Technology Trainer Competencies

Assisting patrons with technology is an increasingly common responsibility for public service library staff. However, simply knowing how to use technology is not enough. Library staff need to be equipped with the skills and knowledge to effectively assist patrons with technology. 

These competencies outline the skills and knowledge necessary for library staff to be effective technology trainers. They are grouped into sections based on their application. Library staff may need all competencies or they may only need some of them, depending on their job description.

Download the Tech Trainer Competencies [DOC]

 

Competency Sections:

 

Technology Skills:

Applying knowledge of 21st century literacy skills, being prepared to answer technology questions, and adapting to the limitations of library computing.

Adult Learning Environment:

Creating the unique environment in which adult learners are involved in the learning process, being aware of adult learning theory, and respecting the diverse culture and experience of learners.

Communication Skills:

Using effective communication tools during training and demonstrating patience with learners.

Individual Instructional Skills:

Using effective training techniques for individual instruction, promoting individual practice, and assessing the needs of the learner.

Class Preparation Skills:

Preparing for classroom instruction and seeking opportunities to improve instructional techniques.

Classroom Instructional Delivery Skills:

Using effective classroom training techniques, promoting active learning, adapting instruction to meet the needs of learners, and encouraging individual practice.

Instructional Design Skills:

Applying instructional design principles, establishing goals and objectives, evaluating instructional tools, and developing online trainings.

Planning and Coordinating Skills:

Coordinating instruction using individual and classroom models, conducting needs assessments, and managing instructional resources.

Professional Development Skills:

Recognizing the importance of professional development with regards to technology, instruction, and learning.

Technology Skills

 

Applying knowledge of 21st century literacy skills, being prepared to answer technology questions, and adapting to the limitations of library computing.
Recommended for all public service staff, partners, and volunteers.

Competencies

Skills/Knowledge

Define 21st century literacy skills and identify resources for self directed learning.

Use a recommended technology proficiency list as a guide for library staff.

Understand how to help patrons with questions and troubleshooting, even in areas where proficiency has not been attained.

Use help menus.
Search for online resources.
Use computer reference books.

Understand how to account for the restrictions and limits of library computing and adjust instruction accordingly.

Explain and adapt to Internet filters, security access issues, time limits, and wireless connectivity.
Explain recommendations for data storage on public computers.

Adult Learning Environment

 

Creating the unique environment in which adult learners are involved in the learning process, being aware of adult learning theory, and respecting the diverse culture and experience of learners.
Recommended for all instructional staff, partners, and volunteers.

Competencies

Skills/Knowledge

Understand various learning styles and can recognize differences.

Define various learning styles, including VARK.

Understand adult learning theory and utilize that knowledge in the classroom to best promote learning.

Understand that learning occurs through observation, interaction and experience.
Know how to motivate learners to increase learning.

Foster a positive learning environment that respects and values diversity.

Respect the diverse culture and experience of learners.
Create an atmosphere that is informal, nonjudgmental, collaborative, and supportive.

Communication Skills

 

Using effective communication tools during training and demonstrating patience with learners.
Recommended for all public service staff, partners, and volunteers.

Competencies

Skills/Knowledge

Understand the importance of communication skills in teaching technology, and uses effective communication techniques during training.

Speak clearly and with proper enunciation.
Use appropriate vocal tone, volume, and pace.
Use appropriate body language.

Use communication techniques in the classroom to increase learning.

Use introductions, ice-breakers, and appropriate humor.
Maintain flexibility and adjusts lesson plans based on the learners present.

Demonstrate patience and empathy for the learner’s needs and abilities.

Listen carefully to learner’s requests.
Respond by taking time to explain concepts and solutions.

Individual Instructional Skills

 

Using effective training techniques for individual instruction, promoting individual practice, and assessing the needs of the learner.
Recommended for all public service staff, partners, and volunteers.

Competencies

Skills/Knowledge

Practice effective training techniques.

Present ideas clearly.
Use a variety of approaches to accommodate learning styles.
Actively listen to learner input.
Be prepared to deal with difficult situations.

Encourage learners to practice independently.

Offer ideas and techniques for independent practice.
Share tutorials and other resources for learners’ self-paced learning.

Assess the immediate need of the learner and provide relevant information and activities

Promote active learning in one on one settings.
Collaborate with learner to identify and solve their need.

Class Preparation Skills

 

Preparing for classroom instruction and seeking opportunities to improve instructional techniques.
Recommended for all instructional staff, partners, and volunteers.

Competencies

Skills/Knowledge

Understand the importance of preparing for class.

Review all class notes and curriculum.
Practice class presentation and delivery.

Prepare the learning environment in a manner that is most conducive to learning.

Copy all necessary handouts.
Set up computers and equipment.
Provide supplementary library materials.

Seek opportunities and identify resources to improve techniques and behavior.

Review and reflect upon class evaluations.
Incorporate feedback into personal development plan.

Classroom Instructional Delivery Skills

 

Using effective classroom training techniques, promoting active learning, adapting instruction to meet the needs of learners, and encouraging individual practice.
Recommended for instructional staff, volunteers, and partners.

Competencies

Skills/Knowledge

Practice effective training techniques.

Present ideas clearly.
Use a variety of approaches to accommodate learning styles.
Actively listens to learner input.
Explain the goals and objectives of the class

Promote active learning in the classroom.

Provide examples.
Allow time for question and answer.
Incorporate the various learning styles by using handouts, a projector, hands-on learning and small group work.

Receive feedback from learners and respond by adapting instruction to meet their needs.

Check in with learners to ensure they are understanding concepts.
Adapt classroom activities based on individual learning preferences, level of skill, and level of support needed.
Allow learners time to evaluate the class and the effectiveness of the trainer.

Demonstrate classroom management techniques in a technology-rich environment.

Set ground rules and boundaries in the classroom.
Be prepared to deal with difficult situations.

Encourage learners to practice outside of the classroom.

Offer ideas and techniques for independent practice.
Share tutorials and other resources for learners’ self-paced learning.

Instructional Design Skills

 

Understand how to design instructional materials so that they meet desired learning goals.
Recommended for instructional staff, volunteers, and partners.

Competencies

Skills/Knowledge

Understand and apply basic instructional design principles to develop training materials.

Define and sequence the content of the class.
Select the appropriate delivery method for instruction.

Define desired goals for patron training programs and build a curriculum to meet those goals.

Develop objectives to achieve goals.
Develop a lesson plan or instructional outline.
Create handouts to accompany in-class learning.

Demonstrate the ability to select and evaluate instructional software, websites and training resources.

Search for training resources using the Internet.
Evaluate resources based on ease of use, effectiveness, and cost.

Adapt to changes in technology and incorporate those changes into the curriculum.

Keep informed about technology news, both inside and outside of your organization.
Explore new technologies as time and budget allows.

Understand and utilize best practices in developing online trainings.

Design trainings to be interactive.
Use presentation tools that promote learning through visual, auditory, and written means.
Provide activities or assignments that promote continued learning after the online training has ended.

Planning and Coordinating Skills

 

Coordinating instruction using individual and classroom models, conducting needs assessments, and managing instructional resources.
Recommended for all instructional program coordinators.

Competencies

Skills/Knowledge

Plan and coordinate instructional services to build 21st century literacy skills and to meet other educational needs of the community.

Identify opportunities to offer formal training in the library, including classroom and individual instruction.
Identify community partners to involve in instructional services.
Identify computer classes of interest to the community.

Evaluate instructional services and use results to make improvements.

Develop and use post-class evaluation forms.
Collect feedback from trainers
Consider staff resources available.

Conduct needs assessments to determine community needs.

Collect patron surveys and staff input.
Ensure feedback is gathered from the entire community, not just current library users.

Identify resources for instructional services.

Identify locations for instruction.
Acquire new technologies (hardware, software) as needed.
Manage class scheduling.
Coordinate with appropriate departments as needed.

Professional Development Skills

 

Recognizing the importance of professional development with regards to technology, instruction, and learning.
Recommended for all staff, volunteers, and partners.

Competencies

Skills/Knowledge

Refresh his/her training skills periodically.

Attend workshops and webinars.
Stay current on technology training and adult learning literature.