Social Justice and one of our own: Israel Vargas, MATD 2008



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Accelerated Online Courses: New Strategies for Successful Learning

As we begin rolling out our new eight-week online courses this summer, it’s important to consider the strategies that student need to be successful in an accelerated online format.

Accelerated online courses can save you time and money and are good for the environment too! Rather than commuting to and from class, you can complete your course when it’s convenient for you. Online learning can take place anywhere—across the nation, overseas, on plane, train, or even in a submarine (yes, we had a student complete online courses while on submarine duty in the Navy). Our accelerated courses last for 8 weeks, allowing you to focus on a course topic and often complete your degree program more quickly and efficiently. At the same time though, accelerated online classes require diligence and hard work of both the students and teacher.

All our online courses are carefully designed to maximize your learning experience. Based on the latest research in the best practices in online teaching, they incorporate constructivist, social, and experiential learning theory and practice to help you learn more effectively. You will use technology to interact with your instructor, your fellow students, and relevant course content. You will have the opportunity to develop knowledge that will directly benefit you in your career by applying what you are learning it to real life problems. Keep in mind that you are not a passive observer in our courses, but an active participant. Learning takes place when we not only take in new information, but also do something with it! To make learning stick, we must discuss it with classmates and experts, use it to solve real life problems, connect it with our work, and most importantly, reflect on what we are learning. Our courses provide ample opportunity for these critical learning activities. Assignments and activities are designed to help you deepen your understanding and apply what you learn to new situations.

Accelerated courses require dedicated commitment from you. What you put into your course will greatly affect what you get from it. You will need to be more diligent than ever to make sure that you don’t fall behind to maximize your learning benefit.

Here are strategies used by past students that helped them succeed in accelerated courses:

  • Complete readings before the Module begins to make sure you are off to a quick start.
  • Log into the course site at least 3 times each week to post to forums and follow-up on the posts of others.
  • Start working on written assignments early in the Module so you aren’t rushing at the end to finish.
  • Don’t forget to take the time to reflect on what you have learned. Considering recording your learning in a journal or notebook to take an active role in your learning experience. Also, be sure to think about how you might use and apply what you have learned.

Summary of Key Points

  • Learning is not a spectator sport—you need to stay actively involved.
  • Take initiative and be a self-directed learner.
  • Accelerated courses move quickly and require regular attention and diligence.
  • You will learn more and use it more effectively if you stay active and engaged.
  • Your assignments will help you learn and apply new knowledge.

We want to hear from you. If you are a student taking an accelerated online course or a teacher facilitating a course, add a comment to this post to let us know if you have additional suggestions or success strategies to add to our list.

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Gone Fishing? Not quite…

Sunglasses-avec-livreWe are continuing our tradition of officially being on hiatus during the summer term. However, we will publish an occasional article, but not on a regularly scheduled basis.

Faculty are busy researching, writing, and teaching.  Our graduate assistant and blog master, Eric Hahn, will be keeping himself busy by taking two courses.

We will return to our schedule of publishing posts on Mondays and jobs/internships on Wednesdays in late August.

Have a great summer!

Vince Cyboran, Ed.D.
Chair, Graduate Program in Training and Development



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Now’s the time to intern and get real-world experience

Employers like a sure thing. They prefer job candidates who’ve proven themselves in the field and have the work samples to prove it.

intern_2For students trying to break into their area of study, there’s no better way to build experience and a portfolio than a professional internship.

It’s not too late to land a summer internship. Here are some valuable opportunities for emerging instructional designers and learning professionals in the Chicago area. Also, if your company is looking for summer help, let us know and we’ll get the word out to our audience of Roosevelt Training & Development students and others in the field. If you’re looking for a permanent position, check out our freshly updated job board.

Training and Implementation Intern
Company: ADP
Location: Hoffman Estates, IL
Description: The Training and Implementation Intern position will assist with multiple projects in instructional design and learning development. Duties may include:
• Research, write, edit, and produce training materials for classroom and/or computer-based delivery.
• Conduct training needs assessments for associate and client training.
• Determine needs for future materials.
• Develop clear objectives for the training. Select the media for delivery of the training. Develop the content of the training material. Conduct reviews of the training materials.
• Coordinate production tasks for the training material. (Print, web, CD, etc.) Revise training material as necessary.
• Demonstrate technical proficiency in software tools used to develop, deploy, and support courses.
About ADP: Consistently named one of the “Most Admired Companies” by FORTUNE® Magazine, and recognized by Forbes® as one of “The World’s Most Innovative Companies,” ADP has over a half-million clients around the globe and 65 years of experience as one of the largest providers of business outsourcing and human capital management solutions world-wide.
Contact: Kathleen Hack, Sr. University Specialist Talent Acquisition,
Apply here Search and apply to req #70404

Instructional Design Internship
Company: UL Firefighting Safety Research Institute
Location:Northbrook, IL
Description: The intern selected for this role will assist in creating an eLearning course and supporting online materials based on research conducted by UL’s Firefighter Safety Research Institute. Responsibilities will include tasks involved in the creation of an eLearning course:
• Work with internal subject matter experts to identify content and create course scripts.
• Write eLearning content that is grammatically correct and free of typographical errors.
• Edit course audio and video files.
• Use e-learning authoring tools to design and develop interactive learning content (Articulate Storyline).
About the company: UL Firefighting Safety Research Institute is dedicated to increasing firefighter knowledge to reduce injuries and deaths in the fire service and in the communities they serve.
Apply here

Learning and Development Intern
Company: CNA Insurance
Location: Chicago
Description: CNA’s internship in Learning and Development offers a dynamic ten to twelve week program that will provide:
• Challenging, innovative assignments to gain real-world experience in learning and organizational change
• Opportunity to partner on design and development of learning solutions for strategic priority projects
• A platform to implement best practices for uniformed employee Onboarding across all business areas and stages of the talent pipeline
• Opportunity to develop communication strategies for roll-out of learning solutions that drive organizational change
• Opportunity to create and implement a learning measurement strategy for priority projects
• Active engagement with various HR functions and learning and organizational development leaders throughout the program
• Exposure to the role of Learning and Development and the broader Human Resources function within a global organization
At the conclusion of the internship, individuals may be given consideration for full-time employment based on business need.
About CNA: As the 8th largest U.S. commercial insurer and the 13th largest U.S. property & casualty insurer, CNA provides insurance protection to more than one million businesses and professionals in the U.S. and internationally. CNA understands the importance of being where our customers are. Headquartered in Chicago, CNA has offices throughout the U.S., Canada and Europe. 
Apply here

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A Questionable Start to Summer

If the recent weather pattern continues we should expect to see summer weather sometime in July. Don’t let that fool you-summer semester starts on 5/19. While our Chicago weather remains unpredictable there are a few, less variable, questions you can answer as we head in to summer.

Have you enrolled in summer courses yet?

Move this to the top of your “to do” list! View the schedule here Please contact me if you need your registration code.

Do you need a review of TRDV 451 Instructional Systems Design?

Dr. Cyboran is conducting an Instructional Design “Jumpstart” on Saturday May 17th from 9:30-12:30.During this three-hour, casual, work session, you will become familiar with a logical and systematic process of designing instructor-led training. We’ll work in teams to design training for a generic case and then link your work to the generic model of instructional systems design, Analysis, Design, Development, Implementation, and Evaluation (ADDIE) and to the Dick and Carey model of instructional systems design.

The session is required for all students enrolled in TRDV 451 this summer but is also open to any students who feel like they could a review of the material. Contact me for more details or to sign up

Are you graduating this the summer? 

Be sure to apply through Graduation Services

Finally, (no question about it) on behalf of the Training and Development department I want to thank you for a great spring semester.

- Tara, Program Coordinator, Graduate Program in Training and Development




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Guest post: Training skills and culture can tame the Wolves of Wall Street

By Mike Hilty
Mike Hilty is a student in Roosevelt University's Training & Development Program.

Mike Hilty is a student in Roosevelt University’s Training & Development Program.

Every year, I try to watch all the movies nominated for Best Picture for the Academy Awards. Some movies I have no interest in watching (looking at you, “Captain Phillips”), some are a pleasant surprise (“Her” and “Nebraska”), and some are a little disappointing (ugh, “Gravity”).

For me, the most surprising was “The Wolf of Wall Street.” If you have three hours to spare, I’d recommend checking it out. For those who don’t have time, it’s about a Wall Street stock broker named Jordan Belfort. Jordan created a brokerage firm aimed at recommending shady stocks. Forbes magazine described Jordan as a kind of twisted Robin Hood who takes from the rich and gives to himself and his merry band of brokers (Khalaf, 1991).

Leonardo DiCaprio as Jordan Belfort in "The Wolf of Wall Street." Paramount Pictures photo.

Leonardo DiCaprio as Jordan Belfort in “The Wolf of Wall Street.” Paramount Pictures photo.

From a business standpoint, this movie is a good lesson in the importance of organizational culture. Although Jordan trained his employees to do shady business, these practices helped instill a culture of assuring clients and pushing them to purchase recommended stocks. Jordan was charismatic and persistent. These two dominant traits directly translated into the culture he wanted for his company. Similarly, trainers need to be mindful of the culture they’re establishing, especially since many practitioners learn on the job, where the values and assumptions of the dominant culture guide behavior. (Bunch, 2007, pg 155).

A trainer’s job is to not only teach the skills necessary for being successful at a job, but also to establish a relationship with the culture and values of the organization. The more entwined values and culture are with training, the more likely employees will be successful and remain at an organization long-term. Culture can be a force for good (look at non-profits) and a force for bad (Enron, Stratton Oakmont, and any number of companies in legal trouble) but it all starts with how these people are trained.

References: Bunch, K. (2007). Training Failure as a consequence of Organizational Culture. Human Resource Development Review. Vol 6. 142-163. Khalaf, R. (1991). Steaks, Stocks – What’s the Difference? Forbes Magazine.

What do you think?
What does corporate culture mean to you? Is corporate culture taught, acquired, or should recruiters find people who would already fit into the corporate culture in the first place? Do you know of any corporate cultures you’re jealous of?

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Guest post: How women can become even better leaders

Andrea Bundt is a student in Roosevelt's Training and Development graduate program.

Andrea Bundt is a student in Roosevelt’s Training and Development graduate program.

Although Women’s History month ended in March, I’m extending the conversation with ways for women can be better leaders in the workplace. A recent T&D magazine article, ‘Women, Seize Your Leadership Role’ by Lynda McDermott, stressed the importance for women to know their career goals, establish a plan to achieve those goals and then learn and promote their value. It’s not enough to “Lean In” as Sheryl Sandberg, Facebook COO, wrote in her book. Women must proactively assess their development. In the T&D article, Tricia Naddaff, president and CEO of Management Research Group (MRG) offers women ways to better enhance and approach their leadership role based on years of leadership assessment gender:

• Spend more time on building business acumen.
• According to the MRG, bosses only see women less effective in three competency areas (out of 26): Business aptitude, financial understanding and ability to see the big picture.
• Make more time for strategic thinking and planning
• Women tend to focus on the more immediate and time-consuming short-term results and do not make enough time to think long-term. Long-term strategic thinking is critical skill for more senior leadership roles
• Develop the ability to sell yourself and your ideas to others
• If you are uncomfortable in a skill or dimension, you are leaving others to make assumptions about your value and ideas for you. Take time to learn how to persuade others and expand your credibility
• Delegate more. This gives you time for higher-level engagement. Women might avoid assigning work certain tasks because they think they can do them faster and better or they are more empathetic toward direct reports being too busy for more work. Unfortunately, this leads to exhaustion and leaves less time for strategizing and building business acumen.

Overall it is important to take the time to see where there are areas of improvement and take note of the pitfalls that may appear along the way. Create development plans and seek feedback from your peers and management. The only way to get better is focus on actionable items to help achieve the leadership success you desire.

Read on

• For more insight, check out this New York times article:  ‘Four Executives on Succeeding in Business as a Woman’.
• If you’re looking for more job resources and professional connections, join American Society of Training and Development.

What do you think?

• In order to focus on strategic thinking and building business acumen, what is one way you delegate more this week?
• What peers and management will you seek development feedback from?
• When will you take time to create development plan? What resources will you use?

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