Choosing an appropriate delivery method
Face-to-face delivery has changed in the last few years. We are now seeing a level of comfort with virtual delivery options such as Zoom, MS Teams and so on. As such, delivery methods have also developed to suit the contemporary teaching environment. Consider the following options:
- Lecture – this method is great for short ‘bursts’ of knowledge. Research suggests that this method should be limited to approximately 20 minutes at a time to maintain engagement and the learner’s level of retention
- Discussion – discussions are great for inclusivity. They also produce a variety of ideas, facts, opinions and feelings on a subject directly from your learners. This is appropriate in any contexts and is encouraged as a method for beginning a training session.
- Role-Play – the agile learning approach of ‘learn-then-do’ has a lot of positive results for hands-on skills and communication skills. A role play is a method for testing and trying new skills and should be used after a period of discussion or demonstration.
- Practice – practice methods suit the realm of hands-on skills only when it is safe to do so. Allowing practice (and the possibility of failure) improves learner retention and engagement.
- Demonstration of skills – it is often difficult to verbalise exactly ‘how’ to do something. A skills demonstration is therefore a highly advantageous method for kinaesthetic situations such as skills involving detailed physical movement, processes that have a number of complex steps, and so on.
- Video/Electronic presentation – using training aids as a method of delivery should be done so sparingly. Video and audio clips are a substitute for your own demonstrations and lectures – but may offer a level of credibility to your key points. Refrain from using materials that are not up-to-date, or stray away from the key content.
- Simulation – see ‘Role-Play’.