KEESLER AIR FORCE BASE, Miss. --
The 81st Training Support Squadron completed the first small group tryout of the new Enhanced Learning & Instructional Techniques Enrichment (ELITE) course for experienced technical training learning professionals Feb. 1 here.
In keeping with Air Education and Training Command’s Continuum of Learning’s goal of creating a culture of lifelong learning, the 81st TRSS developed ELITE, an advanced course for seasoned instructor professional development. The five-day course is tailored to the needs of seasoned instructors or other technical training professionals who are interested in learning student-centered active learning with upside-down pedagogies (SCALE-UP) methodologies.
“The goal is not to retrain students but to expose them to some of the new innovative approaches to training regardless of their current subject material,” said Kimberly Adams, 81st TRSS faculty development flight chief. “Plus we want to capitalize on their experience by affording students the opportunity to share and collaborate with other learning professionals.”
The curriculum, which builds upon the Basic Instructor Course, includes topics such as emotional intelligence in the classroom, instructional style, active learning strategies, and integrating multimedia. The course is designed to expose attendees to the basics of student-centered active learning concepts and methodologies, guidance on developing student-centered active learning lessons, and provides an opportunity for attendees to practice facilitating an active learning lesson with their fellow cohorts.
The first group to attend ELITE provided end-of-course survey comments such as that reinforced the success of the curriculum.
“I learned how important it is to be an instructor and facilitator,” said one review. “It’s all about blending!” “I learned that we are only limited by the limits we place on ourselves as instructors,” said another anonymous comment. “I believe the course is necessary for every BIC graduate teaching within the 81st TRG,” another said. “All instructors need to attend this course at some point, said one attendee. “I would like to see this as a long-term course provided to instructors approximately one year after graduating BIC.”
The reviews of this inaugural course helped to validate the curriculum development the 81st TRSS team has been working on this past year.
“While the approach attendees are learning is student-centered active learning, I like to think we are helping AETC learning professionals adopt an instructor-guided, Airman-focused mindset for 21st Century learning,” said Dr. Elizabeth ‘Lisa’ Rich, 81st TRSS curriculum development manager.
The course, while a huge accomplishment in its own right, is just one small step the 81st TRG is taking to meet the demands of the Air Force by continuously developing the methods they use to develop Mach-21 Airmen in AETC.
“The 81st TRSS Faculty Development Flight is committed to serving the needs of the Keesler AFB technical training community by offering a variety of professional development opportunities that align with the AETC’s CoL” said Adams. Additional small group tryouts are scheduled for March 11 and April 22. To register contact Mr. Jeff Edge at 377-0991 or firstname.lastname@example.org.