MID-ATLANTIC PROFESSIONAL DEVELOPMENT CENTER: LENGTHENING THE HALF-LIFE OF LEARNING

6 Pages   |   1,482 Words
Table of Contents
 
Case Study. 3
Transfer of Learning. 4
Ideas before the program commences. 4
Ideas during the program.. 4
Ideas after the program.. 5
References. 6
 

Case Study

Mid-Atlantic Professional Development Center (MAPCD) and Creative Customized Technologies (CCT) were involved in a deal of educational programs where MAPCD would provide executive education (EE) to the managers of CCT. The program would span around three years and would generate respectable revenues for MAPCD. A concern for the human resources officer of CCT was that the managers go about their normal routine even after returning from educational training, and they do not transmit any of the learning into the work environment. The transfer of learning to the work place was what CCT looked for and was expecting MAPCD to provide.

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MAPCD was run by six people who had extensive experience of executive education (EE), and decided to move into the market under their separate banner. The six individuals had administrators as well as instructors of EE at well reputed schools. After a shaky start, the company established itself to a respectable level in the industry. Their reputation of close linkage with their clients, as well as a well balanced curriculum comprising of dynamic instruction method and style made them renowned in the business. They offered a wide range of course content and were well experienced in teaching about almost every professional industry. MAPCD also followed a strict code when functioning with a fresh buyer. It basically followed the procedure where the course content was made with close co ordination with the client and was only taught when approved.
CCT was a technology company which had government clients such as home land security or national intelligence. They had grown into a large company, and the organization decided that it was time to teach executive education to their tech savvy managers. CCT set out to look for programs that would develop future leaders, and MAPCD was the company that provided everything they looked for. CCT was not looking for monetary returns on their investment, but value added by the managers when they return from training. CCT knew about the problems most of the EE programs had, and transferred those concerns to MAPCD. MAPCD’s director thought that it would be best that new and creative ideas were formulated by the instruction team. They would look for a needs assessment, and portray the ideas to CCT about the possibility of managers retaining executive education, and implementing it in their work place. The director himself would try to formulate some ideas to ease the concerns of CCT about executive education.

Transfer of Learning

Ideas before the program commences

Transfer of learning is the use of skills and knowledge gained during the EE, and transferring them to the workplace. The major goal of EE is to promote the transfer, and the major goal is not achieved when transfer does not occur (Subedi, 2004). The root problem with EE is the same for CCT that there was no transfer of training or transfer of learning.
There are many ways to help ease the transfer, and the most influential one is to discover the variables that facilitate the transfer which might be different for every organization. Before the program commences, there is a need to lay a careful plan as to how the EE will be approached for the organization and its employees. There are several models and approaches that can be helpful in facilitating the transfer. Some of these perspectives are cognitive, behavioral and sociological. These three perspectives must be followed if there is to be any transfer, because these three perspectives are followed by every organization even though their characteristics vary significantly for each case (Sense, 2011).
Careful needs assessment should be done by MAPCD in relation to the training taking in mind the culture and environment of CCT. The needs assessment can be followed by the design of study which has to be carefully laid and exclusive for CCT. The design has to bear in mind the three perspectives listed above as well as other models and approaches that are feasible for CCT. Every lecture and the delivery of EE has to be preplanned and should be done in such a way that is similar to the workplace environment of CCT so that the managers in training can relate to everything being taught to their workplace.

Ideas during the program

Knowledge and skills are linked to each other and are tied together in relation to the setting in which they are taught (Stevenson, 2002). The goal of EE is to ensure that the people in training have new knowledge that can be utilized in new situations arising in their workplace. MAPCD has to ensure that the setting in which EE is being practiced is comfortable for the CCT managers.
There is concrete evidence that knowledge alone does not translate into transfer. There is another factor which is personal behavior that along with knowledge leads to effective transition of EE into the workplace. That factor is motivation, and proper motivation can lead to desirable results, because it encourages the use of learning into a realistic environment, which in this case is the work place (Gegenfurtner, 2011). It is compulsory for instructors at MAPCD to have a clear idea of what the knowledge base of CCT employees consists of, and teach them accordingly. Also, individual analysis of every manager who is to train has to be conducted so that assistance can be given to everyone according to their own needs. Delivery of instruction should consist of real time situations, and trainees should be involved in the training process in a very high capacity. That way they can learn to think about what they are taught at their work places and transmit the learning. High technology shall be used to make the trainees comfortable in their use, because these new technologies will play a major role in molding the future of companies. Technology in this case does not mean high-tech material, but it is the way that training has evolved.

Ideas after the program

The results of EE are instrumental in growth of managers to higher positions in the organizational hierarchy, because EE helps share and embeds vision of the company in the minds of the trainees (Novicevic, Heames, Paolillo, & Buckley, 2009). EE is just not about the lessons taught during the period of training, but it also signifies the transfer of learning to the working environment. To facilitate the transfer after the program, there are many ways to monitor the progress of every trainee in the program. There are post training exercises and activities that help individuals to portray what they have learned in the work place context.
CCT should help MAPCD in monitoring the performance of trainee managers’ right after the training. MAPCD can hand out projects and assignments to individuals pertaining to their work so that they can produce the results that are expected of them, after they have completed their training. CCT can carry out tests and assessments after the program has been completed to gauge the improvement in the trainees that they sent to MAPCD. These sorts of activities will help the transfer of learning exactly as the way it helps a student when he has to produce a project based on what he has learned in class. EE is a carefully planned program that does not just train professionals, but also takes them to the next level in the corporate hierarchy. It is true that EE is faced with many problems, but with some effort and initiative shown by the training organization and the client, they can get rid of their entire ailments. It is important that both CCT and MAPCD work hand in hand to ensure effective and efficient training and get rid of the lack of transfer of training into the work place problem. It is also up to the trainees to show initiative and motivate themselves in learning the ways of success through corporate education if they want to step up the corporate ladder.

References

Gegenfurtner, A. (2011). Motivation and transfer in professional training: A meta-analysis of the moderating effects of knowledge type, instruction and assessment conditions. Educational Reserach Review (no. 6), pp. 153-168.
Novicevic, M. M., Heames, J. T., Paolillo, J. G., & Buckley, M. R. (2009). Executive development: History lessons learned from Barnard. The Leadership Quarterly (no. 20), pp. 155-161.
Sense, A. J. (2011). The project workplace for organizational learning development. International Journal of Project Management (no. 29), pp. 986-993.
Stevenson, J. (2002). Concepts of workplace knowledge. International Journal of Educational Research (no. 37), pp. 1-15.
Subedi, B. S. (2004). Emerging Trends of Research on Transfer of Learning. International Education Journal , vol. 5 (no. 4), pp. 591-599.

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