General Tips for Trainers

By Ashraf Al Shafaki

  • Breaks: Provide many short breaks during a lecture. Provide a break when switching to a new topic or adding a new 'brick' of information built over the previous ones. This helps the mind process and digest the previous information well and clear the way for new information to enter the mind.
  • Time: The same amount of course content takes more time to teach in the morning than in the afternoon. If you have been delivering some course in the morning and will later be delivering it in the afternoon, make sure you have more content for each lecture during that afternoon course because you will find that you still have more time left after finishing the same amount of content you had given in a morning lecture.
  • Quality: It is not enough that you provide students with excellent training, it is also important that you make them aware that they are receiving excellent training otherwise, no matter how good the training was, they might not be satisfied. In order to make them aware of how good the training is, you have to explicitly mention to them your professional background and why the training they are getting is of high quality.
  • Questions: It is not a good practice to tray to evade the question a student asks when you do not know the answer to it or are not sure of its answer. When a student asks you a question, you can respond in one of three ways: a) Give the answer to the questoin if you know it. b) Tell the student that you will check for the answer and provide it next time c) Tell the student that you do not know the answer to this question (and will not check it). Such responses build student trust in the trainer. An evasive response that tries to change the subject, give an unsure answer or elude answering all together by counteracting the question and asking the student to "answer that question as an assignment" will erode student trust in the trainer later on.
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