Please find below some general guidance on IT training, including possible teething problems to anticipate, notes on engaging clients effectively and a checklist to reflect upon after lessons.
Your client may be brimming with confidence and clear about what it is they are seeking to achieve, but they may also be initially reluctant to participate because they are 'afraid' of the computers or fearful of looking silly. Your role is to reassure them that computers are not something to be afraid of and that it doesn't matter if mistakes are made, the whole purpose of the IT lesson is to learn.
When working with beginners in particular, it is worth being aware of the following possible issues:
Bear in mind that clients are more likely to engage when:
When you are starting an activity and seeking to engage the client, you could try a brief introduction to your planned activity and then either direct the client to the activity.
If you're clients are going to be practising beyond your lesson, spend time discussing how to tackle specific tasks and answering any questions the client might raise. To get an idea of feedback on how your client feels lessons are progressing ask "light touch" questions, e.g.:
Where a client is trying to fulfil a particular objective, avoid doing the work (e.g. writing the code) for them, or the point of the exercise is removed. Try giving broad hints or outlining key steps so they understand how to do something rather than just doing it for them and having them watch in a confused daze.
As you work with more clients you may wish to start considering what worked / what didn't, in addition to any feedback First Tutors: I.T. receives from clients directly. Below is some "food for thought" to help you in the process.
|How well did I .....?||Very Well||Satisfactory||Could Be Better|
|Clarify what the client wanted to learn|
|Prepare for the session|
|Get the session underway (establish aims, etc)|
|Ask questions and prompt the client|
|Handle the client's comments and questions|
|Respond to the client as an individual|
|Keep the focus on the main topic|
|Help sustain client interest|
|Provide help when clients encountered difficulties|
|Ensure key points were drawn out|
|Bring things to a close|
If you are new to IT training you are welcome to register with First Tutors: I.T. to attract potential clients.
During the registration process you will be asked to declare which subjects you wish to teach, how much you will charge and to tell prospective clients about your approach and experience.
Our advice to new IT trainers would be to think carefully about which specialisms you choose to offer and the level at which you feel you can teach comfortably. To increase enquiries for IT trainers, we invite clients to give feedback on a trainer so that the trainer benefits from positive feedback. Obviously, if you are teaching a subject you are not terribly confident in, this feedback may not go so well! So think broadly about what your strengths are and build your reputation on that.
Your first session is essential in giving the right impression to your client. But more important is getting this far. When you are matched with your first client, follow up quickly in arranging a lesson. Client are often anxious when seeking a trainer as they are seeking to solve a problem, so will look to commence lessons as soon as possible. Not keeping an appointment, showing up late or arriving ill-prepared are all ways to lose a client before you've started so avoid these mistakes!
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