GP Trainer Page

tools for your continuing professional development

Intro

We all start off with a strong desire to want to train and thus we became GP Trainers.   And in our early years, it was a steep learning curve, but we enjoyed it and   developed skills that have been transferable and useful to all aspects of our live.  But many of us, after a period of 5-7 years end up resting on our laurels.   We have been good, our trainees have loved us and thus we see no need to change.   And then, life gets busy, as it always does, with other things, and they then hijack us away.  GP training then becomes a bit hum drum and dry or lacks the lustre that it once had.   This is why it is so important to continuously invest in yourself and to build on the skills you have.   There is no end point.  There is no arrival.   We just get better and better – but only if we want to.

So, that is why we have developed this page.   To ensure GP trainers build on their skills year on year.  These incremental steps of development needn’t be massive leaps, but simply building on your repertoire of skills taking into account the capacity you have at that moment in time.  Included on this page is a whole host of links to so many areas of GP training.   We are not suggesting a good GP trainer needs to know all this stuff in an instant.   We’ve provided these tools for YOU to choose and for YOU to explore at a time when it is right for YOU.

If you have any other suggestions for what might be helpful on this page or resources you would like to share with fellow GP trainers, please make contact at:   [email protected] .   Also get in touch if you fancy having a go at developing this page [and recognised as a web author 🙂 ].

What sorts of things should I develop?

That’s a very difficult question to answer because we don’t really know you on a personal level.   You know yourself better than we do.    There are so many skills in GP Training that you can hone in and develop.,  What we have done is created a collection of them at the top of this page.  

  • Look under the “WEBLINKS” and go down the list and see if there is anything there that you know would make a difference to you as a GP trainer.
  • Look at the buttons in pink – is there anything there that excites you?
  • Look at the “TRAINER DEVELOPMENT TOOLS” section at the top.
  • Look at the “IMPROVE TRAINING IDEAS” section – again at the top of this page.
  • Perhaps there is a course that you’d like to go on.  See what your Deanery/GP School provides.  
  • When was the last time you went to your local GP Trainers’ Workhop or 2 day conference?  Why not think about going.   Choose one which has content that interests you.  
  • And finally, think about external courses.  Does doing a Postgraduate Certificate in Education excite you (PGCE)?   How about going on courses outside your region for GP educators like yourself?   Or how about Scaling the Heights?
  • Or perhaps you want to take GP training up a notch.   Do you fancy becoming a Training Programme Director, or a GP Tutor with the GP School with a special interest in a particular aspect of GP Training?   Write to your GP school (or look on their website) and see what vacancies are around.

There is a plethora of opportunities and options.

What the latest educational research says...

No matter how good an educator you are, it is important not to rest on your laurels.    Our educational philosophy often stems from core concepts and it is important that we periodically revisit and re-evaluate these core concepts to see what the latest literature and research says about them.   Otherwise, we will continue to do old things that we thought mattered, but in reality don’t!

  • Learning styles – the latest research says learning styles probably don’t exist and even if they do, they do not matter in terms of teaching.   So, if you have previously been an advocate of learning styles (like I used to be), it is time to move on.   It’s wasteful energy – concentrate on something that makes a difference.    See the Bradford VTS Learning Styles webpage for more on this.

Trainer Reapproval

See this link.  It’s everything you could possibly want to know.

Training the Trainer Videos

Video Playlist
1/14 videos
1
How Adults Learn - Train the Trainer Module  1- 2016
How Adults Learn - Train the Trainer Module 1- 2016
08:19
2
Leading Effective Group Discussions - Train the Trainer Module 1 - 2016
Leading Effective Group Discussions - Train the Trainer Module 1 - 2016
09:28
3
Handling Challenging Learners - Train the Trainer Module 1 - 2016
Handling Challenging Learners - Train the Trainer Module 1 - 2016
08:24
4
Using Comparisons in Learning - Train the Trainer Module 1 - 2016
Using Comparisons in Learning - Train the Trainer Module 1 - 2016
06:14
5
Conducting Role Plays - Training the Trainer Module 1 - 2016
Conducting Role Plays - Training the Trainer Module 1 - 2016
10:11
6
More Than Words - Train the Trainer Module 2 - 2017
More Than Words - Train the Trainer Module 2 - 2017
09:53
7
Managing Fear - Train the Trainer Module 2 - 2017
Managing Fear - Train the Trainer Module 2 - 2017
07:15
8
Recipe For Engagement - Train the Trainer Module 2 - 2017
Recipe For Engagement - Train the Trainer Module 2 - 2017
06:37
9
Creating Effective Demonstrations - Train the Trainer Module 2 - 2017
Creating Effective Demonstrations - Train the Trainer Module 2 - 2017
12:50
10
Active Listening - Train the Trainer Module 3 - 2017
Active Listening - Train the Trainer Module 3 - 2017
07:02
11
Giving Feedback - Train the Trainer Module 3 - 2017
Giving Feedback - Train the Trainer Module 3 - 2017
08:15
12
Crafting Your Story - Train the Trainer Module 3 - 2017
Crafting Your Story - Train the Trainer Module 3 - 2017
07:57
13
Questions That Drive Learning - Train the Trainer Module 3 - 2017
Questions That Drive Learning - Train the Trainer Module 3 - 2017
07:10
14
Telling Great Stories - Train the Trainer Module 3 - 2017
Telling Great Stories - Train the Trainer Module 3 - 2017
11:17

Here are 14 videos grouped into 3 modules for you to work through.  Don’t watch them all in one go – bit by bit and gradual is the key.   Let it soak in so that you can mull it over and build it into your own mental schema.  These videos are not specifically designed for the GP Trainer in mind, but the key messages and principles are the same. And they may well help trigger insights and thoughts for your self-development.

FAQs

Every trainer at some point has feelings of whether to leave GP training or not.,  It’s normal.  And for some of you, yes, that may well be the right decision for your particular circumstance.  After all, some GPs say that a GP needs to do something different every 7 years!  But for many of you, it may not be the right decision.   It may be that you simply feel like that because 

  1. you work-life balance has become unmanageable, 
  2. work life is a lot busier  or 
  3. you’ve not really invested in yourself in terms of GP training – it’s become a chore rather than an exciting activity.   

And all of these things make you temporarily feel that GP training is a bit dull and doesn’t excite you anymore.  But if you decided to re-nourish yourself – for example, by going on a workshop, engaging in Half Day Release, or helping out with GP School run Trainers’ seminars – that initial love for GP training will probably come back as strong as before.

So, before you hang up your hat, think carefully; be careful of prematurely throwing out something which nourishes your professional working life.  Some of us have been GP trainers for more than15 years and we still love it just as much as day one. Maybe you do too, but other things are muddying your vision?

Talk to a fellow trainer who you like – meet them for coffee or something.   See what they make of how you are feeling?  Don’t forget there are the TPDs too who are usually great listeners and advisors.

Nearly every GP training scheme up and down the UK runs Trainers’ Workshops.  Trainers’ Workshops are for GP Trainers.  The world of GP training is foreever changing and GP trainers need to keep up to date.  They also need to maintain and build on their teaching and training skills.  And of course, learn new educational skills and practice them.   Trainers’ Workshops provide a place where this can happen.   

Most schemes run 6-12 workshops a year.   If yours does not – then ask fellow trainers about setting one up collaboratively.   Trainers workshops should be run and led by the GP Trainers – it is for them after all.  Don’t be too reliant on the Training Programme Directors setting this up – otherwise the agenda for these workshops can end up being driven by the TPDs than the GP trainers collective.   

In Bradford, we run something called the 2 day Residential Trainers’ Developmental Conference (TDC).   This is in addition to the usual GP Trainers’ workshops.   This is a 2 day event every year in November.   The residential bit is optional and we fund the costs of dinner and staying over ourselves.  Deaneries/GP Schools will not usually fund a residential, but we feel that it is such an important component of the conference that we are happy to pay for it ourselves.  The main programme delivers on the formal curriculum (i.e. what we have identified as our learning needs).   But the staying over bit, enjoying meals and evening times together delivers on the hidden curriculum – learning which happens that was not originally intended but is equally important as the formal.  It also delivers on the social curriculum where bonds are formed that will hopefully continue after the conference is over.   And besides, the cost of staying over and the evening meal is a taxable allowance which means it is not as costly as you might think.  We certainly think the educational gains strongly outweigh the costs.

Actually, many GP training schemes run something similar.  It might be called the Trainers’ Time Out (TTO) and it might be a one day thing and non-residential.     If your scheme doesn’t, why not think about taking the lead and setting it up.  It really is most fun.   Here are the advantages of a Trainers Residential 2 day Development Conference…

  • It enables two days of some in depth training rather than “quick surface level” training provided by the 2-3h Trainers’ Workshops (TWs).   Remember, our 2 day conference is in addition to these Trainers’ Workshops. 
  • The residential bit helps people to connect with each other and form links with other trainers – more so than is possible with the TWs.
  • New Trainers get to meet the established ones and again, develop deeper links than is possible in the 3h Trainers’ Workshops.
  • You get to know the Training Programme Directors (TPDs) on a more personal level.
  • The fact that it is over 2 days means that one can “pick and mix” the agenda.  It doesn’t all have to be strictly educational.  There can be space for creativity, rest and fun.   An afternoon can be spent outdoors enjoying the natural environment whilst conversing with colleagues and learning both ways.
  • TPDs can have a small section where they can provide you with updates or help deliver a session to work on a common area of difficulty.
  • You can put on a variety of workshops which trainers can pick and choose.
  • The evening meals and evening social time again helps trainers network and delivers on the hidden and social curricula.
  • Everyone usually says how a 2 day residential recharges their batteries.  And even rekindle the love for GP training for those where it has been running low.

Got any suggestions or advice or comments?

Got any advice?  Anything we’ve missed?  Anything that you think is inaccurate? Any ideas of how we can improve this page?  Then leave a message below.   Got a resource to share: contact [email protected].  

Make GP Training Better Together’

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