Monday, September 20, 2010

The Right Stuff: Jane on Objectives

I’m on a bit of a Jane Bozarth kick of late.  Really.  Just scroll down a bit in my blog and you’ll see it’s true.

So no surprise when I was doing some reading tonight on developing learning objectives that I stumbled on more Jane wisdom:

“So: Before developing the instruction don’t just write objectives. Write the right objectives. What is this person really supposed to do back on the job? What does “understand” mean, and what evidence will show you that understanding has occurred? Devotees of Bloom’s taxonomy will argue that learner performance like “listing” and “describing” can constitute what he called ”enabling” objectives. That may valid, but they should not be the only objectives: Employees are rarely asked to “list” or “describe” anything, so it’s critical to move on to behaviors closer to desired performance, not just knowledge. And: Enabling objectives are easy to write, and to develop bullet points for, and to develop training around, and to write a quiz to assess. If you feel the training really must address these, fine, but be sure to push past them on to things that more closely resemble real performance.”

-- Jane Bozarth

Read Jane’s full article here:


Jane Bozarth said...

The kick is mutual. Thanks! jb

Dick Carlson said...

I wrote a post when Captain Sully landed that plane in the Hudson wondering if you'd have like a pilot who could have "listed" the standard emergency procedures or actually "created" the required emergency procedures as the plane was going down.

In a nutshell, that moment describes the difference between Level 1 and Level 5.

And I've been on a Cammy/Jane kick for some time.

Cammy Bean said...

Lots of kicking going around!

bschlenker said...

I'm sensing a blog post titled the Cammyness of Dick and Jane. Or something like that :)
In all seriousness, I love that you all are exposing this often ignored truth within corporate training. Unfortunately, applying the theories of academics is what brought us down this scary path. There is no "performance" in school other than lists, recitation, matching, selection, etc. So that's all there is to measure when in school. In the corporate world nobody cares how smart you are if you can't get the job done.
PS - I'm a huge fan of all 3 of you!