InSync Training

Lesson Learned: Virtual Facilitation is DIFFERENT Than Traditional Facilitation

Posted by Jennifer Hofmann on Jan 16, 2020 12:26:49 PM
Lessons Learned about Virtual Classroom Facilitation

In 2020, we’ll be sharing the lessons we’ve learned about the virtual classroom over the last twenty years, and we’ll link back to our more detailed content around these topics, in case you want to learn more! 

When organizations started to adopt the virtual classroom in the 1990s, the focus was on the technology-driven benefits it could provide - Reduction in travel cost, less disruption to learner schedules, and the ability to share subject matter expertise in a much more immediate and relevant way.

We could train everyone, when they needed it, and save money at the same time.

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Topics: Virtual Classroom, Virtual Classroom - Facilitation, Learner Engagement, Lessons Learned Series

Hindsight is 2020 - 20 Years of Driving Digital Engagement in the Virtual Classroom

Posted by Jennifer Hofmann on Jan 6, 2020 11:51:00 PM
InSync Training 20 Year Anniversary Logo

On January 3, 2000, I created a company named InSync Training. To answer a commonly asked question, the name WASN’T a play on the name of a popular boy band of the time - back then, virtual classrooms were called ‘synchronous classrooms,’ so I felt the name would be compelling. 

At that time, the U.S. economy was coming out of the Dotcom era, and organizations were investing heavily in web-based technologies in all aspects of their operations (including learning and development) without any real understanding of what all this new tech would do for them. It was just assumed that the virtual classroom was the right choice for all modern training. I entered the marketplace with the vision of providing foundational, proven practices for training professionals to use and maximize virtual live instructional technologies in delivering training programs.

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Topics: Virtual Classroom, Virtual Classroom - Facilitation, Virtual Facilitation, Lessons Learned Series

Common Brain-Based Presenting Questions Answered

Posted by Katelind Hays on Dec 19, 2019 9:00:00 AM

Brain-Based Presenting and Facilitation TipsVirtually There session recap

At some point in your career, you will have to give a presentation or run a meeting.

If you work in the Learning & Development space, there’s a good chance you will have to facilitate training content.

Regardless of whether you assume a role frequently requiring live delivery or one that very rarely demands public speaking, you should know how to capture people’s attention.

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Topics: Virtual Classroom - Facilitation, Virtually There

Virtual Learning 101: Learner Engagement and Session Scheduling

Posted by Jennifer Hofmann on Nov 19, 2019 10:00:00 AM

Virtual Learning Fundamentals A few weeks ago, I responded to a number of fundamental questions about virtual learning. And in the process of reviewing the inquiries my team frequently receives when working with modern learners, new clients, and in established programs, I realized that much confusion remains around this learning environment.

Like the answers I recently provided to three common blended training questions, these answers also focus on practitioner core competencies and technology basics.

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Topics: Virtual Classroom - Instructional Design, Virtual Classroom - Facilitation, Global Virtual Classroom, Learner Engagement

Part Two: Using Facilitation to Connect with Your Audience at a Deeper Level

Posted by InSync Training on Oct 29, 2019 9:00:00 AM

Advanced Facilitation for Learner ConnectionRecently, we explored the theory behind how facilitators can quantify and qualify learner engagement in the virtual classroom. A theoretical foundation provides a jumping off point for practical application.

Our team relies on a number of tried-and-true facilitation methods to connect with live online learners more deeply and more meaningfully. For virtual facilitators, effectively “reading their audience” ensures learning actually happens.

These three techniques allow you, the facilitator, to move beyond basic presentation skills and towards more effective instruction that encourages learners to synthesize ideas and apply what they’ve learned in the protective classroom environment.

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Topics: Virtual Classroom - Facilitation, Advanced Facilitation Learner Engagement Series

Part One: Using Facilitation to Connect with Your Audience at a Deeper Level

Posted by InSync Training on Oct 17, 2019 8:30:00 AM

Facilitating virtual learning to engage with the audienceGood modern learning facilitators possess virtual classroom literacy, are technically savvy, and practice good time management skills.

All three of these characteristics contribute to a solid foundational skillset.

But taking your competencies from good to great involves an advanced approach to learner engagement, platform management, and content delivery.

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Topics: Virtual Classroom - Facilitation, Advanced Facilitation Learner Engagement Series

3 Characteristics of Good Virtual Classroom Facilitators

Posted by InSync Training on Oct 10, 2019 11:24:00 AM

Engaging virtual classroom facilitator What makes a virtual classroom facilitator good at what they do? Clients and learners ask us this question regularly. Heck, we ask ourselves this question regularly since it speaks to the fundamental value we deliver through our work! Because facilitators deeply impact the overall blend, our answer addresses technical expertise AND those fuzzy soft skills. 

In our experience as both learners and experts, good virtual classroom facilitators….

  • Demonstrate virtual classroom literacy.
  • Are digitally literate.
  • Manage time well.

In practice, these skillsets focus on the learner first, while the technology offers a way to achieve their goals.

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Topics: Virtual Classroom - Facilitation, Professional Development, Advanced Facilitation Learner Engagement Series

Laying the Foundation for Virtual Classroom Facilitation and Design

Posted by Jennifer Hofmann on Oct 1, 2019 9:45:06 AM

Virtual Classroom Instructional Design and Virtual Facilitation BasicsThere must be an instructional solution between a one-hour webinar and a six-week certificate…

The virtual classroom allows us to create learning experiences that weren’t available 20 years ago. We can space out lessons over days, weeks, and even months so that our learners can reflect on everything they’ve learned and practice those skills before returning to the virtual classroom to learn more. This is an instructionally sound approach, supported by research, that allows individuals to apply what they’ve learned and see a path forward towards mastery.

For example, InSync’s primary training audience consists of professional facilitators, instructional designers, and virtual classroom producers. Most of these individuals are experienced in supporting traditional classroom environments and have a need to add mastery of the virtual classroom to their existing skill sets. For this group of professionals, multiple-week blended learning experiences with rigorously assessed final projects makes sense. 

This intensive model works for most types of training when the intent is creating a path to mastery.

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Topics: Virtual Classroom - Instructional Design, Virtual Classroom - Facilitation

Try the Spacing Effect to Encourage Intellectual Engagement

Posted by InSync Training on Sep 12, 2019 10:31:50 AM

Using the Spacing Effect to Generate Learner EngagementIn modern blended learning, what learners think about information presented during the training experience matters. In fact, our research shows that this learner reaction perfectly defines the concept of intellectual engagement.

Intellectual engagement relies on intent. Did we design this content in a way that encourages learners perceive it as relevant, timely, and efficient? Did we deliver the information thoughtfully so that learners understand what the business expects of them?

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Topics: Virtual Classroom - Facilitation, Learner Engagement, Advanced Facilitation Learner Engagement Series

7 Ways Facilitators Can Nurture Emotional Engagement in the Virtual Classroom

Posted by Jennifer Hofmann on Sep 5, 2019 9:00:00 AM
how to nurture emotional engagement in the virtual classroom

This is the third installment in a series that explores actionable approaches virtual classroom facilitators can use to improve learner engagement through purposeful facilitation.

We often frame corporate training as a compulsory process: complete these requirements and move on to the next task. It's a reinforcement of a "Push" learning culture that is content-centric, and not a personal experience.

Effective learning involves an emotional component. Employees want to do well on the job. They hope to have the skills required to meet their goals. They stress about balancing their professional responsibilities while upskilling. The training function has an obligation to recognize these emotions, and facilitators can improve virtual training experiences by addressing them in their delivery approach.

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Topics: Virtual Classroom - Facilitation, Advanced Facilitation Learner Engagement Series