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What are the benefits of instructor-led training for training providers and learners?

Recently updated on July 4th, 2024

We’ve all experienced instructor-led training at some point. Any high school class or in-person/virtual work training session delivered by an instructor falls under this umbrella. While the role of eLearning and blended continues to evolve, it’s impossible to replicate many of the proven benefits of direct face-to-face interaction between instructor and student, which is why instructor-led training remains as important as ever.

Its through this lens that this this article explores the various benefits that ILT offers to both established training providers and learners. By the end, you should have a clear understanding of the advantages this type of training offers, why it’s a training format you should continue to invest in, and the technology required to facilitate it.

What are the benefits of instructor-led training for training providers

1. Training costs can be controlled and pre-planned

One of the main advantages of instructor-led training is that the costs involved can be anticipated. There are fixed costs associated with this type of training. For example, you will always know that an instructor and a venue (unless the training is virtual) are required, so you can obtain estimates for these expenses before scheduling the training.

You will also be able to get an idea of additional expenses associated with logistics, such as booking and managing the venue, arranging travel, and renting technology, among others. Although it’s not an exact science and unexpected costs can always arise, having control over these elements helps you forecast whether this format fits your budget.

2. Better understanding and personal relationships with learners

This is a benefit that seems obvious yet cannot be overstated. Instructor-led training offers the potential for deep understanding between the instructor and learner, especially when the training is conducted face-to-face. Ample research supports this claim:

A 2022 study by Photopoulos et al. investigated university students’ reactions to the switch to remote learning during COVID-19. The findings revealed that students reported higher engagement, better understanding of the subject matter, and a preference for classroom teaching as a learning format.

Further research highlights that personalized learning, a core component of instructor-led training, leads to stronger learning outcomes. This approach tailors the pace and focus of instruction to meet the individual needs and goals of each student.

In 2015, the American nonprofit think tank, the RAND Corporation, conducted a study on achievement in 62 public charter and district schools that implemented various personalized learning practices.

Researchers collected achievement data from students who participated in personalized learning environments and compared it with data from matched groups of students attending other schools that did not use personalized learning practices.

The study found that students in schools utilizing personalized learning practices made greater progress over the course of two school years compared to those who did not. Additionally, students who started out behind were catching up and performing at or above national averages through personalized learning approaches. Personalized learning content also helps educators and trainers tailor their programs to accommodate different learning styles.

3. Allows you to offer a wider scope of training courses and scale your business

If you’re a training provider specialized in offering self-paced courses, then integrating instructor-led training can significantly broaden your range of offerings. This expansion doesn’t necessarily require a complete overhaul of your training business. Many training providers have successfully expanded their course portfolios or adapted existing courses into various formats.

For example, Positive Partnerships, a national initiative funded by the Australian Government aimed at enhancing outcomes for autistic students, successfully adapted a five-day face-to-face program into a blended learning course. This revised course format combined two days of in-person instruction with three days of self-paced eLearning, utilizing Arlo.

You can find out how they did it by watching the video below:

4. ILT gives you greater value and authority in your target markets

Offering instructor-led training provides a significant opportunity to position your training business as a market leader.

There are several reasons for this:

  • Training courses led by subject matter experts are highly valued. Learners benefit from one-on-one contact with the instructor, gaining access to specialized expertise that’s difficult to find elsewhere, along with all the associated benefits.
  • You have the opportunity to improve the visibility of your instructors. Most instructor-led courses available for online booking include detailed information about the instructor, such as their qualifications and professional expertise.
  • The above benefits can directly improve your reputation as a training provider. With courses taught by experts and satisfied learners, you achieve what every business strives for: happy customers who share their positive experiences with your products and services with others.

Related article: 13 smart marketing ideas to sell training courses

What are the benefits of instructor-led training for learners

1. More individual feedback for learners

Unlike self-paced online courses, where feedback can sometimes be delayed, automated, or somewhat formulaic, instructor-led training can provide more specific and useful feedback to individual learners in real time.

For example, learners can receive immediate clarification on concepts, corrections for misunderstandings, and encouragement or redirection based on their performance, rather than just receiving a score or pass/fail grading.

2. Hands on practice and experience

Instructor-led training is the default delivery method for any type of training in professions that require learners to gain hands-on practice and experience, such as in professional trades and medical fields. 

You can see an example of this below by the New Zealand based healthcare and first aid training organization, St John.

An example of an instructor led training session making up part of an instructor led training course.

Image Source

As we’ve mentioned, instructor-led training courses don’t necessarily have to be in-person, and can be carried out virtually. 

For example, you can see below an example of a practical, instructor-led course offered virtually by Arlo customer the Vancouver Island Construction Association. The course page gives a clear overview of what learners can expect and the skills they’ll get from the course. The example also highlights how professional training can be delivered virtually.

An overview of a virtual training program web page

Image Source

3. Offers networking opportunities

Instructor-led training creates conducive environments for networking among participants. Through group discussions, collaborative activities, and shared learning experiences, learners have the chance to connect with peers, industry experts, and their instructors.

These interactions often lead to valuable professional relationships, potential collaborations on projects, and the exchange of ideas and best practices.

Training formats that suit instructor-led training

One-on-one training

One-on-one training sessions provide personalized attention and tailored instruction directly from the instructor to the learner. This format allows for focused learning, addressing the specific needs and goals of the individual participant. It is particularly effective for topics requiring deep exploration or personalized skill development.

Small group training

Small group training involves a limited number of participants, typically fewer than ten, creating a more interactive and collaborative learning environment. Participants benefit from collective discussions, peer learning, and shared insights under the guidance of an instructor.

Workshops

Workshops are interactive sessions focused on practical skills development or specific learning objectives. Led by an expert instructor, workshops often involve hands-on activities, case studies, group exercises, and discussions aimed at applying knowledge in real-world contexts.

This training delivery format promotes active learning, problem-solving skills, and collaborative learning experiences among participants, making it especially effective for topics that benefit from intensive exploration and application of concepts.

Seminars

Seminars are educational sessions led by an expert or a panel of speakers on a specific topic or theme. They typically involve presentations, discussions, and Q&A sessions aimed at sharing knowledge, insights, and perspectives with a larger audience.

Seminars can vary in size from small groups to larger gatherings and are often held in conference settings or organized by educational institutions, professional associations, or businesses. Attendees benefit from gaining in-depth knowledge, networking opportunities, and exposure to new ideas and trends in their field of interest.

Webinars

Webinars are online presentations or workshops, known as web-based seminars, that facilitate instructor-led online training in a virtual environment. They provide a platform for interactive learning where participants can engage remotely through video conferencing software or specialized webinar platforms.

Webinars are a popular format for virtual instructor-led training, allowing attendees to join from anywhere with internet access. They often incorporate features like live chat, polling, and Q&A sessions, promoting engagement and interactivity among participants.

Is offering instructor-led training right for your training business?

Deciding to offer a new type of training involves considerable planning, and while we can’t cover everything, we can provide an overview of some of the crucial areas you’ll need to think about:

What are your audiences and your learners preferences?

Understanding your learners’ preferences is arguably the most important consideration. If your target demographic strongly favors personal interaction, values expert instruction, or shows interest in learning concepts that require the expertise of an instructor, then instructor-led training (ILT) is worth considering.

Do you have the resources?

As previously discussed, ILT is effective only when you have access to qualified instructors who can deliver high-quality and engaging training. You will need to consider the costs associated with hiring these instructors, as well as the logistical and technological expenses involved in running instructor-led training.

Does instructor-led training fit the objectives of your training programs?

ILT is particularly suitable for complex topics that benefit from hands-on practice and immediate feedback. For instance, if you offer any form of professional development training or courses that require an instructor, such as first aid training, then ILT could be an excellent match.

Do you have the right technology?

Whether in-person or virtual, instructor-led training requires appropriate software to run effectively:

Training management software

Training management software serves as a central platform for organizing and scheduling courses, managing participant registrations, and overseeing resources necessary for training sessions. This type of software automates administrative tasks such as sending reminders, processing payments, and generating reports on attendance and participant feedback.

By simplifying these logistical aspects, training management software enables trainers to concentrate their energy on delivering effective training.

Related article: The Ultimate Guide to Training Management Software

Video conferencing platforms

Video conferencing tools are essential for virtual instructor-led training. Platforms like Zoom support features such as video and audio calls, screen sharing, chat functionalities, and recording capabilities for playback and review.

If you’re interested in how a training management platform like Arlo works with Zoom, you can check out our integration page.

Final thoughts

This overview of the benefits of instructor-led training has shown you some of the reasons why it’s a format worth considering for your training business, whether that means developing new courses designed to be taught by an instructor or adapting some of your existing course material.

If you’re interested in learning more about doing either of those two things, then check out our Ultimate Guide to Instructor-Led Training below, where we dive deep into why instructors are a training provider’s most prized asset, case studies of businesses that have adapted or blended their self-paced content with an instructor-led approach, and tips on how you can do the same.

Want to learn more?

Check out the Ultimate Guide to Instructor-Led Training.

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