Performance technology degrees entails learning more about how to improve human performance in a working environment. Many terms are used to define the field of human performance management, which is closely related to instructional design and instructional technology. The field of performance improvement is defined as the systematic process of discovering and analyzing human performance improvement gaps, planning for future improvements in human performance, designing and developing cost-effective and ethically-justifiable interventions to close performance gaps, implementing the interventions, and evaluate the financial and non financial results. Several colleges and universities offer coursework leading to an online performance technology degree at various levels including a Ph.D. in Education/Training and Performance Improvement.
Performance Improvement Management Training and Education
So, what are performance technology degrees all about? The American Society of Training and Development (ASTD) defines Performance Improvement as “the process of identifying and analyzing important organizational and individual performance gaps, planning for future performance improvement, designing and developing cost-effective and ethically justifiable interventions to close performance gaps, implementing the interventions, and evaluating the financial and non-financial results.” Interchangeable program terms include performance management degree among others.
The International Society for Performance Improvement (ISPI) defined HPT as a “systematic approach to improving productivity and competence that uses a set of methods and procedures – and a strategy for solving problems – for realizing opportunities related to the performance of people. It is the process of selection, analysis, design, development, implementation, and evaluation of programs to most cost-effectively influence human behavior and accomplishment. It is also a systematic combination of three important processes which can be applied to individuals, small groups, and large organizations.” These are:
- Performance analysis
- Cause analysis
- Intervention selection
Human Performance Technology (HPT) is defined as a systematic approach that is used to improving organizational and individual performance, productivity, and output. It is also referred to as Performance Technology (PT), which is related to:
- Six Sigma
- Process Improvement
- Organization Development
- Instructional Design and Technology
- Human Factors
- Learning Design
- Performance Support Systems
- Knowledge Management
Human Performance Technology Courses
HPT courses may include the following depending on the program of study: Organizational Behavior, Principles of Human Performance Technology, Change Management, Adult Learning Theory, Performance Analysis, Evaluation, Performance Consulting, Project Management, Instructional Design Principles, Needs Assessment, among others. These are often offered in a human performance technology masters or instructional design progam.
Human Performance Technology Careers
HPT rigorously analyzes the needs of an organization (need analysis), process and human performance for new design and identifying the causes for performance gaps, and tries to provide new designs and solutions to improve and sustain the performance and outcomes. It is also focused on evaluating the results and outcomes of the intervention (program evaluation). Performance technology degree programs combine aspects of the above areas in their PT courses.
Corporate training job titles include:
- Training and development specialist
- Training manager
- Training director
- Organizational development consultant
- e-Learning specialist
- Chief learning officer (CLO) or chief knowledge officer (CKO)
- Technical trainer
- Customer service trainer
Corporate Training and Instructional Design Programs
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