Business Analysis Training Goes From the Classroom to the Web
The folks at BA-EXPERTS have — totally arbitrarily — determined that the current learning environment lacks a clear vocabulary for designing, and — from the customers’ perspective — choosing the mode best suited to his or her situation for acquiring business analysis (or, for that matter, any) skills. As you all know, they currently offer their business analysis training courses in the four modes: instructor-led classroom (onsite and online), self-paced eCourses, eBooks, and KnowledgeKnuggets™ (some of which are FREE). As a result of their long (and painful) contemplations on this matter, the folks at BA-EXPERTS have had several epiphanies that they would like to share with you.
Classic classroom presentations are structured to transfer a set of skills and techniques in a matter of days. There are economic reasons for this, namely that the instructor (and often many of the students) have to travel to get to the training location. This costs time and money (however you pay for it) so it just makes sense to make the most effective use of the time they are there. This typically leads to developing course content that groups skills and techniques for doing a set of related tasks into packages focused on jobs or responsibilities and that can be taught and absorbed by the audience over 2, 3, 4 (stretching it), or (heaven forbid) 5 days.
The Web-Based Training Paradigm: Instructor-Led vs Self-Paced
This paradigm does not necessarily hold in the online universe of web–based delivery. In this virtual world, you can log in, learn how to write requirements for IT projects (just as a for instance) and log out in a matter of hours instead of days. Courseware can be more focused on skills and techniques for completing a single task or creating a specific deliverable. Virtual instructor-led classes can therefore be chunked quite a bit smaller than conventional classroom material. In this setting, the chunks are a few minutes or hours long instead of days and typically present a couple of alternate methods or business analysis techniques so the attendee knows more than one way of getting a specific job done.
And then they have the self–paced (on–demand) world. In this environment, given the pervasiveness of the Internet, you should be able to acquire a usable skill or learn a specific technique in a matter of minutes, not hours or (heaven forbid) days wherever you are, whenever you want. This venue is ideal for presenting (or rehearsing) a single skill or technique for getting the task done. Over time, you can acquire alternate methods or techniques for getting it done, but each session should be no longer than 30 — 90 minutes or so and focus on a single technique.
The bottom line is that they now have more possibilities for transferring skills than ever before. The choice is yours.
So, now you know it. You can learn how to be a BA in a series of workshops, eCourses, eBooks or KnowledgeKnuggets™, or — if you want to go all out — blend them into any configuration that makes sense for you and yours. That is what we call blended learning, but that is a topic for a different day.