Application and Transfer

In the era of accountability staff developers of adult learners must design adult learning experiences which lead to application and transfer of learning to assure results in the work setting. In the Introductory Module we learned about this Paradigm Shift.

The Florida Department of Education Professional Development System Protocol System Standards indicate Follow-up and Feedback are important to effective staff development. Protocol standards relate to four areas of follow up:

  • Transfer to Students -the extent to which participants use the knowledge and skills learned in training to instruct students in classrooms
  • Coaching and Mentoring -the extent to which training incorporates coaching and mentoring activities to assure the application of knowledge and skills learned in the training
  • Web-Based Resources and Assistance -the extent to which administrators and teachers are provided web-based resources, assistance, and discussion groups related to training completed
  • Follow Up Coordination -the extent to which follow-up services are coordinated across multiple schools receiving training.

Accordingly, the Broward County HRD Department Quality Review process requires Follow-Up and Feedback be a part of the design process.  

The research of Joyce and Showers is convincing in helping designers recognize the importance of follow up activities.   Click on the link to the Broward County Schools HRD web page and review the research and its implications for designers.

Begin your thinking as a designer about the design product you are preparing and how you might answer the following guiding questions from the Quality Review process.

  • How will participants reflect on their learning experience during the event?
  • How will the participant be coached during the implementation of new learning?
  • What type of job-embedded samples will be collected to demonstrate implementation of new learning?
  • Will there be intervals of time between sessions? (i.e. time to practice new learning on the job?)

The Broward HRD Department provides designers with a few examples of methods the designer may use in providing follow up.

Management Reinforcement is the process by which supervisors of the adult learners being trained reinforce the content that has been learned during on-the-job interactions. The supervisor may use a variety of strategies including: informal feedback or performance discussions, verbal or written recognition of the use of new knowledge and skills, or documenting the use of the knowledge and skills learned as part of the performance evaluation process.  

The Broward County Schools HRD Department has created the Behavior Implementation Results Tool which is designed to assist with the documentation of behavior change and the analysis of results for individual adult learners.

Behavior Implementation Results Tool

This tool assists you in documenting behavior change of the individual and analyzing results against desired outcomes.
Event Title:
Participants Name:

Baseline Due Date:

Before Implementation Due Date:
After Early Implementation Due Date:
Reflection on Staff Development Due Date:
Facilitator's Name:
Baseline: What behaviors do you demonstrate at your job site that relate to the specific objectives? Date
Prior to Implementation: What behaviors do you demonstrate at your job site in relation to these specific objectives? Please share how your behaviors might impact your job performance. Date
After Early: Reflect on your behaviors after implementation. Please share how your behaviors impacted your job performance. Date
Reflection: Reflect on your behaviors after the closing date of your staff development. Please share how your behaviors impacted your job performance. Date
Participants' Comments:   Date
Supervisor's Feedback:   Date

To view the complete Behavior Implementation Results Tool, go to


Review the Business Event Type Review Rubric on line to understand what is required for component approval in the area of feedback and follow-up.

Consider how feedback opportunities for the learner will be a part of the design for your design product.

There is an old adage that "feedback is the breakfast of champions." Providing feedback is something that many are not comfortable with or they may lack the skills to do it effectively.

Adult learners can benefit by getting low risk feedback as a part of the workshop or the training experience.   In addition through follow up activities on the job, adult learners can gain helpful and specific feedback in honing the use of their new knowledge and skills.  

The Broward County Schools HRD Department offers a blended CD-ROM and classroom-based course, Coaching for Quality Staff Development , which assists participants in providing effective feedback. To learn more about how effective feedback can be provided as a follow up activity by a trainer, a peer or a supervisor, review the Keys to Effective Feedback document. (pdf)

Here are some examples of Low Risk Feedback and how it might be accomplished in the work setting following training or staff development as the participants try out new skills and behaviors.

Feedback can be provided on job performance by valued peers such as teachers on the same grade level, team, or subject area department or by ESE Specialists, Reading Specialists, or Curriculum Specialists within the school.


Feedback can be provided by the Office Manager to secretarial and clerical personnel or they can buddy up and offer feedback to one another.

Feedback can be provided by the transportation supervisor to bus drivers who are applying new skills to managing behavior on the bus.



Job Embedded Approaches


Job Embedded Learning is learning that occurs as part of the normal work activities of an adult.   Job Embedded approaches may be used to assist adults in transferring and applying new learning from classroom based training events to their professional lives.

Job embedded staff development is not an add on but rather becomes a part of the work that professionals do everyday on the job. Examples of job embedded approaches include coaching, action research, study groups or professional book talks.

Click on each to learn more about the approach and how it might be used as a follow up strategy.

Think about the examples of follow up strategies and job embedded approaches that may be used as follow up strategies.   Consider how you might provide assurance of transfer and application of new knowledge and skills in the design project you are working on.

Submitted Activity 5 A: Answer the questions below and submit them via email to your learning facilitator.   If you do not have access to email, print out your responses. A pdf file is provided as an option and use the US Mail or Pony Mail to send them to your learning facilitator.

How will the adult learners access feedback as part of the training or after the training on the job?  
What specific follow up activities will be designed as a part of your design product you are preparing?
What is the rationale for selecting the follow up approach you have decided upon?