Are You Asking the Right Survey Questions?

October 3, 2012

Kirkpatrick Quick Tip Vol. 2 #29

Many training professionals wonder if their evaluation forms are asking the best possible questions to obtain the information they need to make good decisions. In fact, this is one of the most common reasons that people contact us.

Read on for practical tips on asking the “right” questions of your training graduates.

1. Keep the end result in mind

The organizational result that your training was designed to support should be your guiding light in determining what is important. Use this as a guide for the types of questions to ask and information required.

2. Focus on application

Ask what the training graduates plan to do with what they learned when they return to their jobs. If possible, ask an open-ended question.

3. Identify barriers to application

Provide an opportunity for training graduates to tell you about any concerns they have with applying their knowledge, and barriers to application they anticipate in the workplace. Share this information with managers and supervisors in aggregate form and work with them to resolve the issues.

Ideally a discussion surrounding this topic took place during training, but including a question in the program evaluation documents this information and provides an opportunity for shy participants to share their thoughts.

About the authors, Dr. Jim Kirkpatrick and Wendy Kayser Kirkpatrick

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