CarterRadley’s IMPARTT Approach

CarterRadley develops learning experiences using the IMPARTTTM paradigm. IMPARTT enables the accelerated acquisition of the knowledge and experience necessary to successfully transition motivated learners to new roles. IMPARTT learners develop the required skills and behaviors of a professional in the context of their specific domain.

IMPARTT learning experiences are conducted in an immersive environment with the support and guidance of expert mentors. Participants practice applying professional knowledge, skills, and behaviors under real-world conditions within the safety of the learning environment. Professional performance assessment, feedback and reflective activities ensure participants, as individuals and as teams:

  • Master the technical knowledge, skills and tools expected of a professional,
  • Validate their ability to commercially apply the knowledge, skills and tools, and
  • Demonstrate their competency in the organizational, industrial and cultural contexts of their area.

“The only way for a learner to fail a CarterRadley learning experience is if they don’t try!”

With CarterRadley learning experiences the participants can either do the work, or they can’t. If they can’t, they are mentored while they practice doing the work until they can. They can’t fake it. It can’t be done. We call this learning approach IMPARTT. Using IMPARTT:

  • The learner is Immersed in a real, or simulated, work environment so they experience, and do, everything professionals do.
  • The learner is Mentored. Learners must receive feedback on their deliverables and behavior, otherwise how will they know how they are performing, and what their strengths and areas for improvement might be?
  • Learners Practice their knowledge, skills and behavior repeatedly in their immersive work environment.
  • Learners are Assessed on their real work deliverables and on their professional behavior. Unlike school and corporate training where assessment is typically a test of acquired knowledge.
  • Learners Reflect on what they’ve done and how it worked, so they can improve performance moving forward.
  • Learners work with real-world work environment Tools, processes and products, etc. as part of their immersive experience.
  • Learners learn how to work effectively in Teams, as they will be required to do at work.

All work roles and their associated learning experiences have pre-requisite knowledge and skills. Using IMPARTT, institutes of higher education can produce graduates with verifiable skills that indicate the learner’s status in terms of abilities.

This means higher education institutions can work with business partners to define the learning experiences for work roles and career paths for a specific business partner, generically for an industry domain, or for both.

Each IMPARTT dimension is described in more detail in the following sections.

Immerse

In order for learning to be truly effective, an poolindividual needs to be immersed in an environment that is as close as possible to what they will actually experience as a professional.

If you want to learn about swimming, studying from a book will provide plenty of information and knowledge. But if you what to learn how to swim, you ultimately have to get in the water and swim.

The same thing is true with commercial airline pilots. Interestingly, pilots used to train in real airplanes. We’ve learned however that excellent flight simulators actually accelerate the process of mastering the roles and responsibilities of becoming a good pilot and do so using a safely controlled environment.

Immersion assures individuals master not only knowledge, but application and execution as well. Professionals must develop feelings about how to perform complex tasks; what the right things are to do under varying circumstances; and about bringing it all together under the real-time pressures of the situation.

Learning to be a professional goes beyond training your mind. It also includes training the rest of you to react appropriately to stimuli from the events that are taking place. Immersion in real tasks or in realistic simulations is a proven accelerator of experience acquisition.

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Mentor

mentorIn traditional education, learners show up for class, sit down, unzip their brains and passively wait for the teacher to pour in information. In an immersive education, learners show up prepared, and proactively engage in real work under the guidance of a mentor.

A mentor sets-up and sustains the immersive learning environment and reinforces this immersion through role-play a supervisor, manager, counsel, executive management, vendor, or any other role that is critical to the context and environment of the learning experience.

Mentors provide feedback to learners on their deliverables and behaviors, and guide learners to consider viable options as they assess risks, plan, organize, make decisions and deliver their work.

The Mentor is responsible for ensuring learners successfully complete the learning experience by demonstrating their abilities to work effectively and to complete deliverables on schedule and with professional quality.

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Practice

Doing things consistently, effectively, with practicequality and in a timely manner requires practice. An individual must have command of the domain knowledge but, it is only during practice that they learn how to perform. Learners must practice skills repeatedly in different contexts to develop competency, confidence and to earn the trust of co-workers.

Practice provides the mechanism for understanding whether progress is being made toward the learning goals or not. Practice is something that professionals in all disciplines do. A symphony orchestra does not perform a piece of music without practicing it first. The same thing goes for a professional sports team, a surgeon, a trial lawyer, or a commercial airline pilot. None of these people study something in a textbook and are then expected to do the job professionally without practicing.

The individual and the organization need to figure out how learners are going to practice so they master not only the knowledge, but also the skills and behaviors in a professional context to assure competency when called upon to perform.

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Assess 

assessAssessment is also a critical aspect of being an effective professional. An organization needs to know who is able to do what, when and how well. Skilled, professional mentors assess learner deliverables a
nd behaviors. But more importantly professionals need to know how to assess themselves.

Professionals need to know where their personal knowledge and performance gaps are. They have
to decide whether or not those gaps are important enough to address. Professional assessment starts with the organization or institution establishing goals and objectives to be assessed and accurate mechanisms for assessing them. Over time, a true professional learns how to use those assessment vehicles to help them understand their performance and assess themselves.

This way they know whether or not they are ready for a job and if they are not they can take the initiative to do those things necessary to become ready for the job.

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Reflect

Reflection is a critical element of learning reflecthow to do things better. It is generally accepted that when an individual is doing something that is new, there is an expectation and an implicit forgiveness for initial failures. What’s not acceptable is to continue to fail by doing the same things again.

It is important for us to reflect on our experiences, to recognize what has worked and what has not worked, to figure out what it is we want to continue to do, and to determine what behaviors need to change or skills need to be honed.

The best time to reflect is as close as possible to the time the actual events have occurred. As true professional go through transitions they need to (and they do) take time to reflect on changes that are taking place, what they are learning, and what kinds of things they need to be doing differently to make sure they are aligned with the desired goals and objectives.

Learners benefit by reflecting on controlled-failure experiences in a safe environment.

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Tools

toolsIn today’s professional world especially in the high tech realm, and individual’s ability to use sophisticated tools is critical. There are many different kinds of tools with different levels of functionality and quality. Unfortunately, at most colleges and universities, professors have selected tools that are appropriate for teaching not necessarily for professionals to do a job. As such, we find individuals in situations where they may know how to do the work but they are not capable of doing it at a professional level because they are not proficient in the use of the necessary tools.

This is tightly related to the concept of immersion. An individual needs to make sure that they are using the right tools and that as a professional they know how to use the tools in the way they need to when they are called upon to do so.

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Team

Another key aspect of becoming a professional is teamlearning how to work together with others as a part of a team. In certain jobs, in certain situations, at certain times – especially in high tech industries – individuals may have been able to produce a whole product by his or herself.

In today’s world however, most every project with any real significance is created through the collaboration of a team. Learning how to be an effective team member is a skill that is not taught in traditional schools particularly well. In fact, in m
ost school situations, if students take it upon themselves to team with others, the professor will typically call that cheating.

In order to become an effective member of a team, individuals need to learn several things. First of all, one needs to learn how to work together with others. Do to so, you need to develop the skills to recognize how to take a piece of work, partition it into executable components that can be handled by smaller groups or individuals, proceed to successfully complete these elements, and then bring them back together and integrate them into a whole solution as if it had been implemented by a single individual.

These are team skills that typically take practice. This is why you see a great deal of practice in team sports. Its not just about an individual’s ability to catch or throw a ball that matters, its about one’s ability to work well with others as members of a team to win the game.