Step 3: Decide what must be tackled formally

The new learning architect

Over the past year we have been publishing extracts from The New Learning Architect. We continue with the fourth part of chapter 11:

You can now start to shape your solution, starting with those needs that are best addressed, at least in part, through formal learning interventions.

A formal solution is likely to be your most appropriate option when:

  • the organisation can only achieve its objectives if the employees in question possess the relevant knowledge and skills;
  • the organisation needs to be able to demonstrate compliance to an external regulator;
  • a high degree of proficiency is absolutely vital to avoid the chance of an expensive error, damage to the organisation’s reputation, or risk to health and safety;
  • the employees in question are complete novices and are likely to depend on a structured approach to their initial training;
  • the attainment of a formal certification or qualification can make a big difference to the career prospects of the employees in question.

Top-down interventions, such as classroom courses, self-study e-learning, outdoor learning, collaborative distance learning, computer games and simulations, and blended learning, are likely to be the preferred choice in most situations. Bottom-up approaches, such as professional and postgraduate qualifications and formal adult education, are more likely to be used for medium-to-long term employee development.

Coming next: Step 4: Decide what can be addressed using non-formal approaches

Return to Chapter 1 Chapter 2 Chapter 3 Chapter 4 Chapter 5 Chapter 6 Chapter 7 Chapter 8 Chapter 9 Chapter 10

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About Clive Shepherd

Clive Shepherd has written 243 post in this blog.

Clive is a consultant specialising in the application of technology to learning and business communications. He was previously Director of Training and Creative Services for a multinational corporation and co-founder of a major multimedia development company. For four years he was chair of the eLearning Network.

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