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AFRO-NETS> Training in Africa: Best Practices, Lessons Learned and Future Directions
- Subject: AFRO-NETS> Training in Africa: Best Practices, Lessons Learned and Future Directions
- From: Rick Sullivan <email@example.com>
- Date: Mon, 7 Oct 2002 02:36:57 -0400 (EDT)
Training in Africa: Best Practices, Lessons Learned and Future Directions
7-9 May 2003
Request for Presentations
A conference entitled Training in Africa: Best Practices, Lessons
Learned and Future Directions will be held in Nairobi, Kenya from 7-9
May 2003. The focus of the conference will be to examine best training
practices used in international healthcare settings, with particular
emphasis on family planning and reproductive health in Africa. In addi-
tion, training practices that have been employed successfully in sec-
tors other than healthcare will be examined and discussed for their ap-
plicability to reproductive health programs. The conference is being
organized by the JHPIEGO Corporation?s Training in Reproductive Health
project in collaboration with the Office of Population and Reproductive
Health of the United States Agency for International Development
(USAID) and a number of USAID Cooperating Agencies.
The purpose of this Request for Presentations (RFP) is to solicit pro-
posals for conference presentations for the concurrent 90-minute ses-
Purpose of the Conference
Training is one of the primary interventions for improving the perform-
ance of healthcare workers in Africa. Just what do we know about effec-
tive training? We know that training occurs as part of most activities
to strengthen healthcare systems and improve the quality of services.
We know that training comes in many sizes and shapes including instruc-
tor-led, distance learning, technology-assisted learning and on-the-job
training. We know that training is applied across a broad range of con-
tent areas including management, quality assurance, logistics, commu-
nity education, and clinical. So how do we know effective training when
we see it? What practices, processes and approaches work best in low-
The goal of this conference is to examine training practices identified
as best based on objective data, to share lessons learned from imple-
menting training in a variety of settings, and to look at the horizon
to see what the future holds for training in Africa.
During the 3-day conference we will have a number of skill-building
workshops, general session speakers and approximately 40 concurrent
session speakers for an audience of about 150-200. Concurrent sessions
will be designed for 25-30 conference attendees each and will be 90
minutes in length. The skill-building workshops will be held on the
first day of the conference, will be 3-hours in length and will focus
on key training skills.
This conference is designed for individuals who have responsibilities
for the programming, design, delivery and evaluation of training inter-
ventions to improve worker performance, with a focus on family planning
and reproductive health in Africa. Conference attendees may include
trainers, instructional designers, materials developers, facilitators,
program managers and evaluators.
Note that English is the official language of the conference and that
translation services will not be available.
The concurrent session descriptions will indicate both the type of
presentation and the stage of the training process. This information
will appear in the handout book and will help conference attendees to
select sessions to attend. Concurrent sessions will feature a best
practice, lesson learned or future direction. The proposal will indi-
cate if presenters are presenting a best practice, lesson learned or
future direction as defined here.
Best Practices Training practices that have been shown to produce su-
perior results; are selected by a systematic process; and are judged as
exemplary, good or successfully demonstrated. Examples might include:
* As a result of using an individualized learning approach approach,
there is evidence of improved provider performance in providing PAC
* As a result of distance learning and follow-up coaching at the job
site, there have been improved client-provider interactions.
* Schools using a competency-based approach to learning are producing
students with increased knowledge and skills.
Note in the previous examples that the focus is on the training aspect
and NOT on the content area. We are looking for evidence that a spe-
cific training approach produced measurable results by a systematic re-
view of data. So presenters indicating that their presentation is a
best practice will be expected to have clear evidence that this is the
Lessons Learned Crosscutting observations and conclusions that apply
to a specific practice. Lessons are drawn from experiences with spe-
cific training practices, processes and methods. Evidence supporting
the lesson is clear and objective. These lessons encompass both posi-
tive and negative experiences. Examples might include:
* Based on experience in training trainers, this approach produces
trainers capable of delivering interactive and participatory clinical
* Using the transfer of learning process we have seen an increase in
the support of supervisors for workers returning from training
Future Directions Trends, technology, changes in healthcare delivery
systems and other factors that will shape the future of training. Exam-
ples might include:
* Distance learning approaches in Africa.
* The use of CD-ROM technology to deliver training in Africa.
Concurrent sessions will also be based on various aspects of the train-
ing process. Following are areas of training with brief definitions.
Proposals will indicate which area is to be addressed by a presenta-
tion. In some sessions, the presenter may be focusing on more than one
Design This stage includes the use of information from performance
needs assessments to identify the need for training and to develop
learning goals and objectives, select learning methods (e.g., class-
room-based, distance learning, structured on-the-job training, technol-
ogy-assisted learning), create training schedules, etc. This also in-
cludes development and testing of the training materials.
Delivery This is when the training course or intervention is con-
Evaluation Determining how learners felt about the training, whether
they reached the objectives, how content is applied on the job after
training, and what impact it had on the situation it was designed to
Transfer of Learning Practices to help ensure that the knowledge and
skills acquired during training result in improved job performance af-
ter training. Transfer of learning involves the learner, learner?s su-
pervisor and trainer through activities conducted before, during and
Trainer Development Essential for the development of a sustainable
training system is the development of competent trainers who can con-
tinue to implement training as external support decreases.
Programming Training Interventions Approaches used by program staff
to ensure that the previous areas of training are planned, funded and
carried out in the field.
Concurrent Session Proposal Format
Your proposal should include the information listed in the 10 items be-
low. For each item, there is a brief explanation of the information to
be included. Your proposal should be no longer than three (3) pages and
should include only these 10 items.
* Presentation Title:
Title of the concurrent session presentation should be no longer than
10 words. The title should reflect the content of your presentation and
capture the interest of the participants at the same time.
Provide the name, title, address, phone, fax and e-mail information for
* Best Practice, Lesson Learned or Future Direction:
Indicate into which category your presentation fits. Please select only
one category. Note that preference will be given to presentations from
* Stage of the Training Process:
Indicate into which of the following stage(s) your presentation fits.
The stages include design, delivery, evaluation, transfer of learning,
trainer development and programming training interventions. Presenta-
tions may relate to more than one stage.
* Session Focus:
In no more than 100 words, describe the focus of your presentation.
Note that this description will be essential for the review team as
they select presentations. Also, if your presentation is accepted, this
description will be used in the conference program; participants will
read this description to decide if they want to attend the session.
* Learning Objectives:
Provide three objectives describing what the participant will learn in
Briefly describe the methods you will use to deliver your presentation.
Note that concurrent sessions are 90-minutes in length. Presenters are
strongly encouraged to allow up to 30 minutes of interaction during
their presentations. Participants will appreciate the opportunity to
share, discuss and interact with the presenters.
Describe the audio-visuals you will be using during your presentation.
Note that each room will be equipped with a flipchart, screen and com-
puter projection unit. Presenters are asked to provide their own laptop
computer (if you will require a laptop, please indicate). Presenters
are asked to use a PowerPoint presentation so that handouts can be dis-
tributed and a conference CD-ROM developed for distribution following
Provide a brief (one paragraph) biography describing the background and
previous speaking experience of each presenter. If you presentation is
accepted, your biography will be available to the conference partici-
pants so that they have some information about who is delivering each
List three individuals who are familiar with your ability to present on
your proposed topic. Please provide their full contact information
(name, address, phone, fax and e-mail) so that the review team will be
able to contact them. If there is more than one presenter, provide ref-
erences only for the primary or lead presenter.
Please note the following regarding the proposal submission, review,
acceptance and development process.
* Proposals are due by 17 January 2003.
* The proposal (in MS Word) is to be sent to:
1615 Thames Street
Baltimore, MD 21231-3492, USA
* Proposals are to be sent by e-mail attachment or placed on a diskette
and sent in the mail. Proposals are not to be faxed.
* The proposals will be reviewed and presenters notified by 14 February
* Presenters will then receive information regarding the format of
their PowerPoint presentations and/or handouts. All presentation mate-
rials will be included on a CD-ROM to be distributed following the con-
ference. Presenters will also receive information about the hotel, con-
ference registration, etc.
* Presenters will be responsible for their own expenses (travel, per
* Presenters will be asked to submit their PowerPoint presentation and
any supporting handouts for duplication by 1 April 2003. This will al-
low time for copies of handouts for the participants to be prepared and
bound before the conference. The planning team recognizes that submit-
ting these items in advance may create some challenges; however, we be-
lieve that participants will greatly appreciate receiving all of the
handouts at registration. Presenters failing to submit their materials
by this date may be asked to not present at the conference.
* Reminders of key dates:
17 January: Proposals due
14 February: Presenters notified
01 April: PowerPoint presentations and handouts due
7-9 May: The Conference!!
If you have questions regarding the proposal or process, please contact
Director of Learning and Performance Support
1615 Thames Street
Baltimore, MD 21231-3492
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