One of the things that we are noticing now is the proliferation of free training around hot topics. For example, Neurodiversity is now being talked about by everyone and, on the surface of it, this is great because it is helping to generate interest and awareness. However, what is not so great is the quality and perspectives of some of what is being shared - with us seeing ungrounded non-research-based opinions being delivered as ‘training!’.
In addition this, 'lived experience' is increasingly being held up as the gold standard for delivering training around a particular subject but I'd ask...
'When we go to see a doctor for help do we expect them to have 'lived experience' of our condition?'
In this situation what we are looking for, and expect, is confidence in the fact that they are suitably qualified and have an understanding of the subject to equip them in providing us with accurate, useful information and equipped to guide us towards further investigation and support if required.
We believe this is true for training as well.
Whilst 'lived experience' is extremely valuable, the important thing is that the individual delivering the training understands the topic, has researched it well and is able to deliver comprehensive, accurate information in a way that helps their audience move forward with their understanding - rather than sharing from a purely from a personal, though sometimes valuable, perspective!
We would say, when you looking for training providers it can be useful to find those who offer accredited training - and look at their 'track record'.
So, what does accredited training bring you?
Credibility and assurance
Training that has been constructed and accredited means that it has stepped through several quality assurance hoops. These are designed to make sure that the training has met the goals that it has set out to meet. This should give you confidence that the time you spend is going to be worthwhile and useful.
Accredited training courses often come with qualifications these give you an opportunity to show your learning and to build networks with like-minded individuals who have a similar level of understanding.
With accreditation comes oversight which means there is a route of accountability around the quality of what is been delivered. It also means that there is a responsibility on the training provider to make sure what has been delivered is still up-to-date and continues to meet the needs set out.
Accredited training looks at the subject from more than one perspective examining the available body of evidence. It still gives insight from individual perspectives but what is key here is the macro picture of what is going on as this will enable you to understand the subject better and be able to make your own decisions about how you apply what you are learning.
It's not just about the content!
The final element to consider is the accessibility of the training, are learners being catered for, is delivery appropriate to their needs. This is often a requirement of accredited training programs, and I would encourage you to always ask how the training programme will cater to different learning preferences.
If you are seeking training in a particular area, I would encourage you to assess what it is going to give you – and take a look beyond the ticket price of the training. Something may seem like excellent value on the surface because it is free but when you look at what is included it may not offer you what you are expecting. The other, and probably the most important thing, to consider is that your time has a value and if you choose to spend it somewhere that does not give you the benefits you expect In addition to this, there may be added costs and implications in the future for you and your organisation if training is not accurate, comprehensive and useful.
If you would like to find out more about accredited neurodiversity-related training and what it can do for your organisation, please get in contact.
Nathan Whitbread (The Neurodivergent Coach)
Associate - Right Resources Limited