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Methodology

The ADDIE standard development model, with an emphasis on audience-centered, objective-focused learning, achieves practical, targeted results. By honing in on the key questions below, I create customized curricula that accomplish two main goals: employee performance improvement and streamlined learning processes that maximize resources. Follow-on considerations, such as course maintenance and translation considerations, are at the bottom.Click on each phase to skip to that section.

Analyze Design Develop Implement Evaluate

 Project Management

  • What constraints are there on time, budget and subject expert availability?
  • Who has the authority to approve content and project management issues?
  • Who has the final say regarding schedule, and when release must be delayed to accommodate critical but in-progress processes?
  • Which permissions are required to access the required environments (internal SharePoints or software programs)? Are there areas that SMEs will have to access for you? Are dummy accounts required for screen capture purposes?
  • Do the reviewers have access to all required folders and websites?

Analyze

  • What should employees be able to accomplish upon completing the training?
  • Is the need in performance improvement due to issues beyond the scope of training, e.g., motivational or equipment problems?
  • Who is the audience, which skills do they already possess, and how varied is their experience?
  • What are the quantifiable measurements of success?
  • What are the project risks, and what are potential solutions?
  • How are time, funding, and quality ranked from most to least important?
  • Who is ultimately responsible for the scope determination and final approval of the course?

Design and Develop

  • Is the training subjective, complex, and interpersonal (instructor-led or e scenario-based training is best), or objective and technical (web-based training is generally adequate)?
  • How does the size of the training audience impact the group exercises or role playing within the course?
  • Which format or combinations of formats would best suit the material (instructor-led, web-based, webcasts, forums, role playing, or blended learning)?
  • What is the training environment and which technologies are available?
  • Which skills are required for course development (graphics, audio, video, programmers)?
  • Is the course best approached through process stream, job role, task completion, or some other breakdown?
  • Do the course(s) consist of modules that not everyone is required to take? How will information be organized to avoid redundancy or absent content for users with different course requirements?
  • What are the accessibility and variable device requirements (phones, tablets, PCs)?

Implement

  • How will translation turnaround time impact the release schedule?
  • What information about the course or tool environment must trainers know ahead of time in order to properly prepare for course delivery? What else should be in the Train the Trainer sessions?
  • How should content updates that occur throughout the training implementation period be communicated to trainers and their audience?

Evaluate

  • How did the trainer feel about the quality of the instructor notes and Train the Trainer sessions? How prepared did they feel?
  • How did students feel about the course content quality and depth, relevance to their work, ease of use, and overall training environment?
  • How well did students do on the assessment? Did several miss the same questions (indicating an issue with the course or question itself)?
  • How has the training improved job performance, both objectively (metrics) and subjectively (feedback)?
  • How has customer satisfaction increased as a result of the training?
  • Have costs been reduced as a result of the training?

Maintain

  • Who is responsible for determining the update frequency?
  • Who owns the content and approves updates?
  • Who is the contact for update information?
  • Who is the contact for updates to the administrative content for the course?
  • What is the lifecycle of the course? Is there a sunset date?

Translate

There are several considerations when translating courses for audiences in several countries. These extend beyond the usual tips, such as avoiding jargon and idioms.

  • Use only the first definition of a word when possible. For example, use "After you have completed X," rather than "Once you have completed X." Once will be translated as "one time."
  • Do not use contractions or complicated sentence structure.
  • Do not use graphics or images with embedded text. Separate the text so that it is editable.
  • Do not use graphics that convey an idea only understood in certain countries. For example, flipping a coin symbolizes random decision-making in the United States, but Koreans might not be familiar with that metaphor. Also don't use images that overemphasize the American perspective, such as dollars to represent all currency.
  • If creating complex e-learning layouts with something like Captivate, leave enough space to translate into languages (such as Japanese or Russian) that take up much more space than English.
  • Know which phrases are standard in all languages (such as FY for Fiscal Year), and whether acronyms that refer to English terms are the same in different languages. This varies by company and department.
  • Have trainers in the local country review the translated materials, particularly to check for special or company-specific terms that external localization teams would not know.
  • Make sure all of the technical elements still work (animations, mouseovers) and text is still well-placed in the translated versions.
  • Though this is always important, do not use more words than necessary, as this rapidly increases translation costs.
  • Do not use expressions or symbols (such as a thumbs up) that are offensive in other countries.