While most organisations realise the importance of investing in employee training, not all of them pay attention to implementing all steps necessary to ensure that knowledge acquired by their employees does not just remain theoretical – but results in practical application and improved overall performance.
How we learn
Most of us are familiar with Bloom’s Taxonomy that outlines six distinct levels of cognitive learning. When we learn, we gradually move from remembering and understanding to applying the knowledge; then to analysing and evaluating the outcomes – and, finally, to creating.
However, traditional training mostly involves only the first two levels of Bloom’s Taxonomy – remembering and understanding.
So, the training outcomes are usually evaluated using multiple-choice tests only designed to test remembering (and, to some degree, understanding) – and normally resulting in certification. Again, this can only confirm the retention and some level of understanding of the training material – but does nothing to move the training participants to level 3 of Bloom’s Taxonomy: applying the knowledge.
Moving from theory to practice
Our one day-long workshop, MarsLander, has been specially designed to move the participants from theoretical ITIL knowledge to its practical application. The participants have a chance to engage in a role play where they represent different stakeholders in the IT value chain in a facilitated business environment simulation. The session consists of multiple rounds. This allows participants not only to experiment with how their theoretical ITIL knowledge can be applied but also to evaluate and reflect on the outcomes – which results in further learning and improvement. The facilitator acts as a coach, providing feedback and supporting the participants as needed.
Our workshop is based on the experiential learning approach that relies on the fact that about 75% of our learning occurs through doing – and observing, reading, and listening combined account for only 25%.
As a result of the simulation workshop, the teams not only gain more experience in applying the ITIL knowledge but develop some practical solutions that can be later applied to real life scenarios. The participants are also more likely to buy into the new concepts after they have applied them – and to continue to do so in their real workplace environment.
Achieving your training goals and outcomes
When it comes to training, being clear about your goals is key to success. If you would like to gain theoretical knowledge and obtain a certificate in the end, then the ITIL Foundation course may be sufficient. If, however, your main objective is to see theory translated into practical application, then you should consider the ITIL 4 “Experiential” Foundation course.
Your ITIL course design
The good news is that the two approaches to learning – theoretical and experiential – can be successfully combined in your ITIL training course. Day 1 and Day 2 of your course will be dedicated to theory, with the simulation module concluding the training on Day 3. This way all the theoretical knowledge acquired during the first two days of your training can be successfully applied in the simulation environment, leaving the participants with some instruments ready to be applied in the real world.
For your ITIL training course, you can choose the traditional face-to-face option (subject to COVID-19 restrictions allowing it) – or you can elect to complete the course virtually. For example, we ran a number of successful virtual training sessions with the ATO following their recent ITIL rollout.
Why include a simulation module in your ITIL course?
Our organisational clients consistently report improved quality of customer interaction and service, reduced cost and effort in implementing best practices, and improved team cooperation after the simulation experience.
Do you agree that learning is about practical application of knowledge – not just certification? If you do, sign up for ITSM Hub’s ITIL 4 courses and maximise the benefits of theory by adding a simulation experience into your ITIL training course.