What Makes a Good Course?

What makes a good course? How to learn effectively? Why do courses fail?  Welcome to the latest news from TalkIT. This month’s is about developer training


What Makes a Good Course? Stimulate and Inspire Avoid Overwhelm Build Skills Can You Solve This Coding Problem? Other Bits These thoughts are based on my  years of designing and delivering courses. Take a look at our full list of courses. This follows from the 2014 Newsletter on how to be a good programmer.

What Makes a Good Course?

There is lots of choice now available in how we learn. We can take the DIY approach; search it out on Google or do an e-learning course.Course But we are going to look at traditional classroom training. This is how it works. Put a bunch of people in a room for 2 to 5 days. Then provide a trainer and computers. The course will cover features of a technology, say C#.Net. Here the outline for our C# course. The objectives are that delegates understand these and become competent using them. To provide structure, the course is split into modules, rather like chapters in book. Each module goes into certain features. The delivery consists of presentations, demonstrations and exercises. The exercises allow delegates to do something practical that consolidates learning. The delivery is pitched at a certain level. This depends on the delegates’ background experience. The required experience is described in the course’s prerequisites.

Stimulate and Inspire

A good course skilfully blends theory and practice. It stimulates and inspires. It also provides multiple modalities for learning; listening, questioning, doing stuff …inspire Technical training often works with complex material, but it makes this manageable. It does this by concentrating on one feature at a time; by single tasking. The material can be vast, but the course focuses on the important features. It also identifies what can be safely ignored. A clear road map is provided. The exercises allow delegates to prove to themselves they can really do it, to build their confidence. They learn to build real life software step by step. If they get lost, they can compare their efforts against the model application.

Avoid Overwhelm

The theory explains the underlying principles. It is then easier to slot new data into place. This avoids being overwhelmed with information. It makes it easier to apply the knowledge, to put it into a realistic context.overwhelm The theory bit is delivered using presentations and demonstrations. These explain how features can solve common problems. Simple is best. I recently attended 5 day course where over 300 slides were shown. Many slides contained dense code snippets. Sure, the structure and content of a course can be provided by the slide pack. But these are best used to only illustrate the presentations. That is how we design TalkIT’s courses.

Build Skills

We learn to code by doing it. Put the theory into practice by creating or enhancing a real application. The instructions are in the course notes. Each exercise builds skills on specific features.skills The completed applications can then be taken away and used as template for future development. Or do the exercises again after course at your own pace. When these elements come together, then lots can be learnt in a short time. And it can be fun!

Can you solve this coding problem?Problem

Practice you C# skills. Let’s look at Lambda expressions. What is the output from these statements?

Func<int, bool> f = n => n < 5;
bool isSmall = f(2);
Func<int, bool> g = n => n > 5;
bool isBig = g(5);

Can you add code snippets to demonstrate Lambda expressions at the bottom of this blog? And exactly what type of object is a Func<T>? More in our online C# course

Other Bits

New online courses in C++ and Java have been added to the TalkIT site recently. Take an advanced look at what is in the courses. C++ Java In October we will publish an additional Java tutorial. This teaches you Java by building a complete game application. TalkIT has been very active on social media recently. We have been posting on coding, new gadgets and IT humour. Why don’t you connect with us on Twitter or FaceBook? You can follow all the latest news and let us know what you think.bits @NowTalkIT    Twitter FaceBook  NowTalkIT   TalkIT @NowTalkIT Jun 30 What programmers actually do? #coding #humour #java #csharp #meme #javascript #html5 #python #coding pic.twitter.com/NG47lgTTXC TalkIT @NowTalkIT Jun 30 Coding #Quiz. Solve 5 #puzzles and win a Prize! talk-it.biz/2015/06/coding… #csharp #programming #javascript #html5 pic.twitter.com/HEJEkp6wUM TalkIT @NowTalkIT Jun 28 What makes a good programmer? talk-it.biz/2014/01/januar… #programmer #coding #csharp #cplusplus #javascript #python pic.twitter.com/p6vTGBzqt9 TalkIT @NowTalkIT Jun 28 Do you value internet more than water? #humour #Codingtutorials talk-it.biz #javascript #html5 #java #c pic.twitter.com/aUaVVdlJtC TalkIT @NowTalkIT Jun 25 I want to learn programming. Where do I start? talk-it.biz/where-to-start/ #javascript #html5 #csharp #java #learncoding pic.twitter.com/y0qmqAs370 TalkIT @NowTalkIT Jun 25 Coding puzzle. What is the outcome? Find more #puzzles talk-it.biz/2015/04/6-codi#csharp #coding #javascript #html5 #c pic.twitter.com/6Cd3d3rvOj TalkIT @NowTalkIT Jun 24 What programmers actually do? Become a programmer today. talk-it.biz/where-to-start/ #python #csharp #html5 #javascript #c pic.twitter.com/tIaJahG3fK TalkIT @NowTalkIT Jun 20 Coding humour. Learn C++ talk-it.biz/c-marketing-pa… #cplusplus #coding #humour #c #learnc #csharp pic.twitter.com/Dh17ADXoiU TalkIT @NowTalkIT Jun 20 Keep Calm and Learn Programming. Free trial! talk-it.biz/training/tutor… #javascript #html5 #csharp #learnprogramming pic.twitter.com/WUgcg4ARHM  

 Photos www.freedigitalphotos.net/

David Ringsell MCPD 2015 ©


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