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Ten Key Components for Success in Training Design


Each member of the training development team brings valuable knowledge and experience to our group. In order to ensure that all departments benefit from training, we must pool our knowledge in designing an exemplary training program beneficial to all employees. New ideas develop from collaboration; we can all learn from each other.

Starting with the end in mind/ Backward design

Before we design a training program, we must identify the desired outcomes of our training. What is it that we expect workers to take away from these sessions? By starting with the end in mind, we will be able to formulate goal-based training strategies that will increase the likelihood for success.

Awareness of learning styles

Everyone has a style or styles of learning that he or she is most comfortable with. Some learn better as part of a team, while some learn best when working individually. Some prefer hands-on practical experience, while others learn better when presented with concepts and theories. We must have continued awareness of the various learning styles of our staff when designing training.

Use of a variety of learning strategies

As we are mindful of the variety of learning styles that individuals are comfortable with, it is only logical that we attempt to cater to as many styles as is possible in the context of our training sessions. By providing a variety of learning strategies such as small group activities, hands-on activities, and material for individual review, we are supporting the various ways in which our employees learn best.

Awareness of audience/ Relevance

Adult learners are most receptive to learning when they are confident that the material presented is directly applicable to their personal life situation. Specific, relevant examples need to be incorporated in the training sessions and each session should be tailored to the individual work-interests of the department(s) attending.

Facilitation of learning v. pure instruction

The individual guiding the training session needs to be a facilitator of learning rather than a didactic instructor. Individuals will quickly lose interest in a lecture-based format of training. A facilitator guides individuals through their own learning process.

Creation of authentic learning

We want our employees to truly learn what we are presenting in training and to be able to apply knowledge gained in training to new problems that arise later. Training sessions that rely on memorization of information or do not show applicability to different work scenarios are destined to fail.

Active participation

Promoting active participation in training workshops helps to keep attendees focused and remain interested in the information presented. When participants are given the opportunity to ask questions, share experiences and ideas and provide solutions to problems, they become part of the training process rather than passive listeners.

Use of assessment tools

Assessment is highly valuable throughout the training process. Assessment prior to training can help us understand the state of individuals’ information skills and can help us tailor our training sessions to suit the needs of those attending. Assessment after training can help us evaluate the training we provided – did we succeed in our goals? What do we need to improve upon?


We must continually evaluate our training throughout the design process. Without continual evaluation, we cannot expect that out intended user outcomes will be supported. If we wait until the end of our design process to evaluate what we have created, we may become frustrated and lose valuable time in reworking what we thought was complete. By evaluating throughout the design process, we will save time and minimize stress.