          Requires training coaches to
    Expectations clearly               discriminate effective
     communicated.                      performance from poor
                                        performance.
                                       Requires standardized
                                        checklist so any trained
                                        coach would obtain similar
                                        assessment results.
Performance Appraisal: Written Assessments

• Advantages                      • Disadvantages
    Easy to administer and           Poor means for assessing
     require little time and           skills related to knowing
     human resources.                  how.
    Best used to assess skills       Open ended more difficult
     related to knowing about.         to score than multiple
                                       choice.
       Performance Appraisal: Discussion

• Advantages                      • Disadvantages
    Best used to assess skills       Difficult to assure standard
     related to knowing about.         assessment protocol across
    Easy to administer.               assessors.
                                      Poor means for assessing
                                       skills related to knowing
                                       how.
                                      Difficult to predict actual
                                       performance under relevant
                                       conditions.
        Performance Appraisal: Role Play

• Advantages                        • Disadvantages
    Can be used to assess skills       Cannot assume that role
     related to either knowing           play demonstrations will
     about or knowing how.               generalize to work setting.
    Structured checklist allows        Done 1:1 so require more
     for consistent scoring by           time.
     trained coaches.                   Necessary to train coaches
                                         to discriminate effective
                                         performance.
                      Maintenance

• Acquisition of skill is initial goal of training but
  training is not complete without plan to assure
  maintenance.
    Even with effective training, performance will drift if
     there is not some plan to assure maintenance.
    Maintenance generally receives very little attention in
     staff training.
               Decision Tree for Staff Training

                               Type of Skill
  Knowing How                                            Knowing About
Delivery of Content                                 Delivery of Content
                                                              Group Lecture
       Role Play
                                                         Small Group Discussion
       Modeling
                                                           Assigned Readings
   On the job training
                                                          Self-Paced Instruction


                         Performance Appraisal
              Methods of Performance Appraisal
                                  Written tests
                                   Discussion
                                Role Play Demos
                                 On job Demos

                              Maintenance
             Methods for enhancing maintenance
                                  Train and hope
                                Periodic Retraining
                           Informal Obs and Discussion
                          On Job Assessment & Feedback

                                Summary
     Methods for Enhancing Maintenance:
               Train and hope
• Advantage           • Disadvantage
    Cheap and easy       Does not assure
                           maintenance
     Methods for Enhancing Maintenance:
             Periodic Retraining
• Advantage                       • Disadvantage
    Does not consume valuable        Trainings may be a year or
     human resources between           more apart
     trainings.                       Does not assure
    Assures that old and new          maintenance between
     staff all receive the same        training sessions
     content of training.             Difficulties with scheduling
     Methods for Enhancing Maintenance:
     Informal Observation and Discussion
• Advantage                         • Disadvantage
    Tends to occur in context of       Does not measure level of
     other job functions so              performance so there is no
     additional time is minimal.         information about
                                         maintenance effects.
                                        Neither the observation or
                                         feedback is systematic.
   Methods for Enhancing Maintenance:
  On the Job Demonstrations and Feedback
• Advantage                       • Disadvantage
    Formal structured                Difficult to schedule into
     observation and feedback          work routine.
     increases probability of
     detecting “drift” and
     correcting.
    Measures same behavior as
     performance appraisal from
     initial training.
    Proactive
                      Summary

• Staff training is a part of system to assure effective
  staff performance.
• Effective staff training must also include
  maintenance plan.
• Designing training is series of decisions
    All methods have advantages and disadvantages.
• Training has not occurred until trainees can
  perform the relevant skill in the relevant settings.
               Decision Tree for Staff Training

                               Type of Skill
  Knowing How                                            Knowing About
Delivery of Content                                 Delivery of Content
                                                              Group Lecture
       Role Play
                                                         Small Group Discussion
       Modeling
                                                           Assigned Readings
   On the job training
                                                          Self-Paced Instruction


                         Performance Appraisal
              Methods of Performance Appraisal
                                  Written tests
                                   Discussion
                                Role Play Demos
                                 On job Demos

                              Maintenance
             Methods for enhancing maintenance
                                  Train and hope
                                Periodic Retraining
                           Informal Obs and Discussion
                          On Job Assessment & Feedback

                                Summary