People skills / Effective communication

People skills are the ability to deal with, influence, and communicate effectively with other people. Effective communication is the key.

Whatever knowledge an instructor may have is useless if the instructor can’t communicate it effectively to a student.

Effective instructors are enthusiastic about the subject they teach and are always willing to find ways to match student learning styles to personal teaching styles.

Effective Communication

Effective communication is measured by the similarity between the idea transmitted by the instructor and the idea received by the student.

Asking questions will help determine if understanding has occurred.

Effective communication is essential for effective instruction.

An instructor should always strive to develop more effective communication skills.

  • Don’t use complicated jargon, slang, or acronyms. Speak to students at their level of understanding.
  • Express what needs to happen rather than what doesn’t need to happen. “Keep running” vs. “Don’t sit.”
  • Explain how and why something should be done. Ensure the student knows the reasons behind the actions expected of them.
  • Pay attention to body language. Is your student listening?
  • Good questioning can determine how well the student understands what is being taught. 
  • Ask focused, open-ended questions (how/why) and avoid closed-ended questions (yes/no).