Fried Training Talk- Overcoming Programming

Published: Thursday, September 26, 2019
Updated: Thursday, September 26, 2019

I have always loved learning new things (particularly about Instructional Design), and I like to think I am receptive to new ideas.

Like most people, when I have something programmed into me from a young age it is hard to let that go. Mom says you have to finish everything on your plate, it comes from a place of caring and wanting you to have enough nourishment, but studies have shown this is bad for weight and other health issues, and we are better just eating until we are full. Many of us who were programed by mom to finish are plates not just are going to clean our plates, but are going to tell our kids they need to as well, even though we know based on research this is wrong.

There are elements like this in Instructional design that come up over and over again. The traditional classroom lecture setup has been shown to not be as effective for adult learners. Learning styles has been debunked as a meaningful design element. Lecture without interaction and practice has limited value. So I wonder what we as designers of training can do to get past our programming?


Any thoughts or examples you wonderful folks out there would like to share?

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I try to incorporate that into classes I do design for and / or teach- don't lecture, but talk WITH the students. Bring them into the material with games, problems, or even just conversation. Engagement is the key to retention, so try to get as many people involved as often as you can; and if you can get them to think critically about the information (rather than just passively listen to it) even better.
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While a paramedic, one of the best supplemental classes I took or taught covered medical life support (specialized). What made it special was the way it was taught- very brief lectures about a focused topic (ten minutes or so) and then the class was engaged in a group problem solving exercise that narrowed the focus of the topic down. Another brief lecture (10 min. or so) on that part, then repeat. It kept everyone engaged as the class only moved forward as the problems got solved (or reduced
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