Writing Training Materials That Work : How to Train Anyone to Do Anything / Edition 1

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Going far beyond the latest instructional fads or merely theory, Writing Training Materials That Work offers an up-to-date synthesis and summary of "best practices" in instructional design. It provides specific how-to guidelines that are research-based, have been used by practitioners long enough to show they are acceptable and can be implemented in business settings, and— perhaps most importantly— produce consistently good instructional results. The book includes instructional strategies grounded in cognitive theory and covers a range of key areas, including Declarative Knowledge (facts, concepts, principles, and metal models), Procedural Knowledge (well-structured and ill-structured), Problem Solving— including a special chapter on teaching troubleshooting. The authors also provide a variety of illustrative examples, templates, and other useful job aids, which are also included in the CD-ROM that comes with the book.
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Editorial Reviews

From the Publisher
"The book has practical tips and techniques for applying cognitive psychology to training materials..." (IACET Book review, March 2003)
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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9780787964115
  • Publisher: Wiley, John & Sons, Incorporated
  • Publication date: 8/28/2003
  • Edition description: BK&CD-ROM
  • Edition number: 1
  • Pages: 272
  • Product dimensions: 8.20 (w) x 9.50 (h) x 1.01 (d)

Meet the Author

Dr. Wellesley (Rob) Foshay is vice president for instructional design and quality control for PLATO Learning, Inc. He formerly served on the Board of Directors of the International Society for Performance Improvement.

Dr. Ken Silber is associate professor of instructional design at Northern Illinois University in DeKalb, Illinois. He is a performance consulting/ID/change management professional with 30 years of experience in consulting in corporate, nonprofit, and academic settings both in the U.S. and internationally.

Dr. Michael B. Stelnicki is Professor and Chairman of the graduate Human performance and training program at Governors State University in University Park, Illinois. He is a thirty-five year veteran presenter in the field and has worked as a journalist, psychology instructor, instructional television producer/director and consultant to business and industry.

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Table of Contents

List of Figures.

Contents of the CD-ROM.





Chapter 1: The Cognitive Approach to Training Development.

The Cognitive Approach to Instructional Design.

The Cognitive Point of View on How Learning Occurs.

Declarative and Procedural Knowledge and Their Subtypes.


Chapter 2: A Cognitive Training Model.

A New Cognitive Model.

Learner Tasks and Lesson Elements.

How to Read the Cognitive Training Model.

Differentiating Our Model from Gagne's.

How to Use the Model.



Chapter 3: How to Begin Any Lesson: The First Three Lesson Elements.

About Using the Lesson Elements Attention, WIIFM, and YCDI to Begin a Lesson.

Using the Lesson Elements Attention, WIIFM, and YCDI to Begin a Lesson.


Chapter 4: How to Organize and Present Information: Message Design Principles.

About Using the Lesson Elements to Help Learners Organize the Information.


Chapter 5: Teaching Facts.

About Facts.

General Strategies for Teaching Facts.

Using the Lesson Elements to Teach Facts.


Chapter 6: Teaching Concepts.

About Concepts.

General Strategies for Teaching Concepts.

Using the Lesson Elements to Teach Concepts.


Chapter 7: Teaching Principles and Mental Models.

About Principles and Mental Models.

General Strategies for Teaching Principles and Mental Models.

Using the Lesson Elements to Teach Principles and Mental Models.


Chapter 8: Teaching Well-Structured Problem-Solving.

About Well-Structured Problem-Solving.

General Strategies for Teaching Well-Structured Problem-Solving.

Using the Lesson Elements to Teach Well-Structured Problem-Solving.


Chapter 9: Teaching Ill-Structured Problem-Solving.

About Ill-Structured Problem-Solving.

Problems Learning Ill-Structured Problem-Solving.

General Strategies for Teaching Ill-Structured Problem-Solving.

Using the Lesson Elements to Teach Ill-Structured Problem-Solving.


Chapter 10: Teaching Troubleshooting.

About Troubleshooting.

General Strategies for Teaching Troubleshooting.

Using the Lesson Elements to Teach Troubleshooting.


Chapter 11: Teaching Complete Lessons.

Combining Declarative and Procedural Teaching: Two Approaches.

Two Key ID Issues.


An Example of the Recommended Approach to Combined Lessons.



Chapter 12: Issues Underlying the Cognitive Approach to Instructional Design.

Purpose and Approach.

How the Behavioral and Cognitive Approaches Differ.


Chapter 13: Issues Underlying Teaching Declarative Knowledge.

How Declarative and Procedural Knowledge Differ.



Principles and Mental Models.

Common Errors in Teaching Declarative Knowledge.


Chapter 14: Issues Underlying Teaching Procedural Knowledge.

About Procedural Knowledge.


How Learners Solve Problems.

Problem-Solving Strategies.

Teaching Procedural Knowledge to Solve Problems.

Issues in Teaching Ill-Structured Problem Solving.

Issues in Teaching Troubleshooting.


Further Reading.

About the Authors.


How to Use the CD-ROM.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted March 9, 2004

    Don't buy

    This book is not detailed at all. It has practically no citations and most of the information, though they say it is well-researched, is given as the authors' opinion. The reason that there is no review except mine is that everybody else knew not to buy this book. The field of instructional design can do better than this. Sell it like Wellesley sold PLATO.

    1 out of 1 people found this review helpful.

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