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Setting Training Objectives

Training & Development / Setting Training Objectives

Training objectives state what will be accomplished as a result of the training and are defined in light of the needs identified. They arise out of gaps and deficiencies identified in the process of needs assessment. Training objectives may indicate that trainees will display an understanding of certain concepts, demonstrate a given skill or show a change in attitude. Content, method of instruction, reading material, lab exercises and forms of evaluation strategies are all derived from identifying the training objectives. Without measurable training objectives, learning cannot be successfully planned or evaluated.

Clear training objectives provide a sound basis for:

  • Organizing the trainer’s work;
  • Informing trainees of the learning expected;
  • Selecting the training materials and methods;
  • Delivering an effective training program, and;
  • Evaluating the success of the training course.

Well-defined training objectives will keep all involved on the right track throughout the training. They provide an important link between the needs assessment and the design and preparation of the training materials. The trainer can assess if the objectives were met, indicating whether the training was successful in meeting the needs of the trainees. The training objectives therefore provide the basis of evaluation.

Objectives for training may involve

  • Improving Skills;
  • Increasing Knowledge, and;
  • Changing Attitude.

In converting needs into objectives, three areas of performance may be identified: skills, knowledge and attitude.

Skills-related objectives indicate what the trainee can do, demonstrate or perform as result of the training.

Knowledge-related objectives refer to the participants’ ability to identify, define or describe given concepts as a result of the training.

Attitude-related objectives relate to predispositions towards approaches, ideas, events persons or objects, which are less easy to measure although it may be useful to make explicit the desired attitudinal change.