LOCSU's Peer Discussion Facilitation Training - what did delegates learn?

12 December 2012

 Peer Discussion Group Facilitator Training Days

We  received huge interest in our training days for facilitators and it’s very encouraging to see so many LOC members attend the course with a view to supporting registrants in their local optical communities via peer discussion groups.

In total we delivered seven training days in the Autumn. 

During the training day, delegates explore the purpose of peer discussion and the role of the facilitator and most importantly practice their facilitation skills with a group using case studies prepared for us by the College of Optometrists and ABDO.  Reflecting on their key learning from the day delegates have cited the importance of:

1.  Agreeing ground rules with participants

2.   Giving themselves enough time to prepare the cases to ensure learning outcomes are achieved

3.  Remembering the primary responsibility as facilitator is to enable the group to have a positive learning experience rather than expressing their own views 

There is a huge temptation for facilitators to get stuck into the clinical discussion, especially when the topic is within their own expertise, and forget that the role is essentially an enabling role and not a teaching role.

The College of Optometrists have produced a couple of very useful guidance documents on peer discussion and facilitating groups and these can be downloaded from the College website under the tab CPD materials.

We are hoping to offer further days next year and will circulate information as soon as available.

If you have any questions of comments please contact Gill Brabner gillbrabner@locsu.co.uk

Comments from delegates:

‘Excellent – learned a lot even though I would consider myself an experienced peer review facilitator’

‘Really informative and exceeded expectations’

‘very well delivered – feel much more confident in facilitating now’

‘very well organised and presented, process of peer review much clearer

‘great experience gained by active participation – fantastic!’

‘I can’t wait to get started – with renewed enthusiasm’

‘good day that alleviated my anxiety as to whether I can actually facilitate’

‘excellent and engaging’

‘really useful to have the practical session to take on the role and get honest constructive feedback from the group’

‘excellent course’

‘excellent course, well run, especially liked the interactive session which allowed us to practice the relevant skills’

‘this has given me the confidence to run and organise peer review’

‘At no point did I feel disengaged or lose focus.  I felt the structure of the day kept the energy high and our interest up – even after lunch!’

‘I have learnt there is a lot more to peer group facilitation that just turning up.  Pre-planning is a  must!’

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