What's Happening

Check out what our people and partners are researching, thinking, reading, writing, watching and doing! (Note: The opinions expressed are those of the authors and do not necessarily reflect the views of ETR as an agency.)


Tic-Tic Boom: Being the Work and Doing the Work
October 29, 2015

Tic-Tic Boom: Being the Work and Doing the Work

By Michael Everett, MHS | October 29, 2015
Project Coordinator, ETR

What responsibility do HIV/AIDS organizations have concerning the wellness of staff who are also Black men who have sex with men?

I have pondered this question often throughout my 15-year career in HIV services. 

By Michael Everett, MHS
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Tags: HIV-AIDS, HIV, MSM, Black MSM, Webinar
Big Learning in the Big Easy
October 20, 2015

Big Learning in the Big Easy

By Annika Shore, MPH | October 20, 2015
Professional Development Consultant, ETR

I love trainings. I love facilitating them. I love participating in them. And this past September, I found out I really love training in New Orleans!

That’s where ETR trainers and other leaders in the field of adolescent sexual health gathered last month for a rigorous four days of learning together. The goals? For these leaders to become trainers on two evidence-based programs (EBP), Reducing the Risk (RTR) and Draw the Line/Respect the Line (DTL).

Those of us who use evidence-based teen pregnancy prevention programs feel strongly that young people deserve meaningful sexual health education. Effective sexual health education helps youth build knowledge, skills and attitudes. 

At ETR, we think evidence-based practices work for adult learners as well!

By Annika Shore, MPH
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Tags: Professional development, Training of trainers, Training design
Facilitation Quick Tips: Four Corners
September 28, 2015

Facilitation Quick Tips: Four Corners

By Stephanie Guinosso, MPH | September 28, 2015
Program Manager, ETR

Here’s an activity I like to use to energize the room early in a learning event. It’s useful for getting to know your participants and for allowing them to get to know one another. It can also be used as a brain “warm-up.” It primes participants to discuss questions about the material that will be covered.

By Stephanie Guinosso, MPH
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Tags: Training design, Professional development
Training for the Future: Online Professional Development is Changing Our World!
September 1, 2015

Training for the Future: Online Professional Development is Changing Our World!

By Dan Rice & Nicole Cushman, MPH | September 1, 2015
Director of Training, Answer & Executive Director, Answer

Follow me @<insert creative name here>!
Find out what’s trending today with #yourfavoritetopic.
Tell all your friends to like our page!!!!

The writing is on the screen! Technology has enabled us to access information in myriad digital forms and changed how we interact with the world around us.

Today, people turn to the Internet for everything from personal and professional correspondence to researching the latest trends. Educators are no exception. They’re searching for new ways to integrate technology into the classroom to further engage their students in all different subject areas. Many are also looking online for the most up-to-date professional development opportunities.

Why are so many professionals seeking out online professional development?

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Tags: Professional development, Online learning, Answer
Storytelling for Sustainability: The Power to Inspire
August 6, 2015

Storytelling for Sustainability: The Power to Inspire

By Joan Singson | August 6 2015
Program Manager, ETR

“Even if you have reams of evidence on your side, remember: numbers numb, jargon jars, and nobody ever marched on Washington because of a pie chart. If you want to connect with your audience, tell them a story.”
            —Andy Goodman

A lot of different stakeholders play a role in sustaining effective programs. You need them to understand in straightforward terms what it is you do and exactly why that’s important. You need them to stand ready to be your program’s advocates and champions.

Infographics, icons and beautiful presentations of data are all popular ways to do this, but I think the most powerful way to inspire people is through a story. A darn good story.

What does it take to thrill the heart and chill the spine? Let’s take a look.

By Joan Singson
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Tags: Sustaining programs, Storytelling
Facilitation Quick Tips: Hot Potato
July 30, 2015

Facilitation Quick Tips: Hot Potato

By Rebecca Shemesh | July 30, 2015
ETR Consultant Trainer

This activity can be easily adapted for use as an opener, energizer or closer. It gets participants up and moving, interacting with each other and rocking to your own special playlist. It’s a great way to build excitement at the beginning of a training day, help participants reinforce learning in the middle, or consolidate learning and intentions at the end. Highly adaptable and lots of fun.

By Rebecca Shemesh
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Tags: Training design, Professional development
Losing the "E" in E-Learning
July 13, 2015

Losing the "E" in E-Learning

By Tamara Neff, MA | July 13, 2015
E-Learning Curriculum Developer, ETR

As technology is further integrated into our daily lives (and our very beings), so it has become an essential part of the learning experience. We see it from early childhood development on through emerging K-12 education standards. We find it in popular online higher education and professional development programs.

Technology continues to enhance and improve the quality and quantity of learning opportunities available to an ever-widening population of learners. This is true to such an extent, the “E” in E-learning is becoming redundant. Many of us in the field might assert that it already has done so.

By Tamara Neff, MA
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Tags: E-learning, Technology
Drive-Thru Training? Steer Clear!
June 30, 2015

Drive-Thru Training? Steer Clear!

By Debra Christopher, MSM | June 30, 2015
Director, Professional Learning Systems, ETR

OK, I admit it. I’ve been around for awhile. I taught health education in the classroom for four years early in my career. Then I made a shift, and for the past 25 years I’ve worked to support adult learners who deliver health education programs to youth.

The essence of my mission: create change (in adult instructional savvy) to create change (in youth behavior).

By Debra Christopher, MSM
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Tags: Professional development, Training design
Facilitation Quick Tips: Talkin' Toe-2-Toe
May 18, 2015

Facilitation Quick Tips: Talkin' Toe-2-Toe

By Joan Singson | May 18, 2015
Program Manager, ETR

Picture yourself standing in front of a room going through the talking points of your training design. You pan the room and notice a few heads bobbing. The bodies they’re attached to twitch as they fight training fatigue. You see glazed-over stares of participants whose minds are somewhere between the training room and a warm bed.

It’s time for an energizer!

By Joan Singson
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Tags: Training design, Facilitation
5 Guiding Questions: Take Your In-Person Training Activities Virtual
April 20, 2015

5 Guiding Questions: Take Your In-Person Training Activities Virtual

By Tracy Wright, MAED, & Annika Shore, MPH | April 20, 2015
Project Director, ETR, & Professional Development Consultant, ETR

One of the essential hallmarks of a successful training is participant engagement through planned activities. Trainers know how to do this well in in-person trainings. But, for many of us, designing and delivering activities in the virtual environment can feel less certain—even intimidating.

Here are 5 guiding questions that will help you design successful virtual training activities.

By Tracy Wright, MAED, & Annika Shore, MPH
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Tags: Professional development, Training design, Virtual trainings
Facilitation Quick Tips: Drop Us a Line!
April 16, 2015

Facilitation Quick Tips: Drop Us a Line!

By Annika Shore, MPH | April 16, 2015
Professional Development Consultant, ETR

This upbeat activity has some of the best elements for any training—movement, music and conversation. It engages brains, energizes participants and helps them personalize the learning.

By Annika Shore, MPH
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Tags: Training design, Professional development, Facilitation
Learning Matters: The What, Why and WOW of Effective Professional Development
March 31, 2015

Learning Matters: The What, Why and WOW of Effective Professional Development

By Debra Christopher, MSM | March 31, 2015
Director, Professional Learning Systems, ETR

Are you a learning specialist? A teacher, trainer or technical assistance provider? In other words, are you charged with teaching people to do something they have never done before? Or do something differently? Or do something better? If so, I hope you will read on.

Understanding the What, Why and WOW of effective professional development is going to help you do better in your work.

By Debra Christopher, MSM
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Tags: Professional development, Training design, Learning theory, Adult learning
Enabling Young People to Thrive: ETR's Program Success Framework
March 25, 2015

Enabling Young People to Thrive: ETR's Program Success Framework

By Marcia Quackenbush, MS, MFT, MCHES | March 25, 2015
Senior Editor, ETR

ETR's got a great video collection. In brief, lively clips, our staff and partners talk about the work we do—products, services and research findings. You can watch them on the "Videos" tab or at the ETR YouTube channel. One of my current favorites describes ETR's Program Success Framework.

 

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By Marcia Quackenbush, MS, MFT, MCHES
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Tags: Program Success Framework, Sustaining programs, Pregnancy prevention, Youth programs, Sexual and reproductive health
Facilitation Quick Tips: Comic Power!
March 19, 2015

Facilitation Quick Tips: Comic Power!

By Kathy Plomer, MPH | March 19, 2015
DASH Professional Learning Collaborative, ETR

This is a great activity to kick off a session. It gets people talking, laughing and sharing experiences related to the training topic. It’s fast and fun.
 

By Kathy Plomer, MPH
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Tags: Professional development, Training design
It's Brain Awareness Week!
March 16, 2015

It's Brain Awareness Week!

By Debra Christopher, MSM | March 16, 2015
Director, Professional Learning Systems, ETR

What’s all the buzz about the brain?

The brain is our personal 3-pound universe. This small but powerful mass of neurons in your head allows you to read these words, comprehend their meaning, and, if you choose, integrate the meaning into long-term memory.

You may even decide to take some kind of action based on the content. Or, at any point in time, you may choose to scroll past this segment, even this entire column, if there is no cognitive “hook” for you.

All this in a matter of seconds. Astounding!

By Debra Christopher, MSM
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Tags: Neuroscience, Professional development, Learning theory
Impact for Change: ETR's Training & Technical Assistance for Teen Pregnancy Prevention Programs
March 16, 2015

Impact for Change: ETR's Training & Technical Assistance for Teen Pregnancy Prevention Programs

By Annika Shore, MPH, & Amy Peterson, MSc | March 16, 2015
Professional Development Consultant, ETR & Project Coordinator, ETR

A well-designed professional development (PD) plan (training, technical assistance, ongoing support) provides the foundation for program tranformation and impact! In fact, our organization, founded 35 years ago, began with a training grant for teen pregnancy prevention programs.

While we have expanded into other areas since then, PD remains a fundamental component of ETR’s work. It’s one of the most important ways we support our clients and maintain our own culture of continuous learning. Our professional learning services are rooted in the belief that learning takes place over time. We view PD not as a one-time training event, but a process that occurs before and throughout the implementation stage.

By Annika Shore, MPH, & Amy Peterson, MSc
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Tags: Professional development, Program Success Framework, Sustaining programs, Pregnancy prevention, Teens
Quick! Free! Easy! Graphics for Your Trainings & Presentations
February 23, 2015

Quick! Free! Easy! Graphics for Your Trainings & Presentations

By Tracy Wright, MAED | February 24, 2015
Project Director, ETR

Finding the right graphic for your trainings and presentations can be a tricky and time-consuming task. Some images have costs associated with them. Others are free to use but may have “strings attached.”

In my attempt to avoid a lot of the hassle around image search, I’ve mostly used what Microsoft Office had to offer. I’d search directly within PowerPoint or Word. This worked well in the past, but it won’t in the future.

Now what?

By Tracy Wright, MAED
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Tags: Training design, Professional development
Facilitation Quick Tips: Meet Three
February 18, 2015

Facilitation Quick Tips: Meet Three

By Debra Christopher, MSM | February 18, 2015
Director, Professional Learning Systems, ETR

Here’s an activity that gets participants up and moving to meet others and establish their own sense of belonging and presence in the training. It can also boost energy and help enliven the training mix midway through an event.

By Debra Christopher, MSM
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Tags: Training design, Professional development
How Do You Define Program Success?
January 27, 2015

How Do You Define Program Success?

By Stephanie Guinosso, MPH | January 27, 2015
Program Manager, ETR

How do you define program success?

From my perspective, a successful program is one that is created in partnership with key stakeholders in the community. It’s developed with the community’s needs in mind. It facilitates positive change in peoples’ lives by addressing multiple layers of an issue, from individual knowledge, attitudes and behaviors to the social and cultural structures within which people live, work and play.

A successful program relies on the best evidence for what works. It’s also flexible and adaptable to the uniqueness of a particular context. Successful programs cultivate the knowledge and skills of implementers to ensure that the program operates at its best capacity—there is a culture of learning and growth, adapting and responding to change. 

By Stephanie Guinosso, MPH
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Tags: Pregnancy prevention, Teens, Evidence-based interventions, Program Success Framework
Learning Matters: Learning Can Be a Slippery Slope
January 22, 2015

Learning Matters: Learning Can Be a Slippery Slope

By Debra Christopher, MSM | January 22, 2015
Director, Professional Learning Systems, ETR

The Colorado Rockies. Snow country in December. Over the holidays, my family and I trekked to the mountains for some snowshoeing and winter hiking. So spectacular!

Our drive home required the navigation of two snowy mountain passes. We were caught in some pretty treacherous weather. My 21-year-old son was driving, and it was stop and go in extremely icy conditions.

By Debra Christopher, MSM
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Tags: Professional development, Learning theory, Training design

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