Selecting Different Types of Training for Different Types of Learning

types-of-trainingIf you’re a trainer or design instructional material, your job is to train people.

But what exactly are you training them? What kinds of things? If your initial answer is “stuff for work,” we can dive down a little deeper on that. The benefit of doing so is that once we realize that we train people on different kinds of “stuff for work” (or to speak a little more formally, we train people to help them with different types of learning), you can get a little more efficient and use different training techniques for each of those different types of learning that you want your employees to master.

That’s what we’re going to cover in this blog post. So if that sounds spot-on, continue reading. If you’re not quite sure how you feel about it, keep reading nonetheless, if you can spare the time. You just might find some tips to make the training programs at your workplace more effective and efficient.

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Book Review: Robert Mager’s “Developing Attitude Toward Learning”

We just read Robert Mager’s book Developing Attitude Toward Learning, one of six books in the classic “Mager Six Pack” series. In this article, we’ll give you a short book review. We have another, longer article if you’d like to study in more detail his ideas about creating enthusiastic trainees who want to put their new knowledge and skills into practice at work.

Before we begin, know that this is part of a series of articles looking at the books and ideas in the Mager Six Pack. So far, we’ve also got articles on the following:

Book Reviews

Overviews of Mager’s Techniques

With that out of way, let’s get to this book review.

Need any help with your training program at work? Check out the e-learning courses from Convergence Training, our family of learning management systems, or just contact us.


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How to Create Graphics for eLearning: Matching Graphics to Content

graphicsNot that long ago, we wrote a lengthy discussion of graphics and visuals for training materials. The article introduced 25 graphic techniques for making your training materials more effective, and it was based on the book Visual Language for Designers by Connie Malamed.

That post was so popular, and we found writing it to be so informative, that we thought we’d dig deep again and read another book on the issue of training graphics and visuals in training materials. This time, we checked out Graphics for Learning: Proven Guidelines for Planning, Designing, and Evaluating Visuals in Training Materials by Dr. Ruth Colvin Clark and Chopeta Lyons. It’s a create guide full of tips for how to create graphics for elearning (and all types of learning, really).

If Malamed’s book was considerable in length–and it was–then the Clark/Lyons book goes even further–a whopping 420 pages. So, we’ll cover different aspects of the book in different posts. In this post, we’re going to just look at a part of Clark & Lyon’s book that introduces six different types of graphics and when to use each in training materials.

Convergence Training is a training solutions provider–we make several learning management systems (LMSs) to meet the needs of companies of different sizes and in different industries, many libraries of e-learning courses for workforce training, custom training solutions for any industry, and mobile apps to bring training and workforce efficiency tools to your mobile device. Contact us if you have questions or want a demo.


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EHS Training Records & Documentation: Best Practices

ansi-zWe’re back with a look at the final section of ANSI Z490.1, the American National Standard for Criteria for Accepted Practices in Safety, Health, and Environmental Training.

In this article, we’re going to look at ANSI Z490.1′s recommendations for documenting your EHS training and keeping records.

Before we begin, just a quick reminder of the posts we’ve written about already in this series:

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What Is MSHA Part 46? Training Requirements for Surface Mines

pt46Some of you are seasoned hands well aware of the MSHA Part 46 training requirements. But maybe a refresher would help. Others may be new to the field and might find this article a helpful introduction.

So let’s dive in and take a closer look at MSHA Part 46.

We’ll start by learning about MSHA, Part 46, and various aspects of Part 46, including:

  • MSHA Part 46 Training Programs, including New Miner, Newly Hired Experienced Miner, New Task(s), Annual Refrsher, and Site-Specific Hazard Awareness
  • MSHA Part 46 Training Plans
  • Records of training for MSHA Part 46 Training
  • Compensation and Part 46 Training
  • Contractors and Part 46 Training

In future articles, we’ll show you how you could use mine safety e-learning courses for part of your Part 46 Training Plan, and how using a learning management system (LMS) can help you assign, deliver, track, report on, and create documentation of that training.

What Is MSHA?

MSHA is an acronym that stands for the Mine Safety and Health Administration. They’re the government agency tasked with safety and health issues at mines. One aspect of their responsibility is to make sure miners receive proper safety training.

What Is MSHA Part 46?

Part 46 is a part of CFR Title 30 Mineral Resources. It deals with mandatory training and training documentation requirements at certain mine sites (see below to learn which mines).

Convergence Training is a training provider that provides training solutions for the mining industry. Check out our MSHA Learning Management System (LMS) and our library of mine safety e-learning courses that are appropriate for Part 46 Compliance Training. Intrigued? If so, contact us for more information or a demo.


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Motivating Learners: Tips from Robert Mager’s Book “Developing Attitude Toward Learning”

We all want to motivate our learners. Motivating learners during the training so they’ll have a better chance to learn is important, obviously. And it’s also important to motivate learners AFTER the training so they’ll be more positively disposed toward the topic in general and more likely to apply the training at work.

But how exactly does a good trainer motivate learners? One good place to look for tips is in the book Developing Attitude Toward Learning (or SMATs ‘n’ SMUTs) by the noted human performance improvement/learning theorist Robert Mager.

A quick note about Mager’s title: Mager is a funny guy and his books often have humorous subtitles. In this book, he explains that a “SMAT” is a “subject matter approach tendency” and a “SMUT” is a “subject matter unapproach tendency.” These originated as joking phrases he used around the house with his family while writing the book. A SMAT–or subject matter approach tendency–is a learner’s tendency to have a continued interest in the subject matter after the training is over. A SMUT–or subject matter unapproach tendency–is a learner’s tendency to avoid the subject matter after the training. Mager designed the book to teach us ways to increase SMATs for our learners and decrease SMUTs for our learners–in other words, try to make them want to engage with our topic and try to avoid turning them off our topic.

In this article, we’ll pass on some of the tips from Mager’s book. Of course, we recommend you buy the book and read it yourself. In fact, we recommend that you buy and read the entire “Mager Six Pack,” which we’re currently in the process of reading and writing about ourselves. Currently, here are the articles we’ve got about the Mager Six Pack:

Book Reviews:

Explanations of Techniques Described in Mager’s Books: 

With that out of way, let’s see what Mager has to teach us in this book (Developing Attitude Toward Learning).

Need any help with your training program at work? Check out the e-learning courses from Convergence Training, our family of learning management systems, or just contact us.


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Introducing New LMS “Landing Pages”

Those of you looking to add a little more of your company’s style and personality to your Convergence LMS can now take advantage of our new customizable Landing Pages to do just that.

Where before your LMS users were greeted with a simple and plain login form, you’re now able to present them with virtually any information you’d like when they sit down to take their assigned training.

Configure your custom dashboard to display blog posts, announcements, news, or other data from an RSS feed. Upload a static image, like your company logo, or display an entire webpage by entering a simple url.


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First Look: Elective-Based Training

We’re excited to give you a preview of an eagerly anticipated new feature of the Convergence LMS – Electives.

With the option of elective-based training, not only will you be able to assign training to individual employees and groups, but your employees will also be able to self-register and complete training proactively, putting themselves in a better position to be promoted or to be successful when training up ahead of starting a new job.

Elective-based training appeals to employees’ desire to be in charge of and direct their own training. Turn your training library into a reference library and allow learners to enroll in supplemental courses so they can sharpen their skills and increase their knowledge as they see fit. (more…)

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Convergence LMS Gets a New Look

We’ve recently added some more firepower to our programming team, and as a result we’ve been able to push out a number of long-awaited enhancements that improve the look and feel of the Convergence LMS.

Modernized UI

While we made quite a few minor updates to make for a smoother user experience, the most visible changes involve updated icons, flattened layout, and improved fluidity of the overall design.


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Safety and Other Work Place Training Suggestions for March Madness

bballMarch Madness. It’s all you hear about these days, it seems.

Given that excitement in the spring air, Convergence Training is once again jumping into an otherwise-unfilled chasm to fulfill a desperate societal need: safety and other workplace training suggestions for March Madness.

That’s right, it’s another highly relevant, desperately needed set of suggestions from the provider of learning management systems (LMSs) and e-learning training materials that brought you these “just-in-time” classics from the vault:

Let’s get on with it, shall we? Let’s tip the ball so we can run the floor and slam the dunk, no? (Hope we got the lingo right–it seems quite specialized).

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