Business Glossary & Dictionary

Business Glossary and Dictionary of Terms

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Ability The capacity to perform an act, either innate or as the result of learning and practice.
Ability Grouping Arrangement whereby students are assigned to groups on the basis of aptitude testing.
Accelerated Learning Combining adult learning theory and whole brain learning theory in the learning environment to achieve a faster learning rate.
Accounts Payable Short term debts incurred as the result of day-to-day operations.
Accounts Receivable Monies due your organisation as the result of day-to-day operations.
Accrual Based Accounting An accounting method that enters income and expenses into the books at the time of contract versus when payment is received or expenses incurred.
Accuracy The degree of freedom from error or the degree of conformity to a standard.
Achievement A measurement of what a person knows or can do after training.
Action Learningtop This is a continuous process of learning and reflection with the intention of getting something done. Learning is centred on the need to find a solution to a real problem. Reg Ravens is said to be the originator of “action learning”The six steps are:

1) Formulate Hypothesis

2) Design Experiment

3) Apply in Practice

4) Observe Results

5) Analyse Results

6) Compare Analysis

Action Maze A case study which has been programmed. Learners receive enough information to take them to their first decision point. The decision then takes them to the next frame, which explains the consequence of their decision. This process is continued until the maze has been completed.
Action Verb A word that conveys action/behaviours and reflects the type of performance that is to occur (i.e., place, cut, drive, open, hold). Action verbs reflect behaviors that are measurable, observable, verifiable, and reliable.
Active Learningtop A process of learning new ideas, skills and attitudes through what we do at work or in other behavioral situations. It is about learning from doing, performing, and taking action. The action can be either mental (e.g. reflection) or physical (e.g. case study). It uses such devices as games, simulations, introspection, role playing, etc.
Active Learning A learning principle that says participants learn more when they are actively involved in the process. Remember the saying “we learn more by doing”.
Activity Step The step of learner activity based on the enabling objective. In achieving the activity the learner is carried through the teaching points and the teaching steps.
Actuals Information about the current skills, knowledge, perspectives and environment of individuals in an organisation. Specifics about what people now do.
Adaptive Branching (Adjustive Device) Any of several techniques used in scheduling to accommodate individual differences. It may permit the student to bypass material they already know or may provide them with additional instruction as needed.
Adjunct Programtop An instructional or training method that applies programming principles to existing course materials, texts, manuals, etc. Learners are directed to specific areas within these materials that support course objectives; then directed to respond and given confirmation until they have progressed through the material and have accomplished predetermined objectives.
Adult Learning Principles Based on the work of Malcolm Knowles, adult learning principles refer to ways in which adult learning differs from child learning. Principles include difference in self-concept, importance of mutual respect, learning through discovery, responsibility for learning, ability to self-evaluate, difference in accumulated experience, the need to unlearn fixed habits, and the importance of applicability to real-life problems (“what’s in it for me.”)
Agenda A list, plan or outline of things to be done before, during and after the training. An agenda is the road map that will lead to the achievement of the learning objectives. Everyone needs a plan and wants to know where you are leading them.
Analogy A cognitive process in which an example or schema is used to map a new solution for a similar problem.
Analysis Phase First phase of any Instructional Design System. The purpose of this phase is to determine what the job holder must know or be able to do on the job and to determine training needs.
Anecdote A short story used to help illustrate a point, usually tailored to the needs of the learner
Aptitude The ability of an individual to acquire a new skill or show the potential for acquiring a skill when given the opportunity and proper training.
Assessmenttop A measurement process of the learning that has either taken place or can take place. Usually measured against stated learning outcomes: Predictive assessment attempts to measure what the learner might achieve given suitable training Attainment assessment attempts to measure what the learner knows or can do, and is usually related to the syllabus of a course the learner has followed
Assets All real or intellectual property owned by the organisation that has a positive financial value.
Asynchronous Learning Any learning event that is delivered after the original live event. Also used to indicate a learning event where the interaction is delayed over time, such as a correspondence course.
Attitude A feeling or emotion of a person that influences choice of action and response to stimulus. Defined as a disposition or tendency to respond positively or negatively towards a certain thing (idea, object, person, and situation). They encompass, or are often closely related to, our opinions and beliefs and are based upon our experiences.
Audio-Visual Aids Training or educational materials directed at both the sense of hearing and the sense of sight. Including: Flip charts, overhead transparencies, graphical presentations, computer-based presentations, slide presentations, videos and DVD’s are some examples of audio-visual aids.
Authoring A structured approach to developing all elements of a unit of instruction.
Authoring Tool Software application used to produce media-based learning content.
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Balance Sheet A statement of assets and liabilities.
Bandwidth Information carrying capacity of a communication channel.
Barriers To Entrytop Conditions that create difficulty for competitors to enter the market. For example, copyrights, trademarks, patents, dedicated distribution channels and high initial investment requirements.
Baseline A set of measurements (metrics) that seek to establish the current starting level of a performance. These measurements are usually established before implementing improvement activities.
Behaviour Any activity the learner will be expected to exhibit after training. The activity should be observable and measurable. It is the primary component of any objective.
Behaviorism Belief that learning results in a change in the learner’s behavior. The focus of behaviorists is on the outputs of the learning process. The study of learning only through the examination and analysis of objectively observable and quantifiable behavioral events, in contrast with subjective mental states.
Block Of Instruction A group of related instructional units or modules covering a major subject area.
Brain Dominance An individual’s preference for using one’s cognitive abilities. There are two styles of thinking – right brain (intuitive, spontaneous, and qualitative) and left brain (factual, analytical and quantitative).
Brainstorming A group method for collecting ideas and suggestions from the participants. This technique is used to problem solve and collect information by stimulating creative thinking through unrestrained and spontaneous participation in discussion.
Branching An instructional technique, usually in the form of programmed text, in which the learner’s next step of instruction is determined by her response to a previous step. Two or more directions in a program path can go from a decision point.
Break-Even Point The point at which revenues are equal to expenses.
Broadcast Method of transferring learning content to many learners simultaneously.
Business Servicestop Services offered to commercial organisations, such as: equipment maintenance, supplying of part time personnel, engineering, design and management consulting, etc.
Bypassing In programmed instruction, a technique that permits a student to skip certain portions of the material because of prior knowledge.
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Capital The financial investment required to initiate and/or operate an organisation.
Case Study A documented description of a problem situation that contains enough detail to enable the learners to recommend a solution.
Cash Based Accounting An accounting method that enters income and expenses into the books at the time when payment is received or expenses incurred.
Cash Flow The transfer of monies into and out of an organisation.
Causes What gets in the way of individual and organisational performance? There are normally four kinds of causes: absence of skills and knowledge or information, weak motivation, improper environment, and flawed incentives.
Certification Programme and process where a learner completes prescribed training and passes an assessment with a minimum acceptable result.
Chaining An instructional technique that transforms a learned response into a stimulus for the next desired response.
Checklist A list of relevant items to be considered when preparing and conducting a training programme or activity.
Clusteringtop A process of organizing many tasks into groups for the purpose of deciding upon the optimal instructional setting mix for that group of tasks. Also pertains to sequencing groups of objectives within a course of instruction.
Coach A person, who instructs, demonstrates, directs, and prompts learners.
Cognitive From the Latin cogito; “I think”. The mental processes of perception, memory, judgment, and reasoning. Cognitive also refers to attempts to identify a perspective or theory in contrast to emphasizing observable behavior.
Cognitive Engagementtop The intentional and purposeful processing of lesson content. Engagement, in effect, requires strategies that promote manipulation rather than memorization, as the means through which learners acquire both lesson knowledge and deeper conceptual insight. Engagement can be elevated through a variety of activities such as inducing cognitive dissonance, posing argumentative questions requiring the development of a supportable position, and causing learners to generate a prediction and rationale during a lesson.
Cognitivists Believe that learning occurs when learners are able to add new concepts and ideas to their cognitive structure by recognizing a relationship between something they already know and what they are learning. The focus of cognitivists is on the inputs of the learning process. Cognitive theorists emphasize internal processes and knowledge representations which are impossible to observe directly, but which are inferred.
Collaborative Learning A more radical departure from “cooperative learning”. It involves learners working together in small groups to develop their own answer through interaction and reaching consensus, not necessarily a known answer. Monitoring the groups or correcting “wrong” impressions is not the role of the trainer since there is no authority on what the answer should be.
Collateral Assets that can be pledged to guarantee a loan.
Collective Task A task that requires more than one individual to complete with each individual performing a discreet part of the collective task.
Common Learning Objective A learning objective written for a task element (supporting skill or knowledge) that is common to two or more tasks.
Competencytop A knowledge, skill, ability, or trait which is needed to succeed at a particular task or job.
Competency Model A list of critical knowledge, skills, abilities, and traits needed to succeed in a job, job family, or organisation. Competency models can be used to select, develop, evaluate, and reward performers. Some models focus on baseline (minimal level) skills needed while others identify target competencies needed for mastery of performance. Competency models often identify competencies which must be selected for (because they are innate or hard to train) and those which may be developed or learned through training or coaching.
Competency-Based Training Instruction that is organized around a set of learning objectives based upon the knowledge, skills and attitudes required to perform a set of skills called competencies.
Competent (Competency) Possessing sufficient or suitable skill, knowledge or experience to achieve a specific objective.  For example: He is competent to use a ladder in our building.
Competitive Actiontop A purposeful event designed to overcome the advantages of another company, or to advance your company over another. A competitive action can be for or against your company. The key is to identify the action taken as it pertains to a certain event, from the event then identify the goals and objectives of the parties involved.
Compilation A learning process in which learners embed declarative knowledge in highly domain specific rules or productions.
Computer-Assisted Instruction (CAI) The use of computers to aid in the delivery of instruction in which the system allows for remediation based on answers but not for a change in the underlying program structure.
Computer-Based Training (CBT) – or E-Learning Training that is delivered via a computer as opposed to a trainer or paper-based format. CBT programmes usually incorporate a mix of text, graphics, animation and interactive exercises.
Concepttop A mental picture of a group of things that have common characteristics. A generalization is a person’s idea of the relationships between two or more concepts. Concepts represent a group of solid objects, such as an airplane or book; or abstract ideas, such as leadership and honesty. A concept is an idea about a group of things. A concept involves thinking about what it is that makes those things belong to that one group.
Concept Map  or Learning Map The arrangement of major concepts from a text or lecture into a visual arrangement. Lines are drawn between associated concepts, and relationships between the connected concepts are named. These concept maps reveal the structural pattern in the material and provide the big picture. Sometimes called Mind Maps.
Condition The component of an objective that describes the situation, environment, or limitations in which the learner must exhibit the specified behavior.
Conditional Branching Branching which occurs when a specified condition or set of conditions is satisfied.
Conditioned Response A response that has been learned through employing a specific stimulus.
Conference A group of people who get together to exchange information and ideas on a specific topic.
Confirmationtop Giving each learner knowledge of the results of each exercise throughout the training process. This reinforces or rewards the learner during the entire learning situation.
Constraint Any element or factor that prevents a person from reaching a higher lever of performance with respect to their goal.
Constructed Response An answer requiring recall or completion as opposed to recognition (e.g., drawing a diagram, filling in a form, and labeling the parts of a piece of equipment). A term often used in the construction of e-learning based materials
Contextual Interference Various factors inhibit a quick and smooth mastery of a skill.
Contract Learning Also known as self-directed learning. It is a relatively new concept to trainers and learners. It allows the learner to select the topics or competencies they want to learn.
Controlled Pacingtop A programming principle that implies self-pacing within an instructional system. The information and learner activity are developed so that the learners can progress toward the criterion objectives according to their own learning ability.
Convenience Goods - Goods often used by the consumer, but the consumer is unwilling to spend “shopping time” to acquire them. This covers a broad spectrum of products including candy, cigarettes, drugs, newspapers, magazines and most grocery products.
Cooperative Learning Involves the more conventional notion of cooperation, in that learners work in small groups on an assigned project or problem under the guidance of the trainer. Also see collaborative learning.
Core Competencies Those things that are essential and “must” be learned for an individual to accomplish the primary objectives of their job. The central, innermost or most essential part of what the trainee must know to do their job effectively.
Core Curriculum A curriculum in which all or some of the subjects or courses are based on a central theme in order to correlate the subjects and the theme.
Corporate Image Advertising A “corporate image” ad is designed to primarily promote the organisation and secondarily promote the products or services of the organisation.
Correlation The relationship between two sets of data, that when one changes, the other is likely to make a corresponding change. If the changes are in the same direction, then there is a positive correlation. If it is in the opposite direction, then it is a negative correlation.
Cost Of Goods The direct costs involved in producing a product or service which usually includes labour and materials.
Cost Of Sales The cost of goods plus the expenses involved in selling and delivering the product or service.
Counsellingtop A means of assisting and developing students and subordinates. A leader/instructor counsels subordinates: to praise and reward good performance, to develop teamwork, to inform students on how well or how poorly they are performing, to assist students to reach required standards, to cause students to set personal and professional goals, and to help students resolve personal problems.
Course A complete integrated series of lessons which are identified by a common title and/or number.
Course Management Plan A document that includes the course description and the administrative directions for managing a course. Sometimes called a training management plan.
Course Map A chart that depicts the designed sequence for events of a course.
Course Trials A full length course conducted in a target environment (facilities, trainers and students) using the curriculum and supporting training material prepared for that course. It has as its purpose the “shaking down” or “validating” of the curriculum and materials in a classroom situation to determine their effectiveness in attaining the approved learning objectives or training goals. Also called “pilot course”.
Courseware The media, either text, computer program, or CD-ROM, that contains the instructional content of the course.
Criteriontop The standard by which something is measured. In training, the task or learning objective standard is the measure of student performance. In test validation, it is the standard against which test instruments are correlated to indicate the accuracy with which they predict human performance in some specific area. In evaluation it is the measure used to determine the adequacy of a product, process, or behavior.
Criterion Referenced Instruction Testing of the objectives as a learner progresses through the course of instruction. Learners pass or fail depending upon their attainment of the objectives and NOT in accordance with their rank or standing among peers.
Critical Incident Techniquetop A methodology of task analysis which determines the tasks to be included in instruction. Experts identify the critical job incidents and their products. Incidents are edited for redundancy, grouped into similar tasks, and then classified as positive or negative incidents. The incidents are summarized and then validated by the experts for completeness. This is a useful means for obtaining a list of relevant, real-world tasks to be included in instruction.
Cross-Training Providing training in several different areas, functions or activities. This provides backup workers when the primary worker is unavailable.
Current Assets Assets that can be converted quickly to cash.
Current Liabilities All debts incurred in the normal day-to-day business and due within one calendar year.
Curriculum The aggregate of courses of study given in a learning environment. The courses are arranged in a sequence to make learning a subject easier.
Customer One that buys goods or services. One whose desires are fulfilled in monetary exchange. Internally: An individual who is served by another individual with a specific series of tasks or desired outcome.
Customer Interaction Point A moment where a product or service may be used, seen, or considered by someone qualified to purchase it.
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Debt Service The regular payments required to keep a loan current.
Decay Rate The amount of time it takes learners to forget what they have learned in training. The decay rate can be stopped or slowed by having them use their new skills upon their return to the job.
Deductive Design An instructional design where rules are presented followed by examples. The emphasis is on forming conclusions.
Delivery Any method of transferring offerings to learners. Variants are instructor-led training, web-based distance learning, online laboratory, CD-ROM, and books.
Delivery Of Training


The implementation of a training solution such as a workshop, job aid, written or computer-based self-study program. When the training solution is implemented, it is available to the learner and ready for use.
Demographic Information Numbers and population, for example; the size of the audience, location of the presentation etc. Factors which will impact the effectiveness of the training.
Demonstration A method for showing participants how to do a specific task or skill.
Demonstration-Performance Method A learning experience in which students observe and then participate in a sequence of events designed to teach a procedure, a technique, or an operation, frequently combining oral explanation with the operation or handling of systems, equipment, or materials.
Dependent Learning Objective Skills and knowledge in one learning objective that are related to those in another learning objective. In order to master one of the learning objectives, it is first necessary to learn the other.
Depreciation The gradual erosion of the usability and value (possibly due to obsolescence) of an organisation’s fixed assets. In some cases depreciation can be declared as a tax deduction.
Design Of Training/Learning Intervention The process of determining the purpose, objectives, structure, format, and instructional methods for a training program or learning intervention, such as coaching, OJT, and so forth.
Design Phase


The second of the Instructional System Design phases. The learning objectives, tests, and the required skills and knowledge for a task are constructed and sequenced.
Design Review A technique for evaluating a proposed design
Design Specifications (Design Specs) A written document summarizing the design blue print for a training or learning intervention which helps to guide the design team. Design specifications s usually include the following sections:

  • Background or context
  • Target audience
  • Purpose
  • Learning Objectives
  • Requirements
  • Constraints
  • Modules & Topics
Development Growth of people to acquire new horizons, technologies, or viewpoints. It enables leaders to guide their organisations onto new expectations by being proactive rather than reactive. It enables workers to create better products, faster services, and more competitive organisations. It is learning for growth of the individual, but not related to a specific present or future job.
Development Of Training/ Learning Intervention


The development phase follows the design phase. It includes creation of any materials involved in a training program, job aid, or intervention. Development results in the finished products needed to deliver training, e.g. trainer’s( instructor’s) leader’s guide, trainee (participant) workbook, hand outs, flip charts, CBT story board (script), video tape, etc.
Development Phase The third of the Instructional System Design phases. The purpose of this phase is to develop and validate the instructional material (courseware).
Developmental Need A gap between an individual’s current skill/knowledge/ability level and the level required for effective performance success in the future.
Didactic Design Instructional design in which the student is presented information and asked to respond to questions.
Differential Feedback Test response feedback specific to the multiple choice answer selected by the student.
Difficulty-Importance-Frequency Model One of several models available for use in selecting tasks for training. Using this model, tasks are identifies as critical based on The difficulty, importance, and frequency of job task performance.
Direct Sales Method Selling direct to the end user with promotional efforts using advertising, direct mail or telephone sales.
Discovery Learning Students learn by doing and experiencing, rather than relying only on the trainer/ facilitator.
Discrimination The ability to choose between two closely related responses to a specific stimulus.
Distance Learning


The provision of a structured learning programme delivered remotely from the learners. Media may include books, workbooks, video, e-learning etc.  Many programmes have a level of classroom based activity integrated. Often used for qualifications rather than work based learning
Distracter In testing, incorrect answers provided as choices in multiple choice or matching type test items.
Distributed Learning Students take courses from a variety of sources (and delivery modes) to customize a program of study. Often is used synonymously with online learning.
Distribution Channel The path your product follows to be delivered to the end user. This may be through distributors, retail outlets, self service outlets, vending machines, telephone sales, direct mail sales, etc.
Distribution Method A way of delivering training/information electronically. Methods include audio tape, cable TV, CD-ROM, Electronic Mail, Internet, Intranet, LAN (local area network), Satellite TV, Telephone, Videotape, Voice Mail, etc.
Distributor An organisation that purchases your products for resale to their customers who are usually retail outlets. The distributor expects to receive a significant price discount for providing the distribution service.
Document Of Understanding (DOU) A written document which describes the background, purpose, benefits, scope, deliverables, assumptions, resource requirements, time frames, and change management procedure for a given project. It includes a “sign-off” section which should be signed and dated by the sponsor, business partners, project manager, and other key project resources once the project parameters have been finalized.
Duty A combination of related tasks equal a duty and duties combine to form a job.
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E-Book Offerings that organize text and graphics into on-line lessons or chapters like traditional print books.


Training people to do a different job. It is often given to people who have been identified as being promotable, being considered for a new job either lateral or upwards, or to increase their potential.
Educational Technology A complex, integrated process involving people, procedures, ideas, devices, and organisation, for analyzing problems, and devising, implementing, evaluating and managing solutions to those problems, involved in all aspects of human learning.
Efficiency A measure (as a percentage) of the actual output to the standard output expected. Efficiency measures how well someone is performing relative to expectations.
E-Learning The use of innovative technologies and learning models to transform the way individuals and organisations acquire new skills and access knowledge.
Elements Components of a task or the smallest meaningful activity that describes what an individual is expected to be able to do
Enabling Learning Objective (ELO) A statement in behavioural terms of what is expected of the student in demonstrating mastery at the knowledge and skill level necessary for achievement of a Terminal Learning Objective (TLO) or another ELO.
Equity A percentage ownership of an organisation, usually in the form of stock.
Ergonomics An approach to job design that focuses on the interactions between the person and the environmental elements such as the work station, light, sound, tools, etc.


The process of gathering information in order to make good decisions. It is broader than testing, and includes both subjective (opinion) input and objective (fact) input. Evaluation can take many forms including memorization tests, portfolio assessment, and self-reflection. There are at least six major reasons for evaluating training, each requiring a different type of evaluation: *Improve the instruction (formative evaluation) *Promote individual growth and self-evaluation (evaluation by both trainer and learner) *Assess the degree of demonstrated achievement (summative evaluation) *Diagnose future learning needs (of both trainer and learner) *Enhance one’s sense of merit or worth (learner) *Identify or clarify desired behaviours (trainer)
Evaluation Testing and comparing results.
Evaluation Hierarchy (Four Levels Of Evaluation Model) Donald Kirkpatrick identified the evaluation model most widely recognized today in corporate training organisations. The Kirkpatrick Model addresses the four fundamental behaviour changes that occur as a result of training. *Level one is how participants feel about training (reaction). This level is often measured with attitude questionnaires. *Level two determines if people memorized the material (learning). This is often accomplished with pre-testing and post-testing. *Level three answers the question, “Do people use the information on the job?” This level addresses transference of new skills to the jobs (behavior change). This is often accomplished by observation.
Evaluation Instrument A test or other measuring device used to determine achievement (go and no-go) or the relative standing of an individual or group or a test objective (i.e., attitude, behavior, performance objective, and other attributes). Evaluation instruments include tests, rating forms, inventories, and standard interviews.
Evaluation Phase The fifth of Instructional System Design phases. The purpose of this phase is to determine the value or worth of the instructional program. This phase is actually conducted during and between all the other phases.
Evolutionary Approach A method for developing training programs. It includes both deterministic and incremental systems, in contrast to the systems approach, which is entirely deterministic. This means that in an evolutionary approach, tentative or short term goals may be specified. This approach is particularly appropriate for situations where there is limited past experience from which to draw guidance.
Exercise A structured experience in which the participants are involved.
Experiential Learning A learning activity having a behavioral based hierarchy that allows the student to experience and practice job related tasks and functions during a training session.
Extrapolation A sub-level of the comprehension level of learning in which students develop sufficient understanding to estimate trends or predict outcomes based upon the subject matter under study.
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Face-To-Face Learners and trainers are in the same location at the same time.
Facilitation The process of helping a group to accomplish its own goals by encouraging and leading discussion, tracking ideas and progress, synthesizing ideas, and keeping the group on course by balancing preplanned goals with spontaneously occurring needs. Facilitation assists a group in discovering its own insights, learning, and needs.
Facilitator A person who makes it easier for learners to learn by attempting to discover what a learner is interested in knowing, and then determines the best way to make that information available to the learner by providing the knowledge, systems, or materials which enable the learner to perform a task more effectively. This is done by listening, asking questions, providing ideas, suggesting alternatives, and identifying possible resources.
Feedback Providing individuals or learners with information about the nature of an action and its result in relation to some criterion of acceptability.
Fishbowl A group process using a discussion group and an observer of the group.
Fixed Assets Also called long term assets, these are usually non-liquid assets that are integral to the organisation’s day-to-day business operations such as plants, equipment, furniture and property.
Fixed Costs The day-to-day cost of doing business that is pre-committed, such as salaries, insurance, lease expenses, utilities, etc.
Flip Chart An easel with large sheets of paper for presenting or collecting written lists or ideas, usually ISO A1 in size.
Formative Assessment The focus of discussion between trainer and learner, as a result of which both parties review their objectives or approach.
Front-End Analysis The “front end” phase of the design process in which the job is analyzed, tasks are selected for training, task performance measures are constructed, existing courses are reviewed, and the instructional setting tentatively determined.
Functional Grouping Organizing instruction such that tasks that relate to the same procedures or equipment are presented together.
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Games Discovery exercises where participants learn by experience. The rules for games should be clearly defined for all participates to understand. Competition should be controlled so that all participants feel like winners at the end.
Gaming A technique in which the student is presented situations involving choice and risks. The choices and the consequences resemble real-life situations, and the players are reinforced for various decisions. Gaming is typically an enjoyable learning method for the student.
Generalizations Responding in the same manner to several different stimuli.
Gestalt Study of human learning where understanding is based upon insight.
Gross Profit Revenues less cost of sales.
Group Trial Tryout of a training course on a representative sample of the target population to gather data on the effectiveness of instruction in regard to error rates, criterion test performance, and time to complete the course.
Group-Paced Instruction (Lockstep) Students progress as a group at a rate equal to that of the slowest student. There is no fixed minimum time for a unit.
Guidance Package A complete self-instructional package that guides the learner through various methods and media to achieve specific learning objectives and directs the learner activities in the performance of a task.
Guided Discussion Method A learning experience in which students participate in an instructor-controlled, interactive process of sharing information and experiences related to achieving an instructional objective.
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Handouts A written summary of the presentation that is distributed to the audience before, during or after the presentation. Handouts will reinforce important information, summarize action items for the audience to follow up on and supply supporting data you don’t want to clutter your visual aids.
Hands-On Student practice on actual equipment, simulators, or training aids.
Hard Skills Skills to perform where job requirements are well defined in terms of actions to be taken and expected outcomes.
Heuristic Routine A problem solving approach, not a direct step-by-step procedure, but a trial-and-error approach frequently involving the act of learning.
Human Capital The value of the sum of attitudes, skills, and knowledge and competencies of people in an organisation. Unlike structural capital, human capital is owned by the individuals who have it. It is the renewable part of intellectual capital and is the source of creativity and innovation.
Human Performance Improvement (HPI) A systematic process of discovering and analyzing human performance improvement gaps, planning for future improvements, designing cost-effective interventions to close performance gaps, implementing the interventions, and evaluating the financial and non financial results.
Human Resource Development (HRD) An organized learning experience, conducted in a definite time period, to increase the possibility of improving job performance and growth.
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Icebreaker A quick game or exercise designed to get participants settled or mixing with each other.
Implementation Phase The fourth of the Instructional System Design phases. The instruction is delivered to the learners during this phase.
Income Statement Also called Profit & Loss statement or P&L, a statement of revenues and expenses.
Inductive Design An instructional design where examples are presented and then followed by the rule.
Instruction The delivery of information to enable learning. The process by which knowledge and skills are transferred to students. Instruction applies to both training and education.
Instructional Analysis The procedures applied to an instructional goal in order to identify the relevant skills and their subordinate skills and information required for a learner to achieve the goal.
Instructional Concept An initial estimate of what the instruction should do, and what it should look like.
Instructional Design The philosophy, methodology, and approach used to deliver information. Some courseware aspects include question strategy, level of interaction, reinforcement, and branching complexity.
Instructional Goals Clear statements of behaviour that learners are to demonstrate as a result of instruction.
Instructional Method A component of the instructional strategy defining a particular means for accomplishing the objective. For example a traditional instructor led instructional strategy may be accomplished using the lecture method, a Socratic lecture technique, and a defined step-by-step questioning procedure. Also called “method of instruction”.
Instructional Module A self-contained instructional unit that includes one or more learning objectives, appropriate learning materials and methods, and associated criterion-reference measures.
Instructional Setting The location and physical characteristics of the area in which instruction takes place. The setting can be in a classroom, a laboratory, a field, or workplace location. An example is: a clean, well lighted, temperature controlled classroom equipped with individual desks, chairs, and individual video monitors.
Instructional Step A portion of material to which the student makes a response. It is a stage in the instructional process that represents progress in the student’s mastery. A subject to be taught is broken down into frames, items, or segments (steps). It is assumed that students cannot take later steps in a given sequence before taking the earlier step and that each segment or item represents a step forward.
Instructional Strategy The approach used to present information in a manner that achieves learning. Approaches include tutorial, gaming, simulation, etc. Aspects of instructional strategies include the order of presentation, level of interaction, feedback, remediation, testing strategies, and the medium used to present the information.
Instructional Systems Design (ISD) A formal process for designing training, be it computer-based or traditional instructor-led training. The ISD process includes analysis, design, development, implementation, and evaluation. Also known as Systems Approach to Training (SAT).
Instructional Technology The use of technology (computers, compact disc, interactive media, modem, satellite, teleconferencing, etc.) to support learning.
Instructor The person who teaches, trains or instructs an individual or a group of people.
Intangible Assets Non-physical assets such as patents, trademarks, a customer base, brand recognition of your products, etc. This is also called goodwill.
Interaction The act or process of interacting. Mutual or reciprocal action or influence; as, the interaction of an individual and a product on each other.
Interactive Training An umbrella term that includes both computer-based and multimedia training.
Interim Summary A segment of instruction that reviews recent learning to reinforce prior information.


Situated near the inside of a body (groups supporting direct customer interactions), Relating to, or occurring within the confines of an organized structure, Related or belonging to or existing within the management process,
Internal Partnership Any relationship between leadership, managers, teams, or employees with a common purpose to achieve business objectives and serve customer needs.
Internet-Based Training Delivery of educational content via a Web browser over the internet or intranet. It provides links to learning resources outside of the course, such as references, email, bulletin boards, and discussion groups.
Intranet A company’s internal network which is based on Internet technology. It is accessed using a Web browser and is protected from unauthorized access by other Internet users via a firewall.
Introduction A major section of a lesson designed to establish a common ground between the presenter and students, to capture and hold attention, to outline the lesson and relate it to the overall course, to point out benefits to the student, and to lead the student into the body of the lesson; usually contains attention step, motivation step, and overview. A segment that provides a general statement of the course content, target population, why the student is studying the material, and appropriate motivation to gain the student’s attention.
Inventory Turnover A ratio for evaluating sales effectiveness. For a given accounting period divide total revenue for the product by the average retail value of the product inventory.
Involving Question A question asked to the audience to involve the group and learn what they are interested in learning about.
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Job What a person does at work to satisfy an employer’s needs and expectations in exchange for pay. A job consists of responsibilities, duties, and tasks that are defined and can be accomplished, measured, and rated. It is used as an employment tool for classifying work and for selecting employees.
Job Aid (Performance Aid) A device designed for use on the job and providing guidance on the performance of a specific task or skill. May be printed or on-line. Used in situations where it is not feasible or worthwhile to commit the procedure to memory before on-the-job activity. Often these are paper-based and posted on the wall in plain sight or in a small reference notebook. They can also be, decals, manuals, cards, etc.
Job Analysis Breaking down the complexity of a person’s job into logical parts such as duties and tasks. It identifies and organizes the knowledge, skills, and attitudes required to perform the job correctly. This is accomplished by gathering task activities and requirements by observation, interviews, or other recording systems.
Job Description A formal statement of duties, qualifications, and responsibilities associated with a job.
Job Enlargement An increase in the number of tasks that an employee performs. It is associated with the design of jobs to reduce employee dissatisfaction.
Job Enrichment An increase in the number of tasks that an employee performs and an increase in the control over those tasks. It is associated with the design of jobs and is an extension of job enlargement.
Just-In-Time Training (JITT): A method of providing training when it is needed.
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Knowledge Specific information required for the student to develop the skills and attitudes for effective accomplishment of the jobs, duties, and tasks.
Knowledge Level Summary A reiteration of key points of content in a knowledge-level lesson designed to enhance a learner’s ability to remember facts.
Knowledge Management Capturing, organizing, and storing knowledge and experiences of individual workers and groups within an organisation and making it available to others in the organisation.
Knowledge Mapping (Mind Maps) A learning method similar to outlining that consists of drawing out circles and connecting them with lines while writing words in the circles and on the lines.
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Lead-Off Question A question initiated by the presenter that is usually directed to a group of students at the beginning of a lesson or main point and designed to generate discussion.
Learner Centred Instruction An instructional process in which the content is determined by the students needs, the instructional materials are geared to the students abilities, and the instructional design makes the students active participants.
Learning A relatively permanent change in behavioural potentiality, that can be measured, that occurs as a result of reinforced practice; gaining knowledge, skills, or developing behaviour through study, instruction, or experience.
Learning Knowledge acquired by systematic study in any field.
Learning Activities Events intended to promote trainee learning.
Learning Analysis The analysis of each task or subject area to determine what the learner must do upon completion of training, how well the learner must be able to do it, and what skills and knowledge must be taught in order to meet the end-of-training requirement.
Learning Curve A curve reflecting the rate of improvement in performing a new task as a learner practices and uses her newly acquired skills.
Learning Decay A decrease of learned skills over a period of time. Decay can be retarded by the conduct of sustainment training.
Learning Hierarchy A graphic display of the relationships among learning objectives in which some learning objectives must be mastered before others can be learned.
Learning Management System (LMS) Infrastructure platform through which learning content is delivered and managed. A combination of software tools perform a variety of functions related to online and offline training administration and performance management.
Learning Object A reusable chunk of information that is media independent. Includes Reusable Information Objects (RIOs), educational objects, content objects, training components, nuggets, and chunks.
Learning Objective A statement of what the learners will be expected to do when they have completed a specified course of instruction. It prescribes the conditions, behaviour (action), and standard of task performance for the training setting.
Learning Organisation Continually learning new KSA’s (knowledge, skills, abilities or attitudes) and applying them to improve product or service quality.
Learning Package (Courseware) The media, either text, computer program, or CD-ROM, that contains the instructional content of the course.
Learning Portal Any Web site that offers learners or organisations consolidated access to learning and training resources from multiple sources.
Learning Step A sub-unit of a learning objective derived when the learning objective is analyzed into its component parts.
Learning Strategies The methods that students use to learn. This ranges from techniques for improved memory to better studying or test taking strategies.
Learning Style A composite of the cognitive, affective, and physiological factors that serve as relatively stable indicators of how a learner perceives, interacts with, and responds to the learning environment. Included in this definition are perceptual modalities, information processing styles, and personality patterns.
Learning Style Inventory – LSQ A test or questionnaire which compares an individuals preference against a given model – Honey & Mumford, Kolb etc
Learning Taxonomy (Bloom’s Hierarchy): A classification of cognitive, affective and psychomotor behaviors for the purposes of test design invented by Benjamin Bloom and his colleagues.
Lecture A one-way communication from the lecturer to the group.
Lesson A segment of instruction that contains a learning objective and information to be imparted to the student.
Lesson Plan A written guide for trainers plans in order to achieve the intended learning outcomes. It provides specific definition and direction on learning objectives, equipment, instructional media material requirements, and conduct of the training.
Licensing Agreement An agreement between two organisations allowing one to sell the other’s products or services and to use their name, sales literature, trademarks, copyrights, etc. in a limited manner.
Lickert Scale A way of generating a quantitative value (numerical) to a qualitative questionnaire (e.g. poor, fair, good, very good, excellent).
Lifelong Learning The concept of ‘continuous personal development’ through student centred (self-actualized) learning.
Linear A logical and incremental change
Liquidity The percentage of an organisation’s assets that can be quickly converted into cash.
Living Document A state based publication refined and improved over time under single topic or scope. A suitable revision or presentation of information which the reader knows will change over time, but provided in a complete package to be useable in its current state.
Long Term Assets Also called fixed assets, these are usually non-liquid assets that are integral to the organisation’s day to day business operations such as plants, equipment, furniture and real estate.
Long Term Liabilities All debts that are not current liabilities, that is, debts that are not due until at least one calendar year in the future.
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Management The act, manner, or practice of managing; handling, supervision, or control: management of a crisis; management of front line workers. The person or persons who control or direct a business or other organisation. Skill in managing; executive ability.
Market Life Cycle The period of time that a substantial segment of the buying public is interested in purchasing a given product or service form.
Market Penetration Pricing Strategy If near term income is not critical and rapid market penetration for eventual market control is desired, then you set your prices very low.
Market Share The percentage of the total sales (from all sources) of a service or product represented by the sales made by your organisation. i.e. your sales divided by total sales
Mastery Meeting all of the specified requirements for a specific performance.
Material Goods Normally raw or processed materials such as coal or steel that will become part of the purchaser’s end product.
Measurement A tool used to provide feedback to the learner and the trainer to determine where the learner is in relation to the ultimate goal or objective.
Media The means by which material is presented to learners; e.g. film, slides, computers, etc.
Meta Skills Cognitive strategies that an individual applies to the processing of new information in a novel situation (a scenario not previously experienced). These skills include chunking or organizing new information, recalling relevant schemas, adding the new information to the old schemas, and creating new schemas.
Mind Mapping Technique invented by Tony Buzan following research on note taking procedures which proved that if a learner writes down own key words then retention was maximized.
Model (A representation of a process or system that show the most important variables in the system in such a way that analysis of the model leads to insights into the system.
Modeling The process of observing and mapping the successful behaviours of other people.
Module A stand-alone unit that is designed to satisfy one or more learning objectives.
Motivation A learning principle that says participants learn best when they are motivated. The material must be meaningful and worthwhile to the participant not only to the trainer.
Motivational Device A design element that causes and sustains interest or regulates activity for the purpose of causing the student to perform in a desired way.
Multicultural Mixed races, nationalities or cultures.
Multimedia Information in different formats including text, graphics, sound, video and animation to support computer-based applications.
Multimedia Training An instructional system that incorporates all or various instructional methods and media. It describes any application that uses multiple media (graphics, text, animation, audio, video), but multimedia is primarily thought of as any application that uses high-bandwidth media (audio and video) and is most often delivered on CD-ROM.
Multiple-Sense Learning A learning principle that says that learning is far more effective if the participants use more than one of their five senses.
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Needs There are two kinds of needs when training a group: 1) What the group thinks they need, and 2) What the trainer thought the group needed. It is important to resolve any conflicts before beginning the training.
Needs Analysis A method used to determine training needs by reviewing work tasks, identifying performance factors and objectives, and defining training objectives and recommendations.
Net Profit Total revenues less total expenses.
Net Worth Assets minus liabilities.
Networking Getting to know other participants and learning from them.
Norm-Referenced Measurement The process of determining a student’s achievement in relation to other students.
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Objective A statement communicating the specific goals to be achieved.
Objectivity In testing, the elimination of subjective bias by limiting choices to fixed alternatives.
Observer Someone who watches a group process and gives feedback on it.
On-Site Sales Method Selling directly to the end user using a sales force that calls on the prospect at their home or place of business.
On-The-Job-Training (OJT) Formal training for learning the skills and knowledge to perform a job that takes place in the actual work environment.
Open-Ended Test Item (Open-Ended Response) A question that can be answered in a variety of ways.
Over Learning Practice beyond what is required for retention. Also called over training.
Overhead Projector Electronic projector that projects overhead transparency images onto a wall or screen.
Overhead Transparency Sheet of transparent film with information written on it. It is used with an overhead projector.
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Participant A person attending a training program or involved in any group process.
Participative Design A process that refers to all the participation of all the functional areas of the organisation in the training design activity. The intent is to enhance the design with the input of all the key stakeholders. Such a process should ensure that the final outcome of the design meets the needs of the stakeholders.
Partnership Involving close cooperation between parties having specified and joint rights and responsibilities. Two or more groups joined together by mutual agreement for a specific desired result.
Parts/Sub Assembly Goods Products that will normally become a part of the purchaser’s end product. Examples are screws, bolts, transistors, printed circuits, electric motors, forgings, castings, etc.
Passive Learning Learning where no feedback is provided to a user’s response.
Perceptual Modality Learning style that refers to the primary way our bodies take in and perceive information; visual, auditory, kinesthetic, and tactile (VAK).
Performance The accomplishment of a task in accordance with a set standard of completeness and accuracy.
Performance Aid See job aid.
Performance Analysis It is the process by which professional’s partner with clients to identify and respond to opportunities and problems, and through study of individuals and the organisation, to determine an appropriate cross-functional solution system. Performance analysis is a systematic and systemic approach to engaging with the client. It is the process by which we determine when and how to use education and information resources.
Performance Consultant A role which is responsible for identifying and addressing the performance needs of people in an organisation.
Performance Criteria/Standard Part of a learning objective that describes the observable learner behavior (or the product of that behavior) that is acceptable as proof that learning has occurred.
Performance Deficiency The inability of a unit or individual to perform the required tasks to the established standard.
Performance Gap The delta between desired and actual performance.
Performance Improvement A systematic process of discovering and analyzing human performance improvement gaps, planning for future improvements in human performance, designing and developing cost-effective and ethically-justifiable interventions to close performance gaps, implementing the interventions, and evaluating the financial and non financial results.
Performance Measures The actions that can be objectively observed and measured to determine if a task performer has performed the task to the prescribed standard.
Performance Objective A statement of the conditions, learner’s behaviour (action), and standard. A criterion for prescribing the desired learner performance. This is a generic term and may be either a criterion objective or an enabling objective.
Performance Technology Technologies designed to enhance human performance and capabilities in the workplace. Also referred to as human performance technology, it is a systematic process of integrating practices from a vast breadth of fields such as instructional technology, organisational development, motivation, feedback, human factors, and employee selection.
Performance-Based Instruction Instruction which develops learner performance proficiency via task-based learning objectives written with an action verb. Learners prove competency by actual performance of the objectives to the established standards.


Testing something before sending it to the target population. Questionnaires and examinations are normally piloted before they are used.
Pipeline The total time involved in training personnel once they are designated as students. This includes time traveling to the training activity, time awaiting instruction, time of actual training, time from termination of training until reporting back to the workplace; may include more than one training activity.
Point An objective or purpose to be reached or achieved, or one that is worth reaching or achieving. A single unit, as in counting, rating, or measuring.
Practical Exercise A technique used during a training session that permits students to acquire and practice the knowledge, skills, and attitudes necessary to successfully perform one or more training objectives.
Practice Repeated and systematic performance to gain proficiency using the psychomotor, cognitive, and affective skills, acquired in the training phase. Initial practice occurs while the student is acquiring skills; proficiency practice occurs at intervals after training so that the skills may be refreshed. Practice enables the student to perform the job proficiently.
Practice Effect The influence of previous experience in taking a test for the second time or more. Familiarity with directions, types of items, and questions when taking a test again usually helps the examinee to score higher. Practice effect is greatest when the time interval between the test and retest is short and when the same form is administered.
Presentation Methods Ways of delivering information to help promote learning. They include audio, video, CBT, EPSS, multimedia, online help, teleconferencing, interactive television, and others
Pro Forma Financial forms (invoices, P&L statements, balance sheets, etc.) based on future expectations.
Product Benefits Advertising A “product benefits” ad is designed to acquaint the prospect with the strengths of the product or service and the benefits resulting from those strengths.
Product Comparison Advertising A “product comparison” ad compares the features of your product or service with those of one or more competitive products or services with the intent of showing yours to be more feature rich than the competition.
Product Family Advertising A “product family” ad is designed to convince the prospect that they have a wide range of functionality to choose from today and after they buy they will not be locked into a single product or service environment in the future.
Production Capacity The volume of products or services that can be produced by an organisation using current resources.
Proficiency Ability to perform a specific behaviour (e.g., task, learning objective) to the established performance standard in order to demonstrate mastery of the behaviour.
Proficiency Training Training conducted to improve or maintain the capability of individuals and teams to perform in a specified manner. Training to develop and maintain a given level of skill in the individual or team performance of a particular task.
Profit Margin The total revenues less total expenses incurred
Profitability Strategy A series of specific actions taken to improve influencing factors that change profits certain period. These actions take into consideration “future market demands,” cost of goods, and other contributing elements that could change the cost per transaction.
Programmed Learning A procedure that provides information to the learner in small steps, guarantees immediate feedback concerning whether or not the material was learned properly and allows the learner the pace with which she can go through the material.
Project A specific, unique work effort that produces a change in the organisation. A project has dedicated resources, a specific start and end date, and one or more objectives, used to evaluate level of success.
Project Management “The art and science of planning, performing and successfully completing special ‘one time’ work efforts, better, faster and cheaper.” (Stacy Goff and Associates, 1993)
Project Plan A document that breaks the project down into specific activities, deliverables, responsibilities and timeframe’s. Different forms include Gantt Charts, Role/Responsibility Matrix, Work Breakdown Structure (WBS), etc.
Prompt A word or signal that initiates or guides behaviour; a cue.
Proprietary Technology Technology that is unique and legally owned by an organisation. The technology may be integral to the product or service being offered or it may be used in the production of the product or service.
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Quiz A short test administered by the instructor to measure achievement on material recently taught or on any small, newly completed unit of work.
Quotation Direct quotes from credible people or organisations to help support your training concept.
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Rapport A relation, especially one characterized by sympathetic understanding, emotional affinity, or mutual trust,
Recency A learning principle that tells us that the things that are learned last are those best remembered by the participants.
Reductionism A meaningful way to study complex subjects by dividing it up into smaller components.
Reinforcement Encouragement or praise given to participants to keep their interest or increase their motivation.
Relation A logical or natural association between two or more things; relevance of one to another; connection. The way in which one person or thing is connected with another: the relation of manager to employee.
Relationship The condition or fact of being related; connection or association. A particular type of connection existing between people related to or having dealings with each other.
Relevant A learning principle that tells us that all the training, information, training aids, case studies and other materials must be relevant and appropriate to the participant’s needs if they are going to be effective.
Remedial Loop An adjustive device that allows remedial instruction for learners.
Remediation Supplemental course materials to correct a learner’s understanding or to reinforce the learning objective.
Request For Proposal (RFP) A document submitted to consultants which requests a proposal to address a specific problem.
Response Any behavior that results from a stimulus or stimuli. In instruction, it designates a wide variety of behavior which may involve a single word, selection among alternatives (multiple choice), the solution of a complex problem, the manipulation of buttons or keys, etc.
Retained Earnings Profits retained by the organisation rather than disbursing to the shareholders. Retained earnings are used to improve the value of the organisation through development and /or promotional programs.
Rhetorical Question A question asked to the group with an obvious answer. This device is an excellent way to get the audience’s attention.
ROI Return on Investment, Net Profit divided by Net Worth. A financial ratio indicating the degree of profitability.
Role-Playing Acting out of specific situations in front of, or with, the group to demonstrate ways to handle specific situations or problems.
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Schema In learning psychology, the way in which a human processes, store and “recreates” information coming into the brain.
Segmented Training Modification of existing formal courses into discrete portions.
Self Teaching Packages Self instructional study units sent to the learner’s location.
Self-Directed Learning Participants take responsibility for their learning and learn-at-their-own-speed. Computer-based training is an excellent method for supporting this type of learning.
Self-Paced Learning Learning initiated and directed by the learner. The term is used by some organisations now to include computer-based, web-based and multimedia training.
Seminar Any meeting for exchanging information and holding discussions. Sometimes these are problem-solving sessions where the participants have similar needs or problems identified.
Sequencing Arranging the teaching points, teaching steps, and criterion steps into the most appropriate order for effective learning.
Sequential Training The ordering of training so that the learning of new or more complex skills/knowledge is built on and reinforces previously learned material.
Service/Product Mix This business, while involving both service and product, is distinct in that the quality of the service is often more important than the product received. Examples of this type of service would be: fast food, catering, telephone, etc.
Session Any single presentation that deals with one specific topic. It may last from a few minutes to a few days depending upon the subject.
Shaping The process of gradually changing a student’s behaviour until it conforms to the desired behaviour.
Shocking Statement This type of statement will help capture the audience’s attention and elevate their interest in the subject.
Simulation Any representation or imitation of reality. An instructional strategy used to teach problem solving, procedures, or operations by immersing learners in situations resembling reality.
Simulation An exercise designed to create a real-life atmosphere.
Sitting With Nellie Discredited form of training where the learner observes an expert performing the tasks.
Skill A complex sequence of practical activities, often to achieve a given output.
Skimming Pricing Strategy To generate quick cash and are not concerned for significant market penetration and control, then you set your prices very high.
Small Group Trial A try out of a training course on a representative sample of the student target population to gather data on the effectiveness of instruction in regard to error rates, criterion test performance, and time to complete the course. Also called trials or tryout, small group.
Sole Proprietorship An organisation that is owned by a single individual.
Standards A rule or principle that is used as a basis for judgment. A road map that provides guidance and direction to lead us to an established objective or goal.  Standards define the level of quality expected after an area or object has been cleaned. Standards represent the “measuring sticks” used in establishing productivity and performance guidelines.
Status Report A summary document which describes progress relating to accomplishment of a goals within the target time frame.
Stimulus Anything that provokes behavior. The event, situation, condition, signal, or cue to which a response must be made.
Stimulus Instruction The part of a discrimination-type situation that tells the learner how to work the exercise, or the stem to a discrimination type exercise.
Story board A series of pictures which support the action and content that will be contained in an audiovisual sequence.
Strategic Important or essential in relation to a plan of action: to recruit more… Highly important to an intended objective: The staff discussed strategic marketing factors.
Strategic Relations The mutual dealing or connections or communications among persons or groups in a manner important or essential to a plan of action.
Strategic Relationships An agreement between two or more organisations to conduct specified business processes in a joint manner. Usually related to technology development and/or marketing and distribution efforts.
Strategy The science and art of using all the resources of an organisation to execute approved plans as effective as possible, the science and art of business management as applied to the overall planning and conduct of large-scale operations, a plan of action resulting from strategy or intended to accomplish a specific objective.
Subject Matter Expert (SME) A person who can perform a job or a selected group of tasks to standards. Her experience and knowledge of the job designates her as a technical expert. She must know what is critical to the performance of the task and what is nice-to-know. She must have recent job experience, otherwise, her knowledge of the task may be outdated by new procedures or equipment.
Suggestopedia Methodology developed by Georgi Lozanov. Sometimes called Super Learning or Accelerated Learning. A philosophy that uses learners’ holistic natural talents to provide them the highest probability of maximizing their learning, retention, and performance.
Survey A process of gathering information to determine whether or not there is a training need. They are often used to collect information related to a Training Needs Analysis.
System Approach To Training (SAT) See Instructional Systems Design (ISD).
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Tabletop Analysis Using a facilitator, a small group of (3-10) subject matter experts convene to identify the various tasks to be performed. Through brainstorming and consensus building, the team develops a sequential list of tasks.
Target Population The total collection of a population that is scheduled to enter a given instructional program.
Task The smallest essential part of a job. Has an identifiable start and end point and results in a measurable accomplishment or product.
Task Analysis Involves the systematic process of identifying specific tasks to be trained; and a detailed analysis of each of those tasks. It facilitates training program design by providing a description of the fundamental elements of a job.
Task Selection Model A model used to apply statistically valid task selection models to identify critical individual tasks.
Teaching Point The smallest increment of information to which a learner may be expected to respond; a statement of fact or a procedural step in the performance of a task; the precise information you want a learner to know or respond to.
Team Building A training program designed to assist a group of people to work together as a team while they are learning.
Terminal Behaviour The behaviour which the learner is to demonstrate after the learning experience.
Test A device or technique used to measure the performance, skill level, or knowledge of a learner on a specific subject matter. It usually involves quantification of results — a number that represents an ability or characteristic of the person being tested.
Test A way of determining a participant’s level of knowledge, skill, expertise or behaviour in a given area.
Test Fidelity The degree to which the test resembles the actual task performed. The closer the resemblance, the higher the fidelity of the test.
Test Item Analysis The process of evaluating single test items by any of several methods. This usually involves the determination of how well an individual item separates examinees, its relative difficulty value, and its correlation with some criterion of measurement.
Topic The basic organisational unit of instruction covering one or more closely related learning objectives.
Topical Outline An outline of the topics to be included in the instructor guide. It provides course learning objectives, a listing of part, section, and topic titles and statements of rationale to explain or justify the training. It is used by the curriculum designer to develop the instructor guides.
Trademark The name of a product or service that has been legally registered as the property of an organisation.
Train To make proficient by instruction and repeated practice, as in some art, profession or work. To discipline or instruct as in the performance of tasks. To prepare someone to accomplish an objective, task or job.
Trainer A person who directs the growth of learners by helping them become qualified or proficient in a skill or task. Uses coaching, instructing, and facilitating techniques to accomplish the learning objectives.
Training Planned learning to develop needed skills, knowledge, and ability to improve performance in one’s current job.
Training Aid An item to enhance training. May include charts, slides, and schematics. Helps to engage visual, auditory and kinesthetic senses.
Training Concept A summary describing how the required training is to be accomplished in terms of type of training, presentation environment, presentation techniques, presentation media, pipeline, location, and other considerations.
Training Evaluation Level 5 (ROI) Jack Phillips measures training evaluation at Level 5 = return on investment (ROI) which compares the benefits (financial and other) of the training intervention compared with the cost of the intervention.
Training Evaluation Levels 1 – 4


Kirkpatrick’s says that the effectiveness of a training intervention can be evaluated at four different levels.* Level 1 = Reaction/ satisfaction

* Level 2 = Learning

* Level 3 = Application of learning on the job

* Level 4 = Results. How did the training intervention impact actual business results (both quantitative and qualitative)?

Training Need The difference between what the employee can do now and what they are required to do in order to carry out their job effectively and efficiently.
Training Needs Analysis A process to determine what people need to learn and how training may help. The result of the analysis is training needs report which identifies prioritized training/learning needs and interventions needed to reduce key performance gaps.
Transfer Of Training The ability of persons to effectively apply to the job the knowledge and skills they gain in dissimilar learning situation. Also, the learning in one situation that facilitates learning (and therefore performance) in subsequent similar situations.
Tutorial An instructional programme that presents new information to the student efficiently and provides practice exercises based on that information. A lesson design used to teach an entire concept. Interactive instruction that asks questions based on the information presented, requests student responses, and evaluates student responses. It is self-paced, accommodates a variety of users, and generally involves some questioning, branching, and options for review.
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Validation A process of testing the effectiveness of instruction by administering the criterion test immediately after the instruction. Also, a process through which a course is administered and revised until learners effectively attains the base line objectives.
Validity The degree to which a test measures what it is intended to measure. Although there are several types of validity and different classification schemes for describing validity there are two major types of validity that test developers must be concerned with, they are content-related and criterion-related validity.
Values Answers the question, what is important to the group? Different organisations have different value systems. Even different departments within an organisation can have different values.
Varied Repetition Design elements that repeat a segment of a lesson differently to enhance learning.
Vendor An external supplier or consultant who provides a product or service for a fee.
Vertical Integration The potential within an organisation to incorporate all aspects of management, production, sales and distribution into their business operations. In theory, the greater the vertical integration, the less vulnerable an organisation is to outside forces.
Vestibule Training A variant of job rotation in which a separate work area is set up for a learner so that the actual work situation does not pressure the learner, (e.g. cockpit simulator).
Video Clip A short section of video to visually help the participants learn.
Visual Aids Supportive visual information used to enhance learning. The purpose of visual aids is to arouse and maintain interest, simplify instruction, accelerate learning and improve aid retention.
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Web Based Instruction (WBI) Web-based Instruction is delivered over public or private computer networks and displayed by a Web browser.
Web-Based Training (WBT) Sometimes referred to as Internet- or Intranet-based training, Web-based training (WBT) is a popular term for instruction that is delivered over the Internet or a company’s intranet.
Whiteboards A smooth white-surfaced board that can be written on with a special whiteboard marker.
Work Sample The use of number of random samples to determine the frequency with which certain activities are performed. Performance on a work sample is frequently used as a criterion against which prediction devices in evaluation are validated.
Workbook A handout that contains procedures and exercises designed to assist the learner in achieving the learning objectives.
Worker Efficiency A measure (usually computed as a percentage) of worker performance that compares the standard time allowed to complete a task to the actual worker time to complete it.
Working Capital The cash available to an organisation for day-to-day operations.
Workshop Training programme where the participants learn by doing and interacting


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