Interactive Adult Training Techniques

by Belinda Tucker

Interactive training techniques can be used to fully engage adult students.This type of training is considered to be highly effective, because adults are afforded the opportunity to learn through active participation. Unlike more traditional, classroom learning environments, where an instructor tells students what they need to know, interactive training challenges adult students to participate directly in their own learning experience. This type of experiential training is learner-centered.

Case Study Techniques

A time-tested method for training students to solve real problems faced by organizations is to present them with the details of those challenges in the form of an exercise and then consult with them for solutions. This type of training technique presents the trainee with questions to answer and objectives to meet. Given authentic problems to solve, with no particular right or wrong answers, students are encouraged to use their own life experiences to come up with viable answers. This method gives mature students an opportunity to contemplate the many variables and factors that managers are forced to deal with daily when making decisions.

Role Playing

Role-playing exercises demand that the student act out a particular situation to achieve a predetermined objective. Role playing is particularly effective training for salespeople, public relations associates and customer service representatives. It is also common to rehearse delicate negotiations and other important meetings, where people skills are key for success. Some role-play scenarios are structured with specific challenges and roles for each participant to play. More true to real life, other role-play exercises are spontaneous, allowing each person involved to act as they desire. To prepare for situations where professionals must be capable of thinking on their feet, the spontaneous role play is particularly helpful.

Behavior Modeling

Behavior modeling is similar to role play, with one main exception. In behavior modeling, the student is shown how they are expected to behave in a structured scenario, prior to the student's first practice run. Either an expert model or a videotaped demonstration is used for teaching purposes. Feedback is provided after the student performs. Oftentimes, the student is also videotaped for training purposes.

Business Games

Business games that mirror an entire company's operations can be used to teach students about decision making, and the impact a single decision can make on the entire organization. Playing business games teaches students about critical organizational rules and the relationships necessary to meet and exceed performance expectations.Types of games played include: board games, audio games, cash games, email games, computer shell games and matrix games, to name a few.

About the Author

Belinda Tucker has been a professional writer since 1983. She has published articles in "Surviving Career Transitions," Healthy by Choice," Eleanor's Eyes" and "Congestive Heart Failure." Tucker holds a Bachelor of Science in industrial management from Georgia Institute of Technology.

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