Today I conducted a short training on setting up WebDAV for Sakai today. This is part of a great number of courses that we are conducting for the migration from our current LMS (Learning Management System) to the Sakai CLE. We did not have a large turn out unfortunately, but I think the people that came to the training left with some useful knowledge. The participants actually work at our university’s computing center so there is a good chance that they would have a chance to pass this knowledge on to others as well.
Like everyone who does training, you want it to count for something. You want to feel like people are gaining information that is useful to them. I asked the participants why they thought that the turn out was low and one of them had a very good answer. Essentially, she said that people attend events based on what value they think they will get out of it but they are also considering what they could be doing if they did not attend. Will the gains offset what they could have been doing if they weren’t attending? So the best thing to do is always make sure you offer quality events that, most of all, are relevant to the needs of your audience.
I think what she said is very true. It is important to always consider what is important to your audience. For this seminar, I think the value and relevance is there, but the new LMS is still unfamiliar. Our audience hasn’t had a chance to even know if something is relevant. We have a group of early adopters and part of their role is to lead the way and show people that learning how to use Sakai is relevant and important to their jobs. Time will tell!