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Training Development PDF Print E-mail

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The CAI Approach to training development is specifically designed to use the principles of adult learning in all instruction and classroom interaction. All CAI conducted training utilized the principles pioneered by Malcolm Knowles (1984) who is recognized as the ‘father’ of adult learning. For Instructor Led training the CAI presentation is tailored to the groups present for each class. Effective learning requires that participants are challenged but not overwhelmed and that they have a chance to practice and apply new learning in a safe and supportive environment.Some will be at a novice to intermediate level of learning, while others will have experience as at intermediate to mastery levels in some areas. Instructors explore the level of expertise of the participants through class discussions and modify material as necessary.

To ensure courseware is designed and developed to the highest standards, Team CAI functions as an Instruction Development Team (IDT). For any customer project, the IDT’s first product will be an overall Training Management Plan (TMP) using the Instructional Systems Design (ISD) methodology of Analyze, Design, Develop, Implement, and Evaluate (ADDIE). This process ensures all training materials are specifically relevant to the target audience and their content and method of presentation meet expected performance outcomes based on clearly identified, measurable performance-based objectives. By applying proven ADDIE based design techniques, the CAI’s IDT works within an established framework to ensure instructional courseware achieves the desired performance outcomes aligned with customer goals and objectives. This also provides a disciplined, repeatable process to rapidly adapt to required changes based on multiple inputs. This ensure training is always timely, relevant, and current.

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The CAI Approach is specifically designed to use the principles of adult learning in all instruction and classroom interaction.

Malcolm Knowles (1984) described adult learners as follows:

Adults are autonomous and self-directed. Adult learners must be active participants in learning. Participant’s perspectives and interests are leveraged to make the learning experience more relevant. The instructor guides the participants to develop their own knowledge rather than supplying them with facts.

Adults come to a class with an abundance of life experiences and knowledge. Participants are encouraged to draw on their experience and knowledge that is relevant to the class.

Adults are goal-oriented. The goals, course objectives, and participant requirements need to be clearly defined

Adults are relevancy-oriented. Adult learners need to understand how the training they are receiving is applicable to their work. This requires taking time at the beginning of class to introduce trainees to each other and to discuss goals and expectations.

Adults are practical. The instructor must ensure that participants understand how the lesson will be useful for them on the job.

Adults need to be shown respect. The instructor acknowledges the expertise of the participants and encourages them to voice their own opinions freely in an open environment.

CAI training emphasizes the adult learning principles stated above through use of the following methods:

Establishing an open atmosphere where relevant personal contributions are welcome.

Encouraging personal examples that reinforce the training.

Stating clear goals and expectations for every module and included classes.

Motivating participants for each module and included classes with a relevant story (video clip, audio message, or verbal scenario) that illustrates the theme for that class.

Learners will participate in activities to develop self-understanding and to explore the range of behaviors in others. They will apply their new knowledge in real-world scenarios to expand their understanding, develop appropriate skills, and enhance retention.

Learners will take an active part in small group activities and dialogues to increase the depth of understanding and develop then apply skills learned; passive listening to “death by PowerPoint” slides will be avoided.

Learners will volunteer to participate in role playing activities to practice new skills.

Instructors will use a blended learning approach characterized by Case-based Teaching and augmented with appropriate technology enablers and subject Matter Experts to ensure the students are engaged; have high retention; and can apply learning using case-based reasoning in their daily work.

To be effective, training should have a 1:15 or less teacher to student ratio; ideally 1:10. For that reason, all CAI conducted classes provide sufficient instructors to meet to better this ratio. Highly interactive programs with significant small group exercises have two instructors and an assistant.

Small group instruction is highly productive, but relatively ineffective when those groups receive limited instructor interaction. For that reason, when breakout groups are used, the CAI will strive for at least 1 instructor per every two breakout groups.

Taking time to understand the goals and expectations of participants and having participants share these with the class is a key element of our approach, including the following.

CAI conducted training is tailored to the groups present for each class. Effective learning requires that participants are challenged but not overwhelmed and that they have a chance to practice and apply new learning in a safe and supportive environment. It is assumed that those in Leadership I will be at a novice to intermediate level of learning, while those in Leadership II will have experience as leaders. Instructors will explore the level of expertise of the participants through class discussions and modify material, if necessary. As such, time provided for topics covered within the specific class are provided only as representative guidelines demonstrating how the various subjects will be taught with in a one-half day timeframe. The actual execution will be driven by student inter-action so as to best achieve learning goals and objectives.


Knowles, M. (1984). The Adult Learner: A Neglected Species (3rd Ed.). Houston, TX: Gulf Publishing.