The conventional way of teaching technical courses is to teach people what to think and how to do something, then give them an exercise to test their newly acquired skill.
After many years of teaching technical courses, Greg has learned that he learns most while he is researching the course materials, creating the exercises and teaching the course. None of the trainees get a chance to do this. They just get presented with a manual and follow instructions.
So why not teach the trainees how to think and learn how to do their own research, gather their own ideas, organise them in a logical and memorable way, then use their newly acquired knowledge and skills to solve real problems. This is called enquiry-based learning.
The proposed 5 day workshop would focus on one chosen discipline. The options offered by Greg are:
- Clastic and Carbonate Sedimentology and Reservoir Geology
- Sequence and Seismic Stratigraphy
- Formation Evaluation / Petrophysics / Wireline Log Interpretation
Having chosen the theme of the workshop, the workshop will run as follows:
Session1: Critical Thinking – An Introduction to the fundamentals of critical thinking and critical thinking skills, as outlined in the Critical Thinking for Geoscience Course
Session 2: Define The Learning Path – Under the guidance of Greg, the trainees will brainstorm what the chosen discipline is, why we study it and how we study it. The deliverable from the process is a prioritized list of what we need to know and why we need to know it. This is the learning path. This session will provide ample opportunity to test research, knowledge management, communication, planning and prioritisation skills.
Days 2 – 5:
The remaining 4 days of the workshop will be taken up following the Research – Learn – Manage – Test path for each of the key subjects defined in the learning path.
Trainees will work in teams researching each subject, gathering key papers and references from websites and wikis, all under the direction of Greg. They will create key illustrations, well annotated, explaining the concepts, the fundamentals and the analytical methods, which is one of the best ways to learn. Then the teams will compile their newly acquired documents and illustrations and and in doing so learn about knowledge management. Then the trainees will test their comprehension by teaching each other. Having gained the knowledge and skills, the second half of the session will focus on applying the skills to solve real problems provided by Greg.