Many factors and conditions coming up in the recent years are leading people involved in training provision, to start looking for more flexible and cost-effective training methods which do not involve the constant presence of the tutoe.
Some of these factors are cited below:
- the growing capabilities and the decreasing cost of communications
- the demands for flexibility and lifelong training of employees
- the evolution towards the information society.
Open and distance learning (ODL), using the latest information and communications technologies (ICT), is such an innovate training tool, both on a technical and a methodological level.
In the last years, many companies and training providers are already supplying distance learning facilities on an experimental basis. Little scientific research had been carried out until now to examine the impact of these changes on the role and the tasks of the training supplier.
The project has tried to address these topics and to establish general purpose curricula for distance training, addressing the following arguments:
- the new role of the trainer involved in ODL
- the profile of the distance trainer
- the specific demands for this function
- training needs for the distance trainer.
Based on an extensive survey performed in Spain upon distance training organisation, and reproduced on a smaller scale in Greece, the different activities of the distance trainer were listed. Thee inventory descibes both general pedagocical actions and trainers activities specific to a distance training setup.
The activities were converted into qualifications, and each activity was associated to abilities and knowledge.
Finally, the abilities and the knowledge were itemised and translated into a training curriculum.
Profile of the distant trainer
The activities that may be performed in a distance training organisation have been listed.
To each activity in the list, the required abilities and necessary knowledge have been associated.
The information is categorised in three sections:
I. training design
II. training provision
III. training evaluation
A fouth section (IV) gives an overview of all organisational aspects relevant to the ODL system.