Islamabad, June 2022. Institutions and organisations tend to appoint as trainers individuals whose technical expertise in a particular field is well established and recognised. The assumption is that if somebody is an expert in a certain subject, they should also be capable of providing training on this topic by applying adult learning methodologies.
Functioning as an effective trainer in the area of border management requires more than extensive subject matter knowledge however, it also requires specific skills and understanding in how to transmit that knowledge to an audience effectively. Successful trainers are not those that are applauded by training participants, but those that are capable of empowering professionals to efficiently carry out their job.
It is well established in academic studies that adults learn differently to students. Adults often need or request training to improve a specific aspect of performance, not just to pass exams or gain certifications. Adults often learn more via active involvement in learning or practice of a specific skill. And adult learners rarely have time to study or complete homework outside of prescribed training hours.
Recognition of all these aspects, and adaptation of training with the use of adult learning methodologies is therefore a foundation to border management agencies such as the FIA in ensuring that training translates into improved operational performance of their staff.
To this end, ICMPD organised a dedicated Training of Trainers workshop on 6-7 June 2022 for 11 serving instructors from the Federal Investigation Agency on adult learning and advanced training methodologies in Islamabad. The 11 participants are all lead instructors from various departments of the FIA, including the Immigration Wing, Cyber Crime, Counter Terrorism, Media Wing as well as Technical and Legal Wings.
The workshop, organised within the framework of the European Union funded “Integrated Border Management in the Silk Routes countries” (IBM Silk Routes) project, covered various aspects of pedagogy and training methodologies focusing on the differences between adult learning and student learning with a participant-centred approach. The training also emphasised the importance of training design such as establishing effective learning objectives, conducting pre-training needs assessments, and application of the learning cycle and delivery modalities. The training workshop further covered more practical aspects such as how to run group work (both online and in a face-to-face setting), logistical aspects, use of visual aids, soft skills, handling complex situations and the roles of experts and facilitators.
This training workshop served to enhance the training delivery skills of the FIA instructors for both online and face-to-face training. A follow up to this training is scheduled to be organised in August 2022 with a broader target audience including key staff from the FIA Academy as part of the ongoing capacity building initiative for the FIA under the IBM Silk Routes project.
The training was organised under the framework of the EU funded “Integrated Border Management in the Silk Routes Countries” project which is implemented by the International Centre for Migration Policy Development (ICMPD). The project aims to support the countries of the Silk Routes region, including Pakistan, to build more effective and efficient border management systems, and in doing so strengthen the capacity of state authorities to combat irregular migration, encourage safe migration, and enhance trade and prosperity across borders.
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