RE: Fear and Loathing at the Job Site

Subject: RE: Fear and Loathing at the Job Site
From: "Jim Shaeffer" <jims -at- spsi -dot- com>
To: "TECHWR-L" <techwr-l -at- lists -dot- raycomm -dot- com>
Date: Thu, 8 May 2003 11:18:42 -0400

My first encounter with the concept of an SME (Subject
Matter Expert) came in a training environment. We worked
with experts (they had advanced degrees) in Instructional
System Design who relied on SMEs for the content of the
courses being developed. The ISD experts chunked the content,
created the learning objectives and tests and shaped the
course material. It was vital to the functioning of the
project team that everyone's expertise be respected.
Did it work?
Well, by contract, the course material had to be validated.
That is, a certain percentage of the students who took the
resulting course had to pass the test.

Jim Shaeffer (jims -at- spsi -dot- com)

----snip of Original Message-----
> From: Diane Newbury [mailto:dnewbury -at- execpc -dot- com]

who quoted Andrew Plato:
> >>The biggest problem in the tech writing profession is that
> a large chunk of the profession honestly believes they
> can remain totally content-ignorant and be
> accomplished and effective technical communicators. And these
> folks preach this BS to other writers, who fall lock-step
> inline with this stupidity. <<

and then commented:
> The most common and most frustrating comment that I hear
> again and again is: "A good trainer can train anything."
> This is usually interpreted to mean that the trainer does
> not need to know anything about what they are training --
> "good" training techniques are all they need,
> or so a large number of these folks truly believe.


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