Evaluation is important for trainers too. Students cannot learn well if trainers are not doing an effective job. The following are some guidelines for the kinds of information trainers can obtain to judge their effectiveness in training:
• Were the learning objectives clearly specified and defined?
• Did all the trainees know what the objectives were and understand them?
• Were the contents of the lessons and the teaching methods and aids related to the learning objectives?
• Were the teaching aids properly prepared for the lessons?
• Was there a process to regularly check to see how trainees were progressing?
• Did the introduction to each lesson link it clearly with the previous lesson?
• Were appropriate examples used to clarify important points?
• Was there enough time for questions?
• Was the material presented clearly?
• Was there a good summary at the conclusion of the lesson?
There are several ways you can evaluate whether you are doing a good job as a trainer:
One of the best ways for trainers to learn how to become more effective at helping people learn is to regularly evaluate their own performance. There are several ways you can find out how well you are doing as a trainer.
1. Evaluate yourself
Make a checklist of the important things you should do as a trainer and use this checklist regularly. Here are some questions you could ask yourself. Do I:
• prepare my lessons well?
• relate the information to what trainees already know?
• ask questions and lead discussions to encourage trainees to participate?
• speak and write clearly?
• illustrate ideas with examples?
• give time for trainees to practise, study and review?
• reinforce and repeat important points?
• help trainees relate what they are learning to their work?
• ask trainees for suggestions on how to improve the course?
2. Ask other trainers to evaluate your work
Ask another trainer to observe one or more of your sessions and afterwards, you can together discuss the ways the class was good, and the ways in which it could be improved. If you are training in a group, you can evaluate each other using a checklist that you develop.
3. Ask the trainees to evaluate your work
It can be very valuable to find out how trainees feel about the training, what difficulties they are having and what things are going well. At the end of each session, or at the end of the day, ask:
• What did they like about the sessions?
• What did they learn?
• What suggestions do they have to make it better?
Evaluations of the trainers should be done periodically, such as at the end of each day or week, and a complete evaluation should be performed at the end of a course. These evaluations can be done in a short session by the training staff, together with a few members of the training group.
Staff meetings are also a good place to periodically discuss the progress of a training project. You might also discuss progress in field meetings with small groups of THPs and their supervisors. Both methods have been used very successfully by THP training projects.