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Online vs Face-to-Face

Specifically the Level 3 Award in Education and Training

A few days ago a post popped up on my Facebook timeline, the post said “Hi all, just completed my 5-day classroom first aid trainer course, can anyone tell me what equipment I will need and where to get it from?”

Now, this rang some alarm bells with me, and this is the second reason why I’m writing this blog, I need to highlight a few points.

We run face-to-face courses and we also have the option of distance learning and for some courses e-learning. As much as I prefer face to face every time I have to ensure that as a business we are moving with the times, but also that our customers have the greatest flexibility to train from. Generally, most of our customers still opt for face-to-face training.

Our first aid instructor course is in my opinion the most thorough and dynamic on the market to date, and it's under continual development. I spent years in the armed forces in varying training roles from weapon systems to CBRN and first aid, and those that followed the system made the training dynamic and were continually improving moved ahead, and got the best results.

On our course, nothing is missed in those 5 days, even if we have to add on more training time per day we would do it to get these really important key points across. For a new instructor to ask on social media after spending over £900 is definitely not good and I feel this person was let down although they should have also raised it during the course, on our courses, this is covered in all aspects as it certainly a core key point for somebody going out to deliver training using a specific qualification specification and mandatory minimum equipment ratios. On our course the learner requires to achieve 35 hours of pre-course online learning, this is to ensure the learner has good knowledge on the level and type of qualification, therefore when there arrive we can really concentrate on the approach to training, the instructional techniques, the use of equipment and safety as well as the most important part of putting it all together and delivering in front of their peers in the classroom to ensure that by the end of the course they are absolutely ready to hit the ground running and be successful. Are 5 days even enough? Most likely not, but that’s what we have and they can then develop as they go with the groundwork cemented in place to stop them from having a car crash of a course. They can even shadow one of our core trainers if they wish and co-train as long as necessary in order to develop further.

We offer the distance learning version too, and yes it's cheaper and you have the benefit of doing it in your own time, what’s not to like, but we have had some serious issues with trainers who have taken this route and many don’t last in this industry, the reason is simple, they don’t get taken from a comfort zone and made to stand in front of other potential trainers 3-4 times minimum and deliver a structured lesson, they don’t get to see how we mask our movement, use correct EDIP or DRAIP types of training, they don’t get the keywords we use or the games and different styles of how to deliver, they don’t get to see how we assess or conduct live exams and assessments, the list really does go on. We have a trainer within our Core team, this trainer still trains for us and is certainly a valued member, however, they took the online route (with a different company prior to training for us), when it came to their recorded micro-teach it took 6-7 attempts to get it right and even then it wasn’t to our standards. And this is because the online way doesn’t give that raw ability to deliver and practice, during this trainers first and second quality assurance we were still developing them to a required standard, had this trainer taken our classroom route the whole story would have definitely been different, but we didn’t give up on them, development and the willingness to improve is the key. I might add that we will not take on trainers who have taken the distance learning route solely. Should our customers want this option with us they would still need to come in for some development on instructional techniques prior to onboarding. Those that do the face-to-face classroom courses with us and meet the required standard are welcome to onboard with us and deliver training nationwide for a generous day rate.

One other thing about classroom courses over distance learning is the networking side of it too, on completion the new instructors could easily be training for Comera Medical Training, or they could gain new relations and friends nationwide with the other learners and quite easily find other opportunities very quickly, this is certainly something that distance learning cannot give.

Am I saying that distance learning is not good? The answer is no, I am currently in the middle of 2 distance courses for career progression, And distance learning really suits me, but it's not essential for my core role. And those that do take this route may still succeed, it just depends on how much you want to develop and improve especially if the end result is going into businesses and other premises to deliver a fun, interesting, safe, and dynamic course.

I hope this helps with some decision making, and of course, people will all have differing opinions, our core business is training and this approach has seen us move forward quickly, keep our customers very happy, and wow new customers as we do progress so we are doing something very right.

Do you want to be a successful trainer, with full support before, during, and after the course, including accounts and administration? do you want no stone unturned with a proper training SME on a fun, engaging, and dynamic course that’s not 5 days of PowerPoint? Then come and speak to us. The world of compliance and training really needs quality trainers right now. We need you!


Mark Brown - Chief Medical Instructor




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