T&D: Demonstrating Knowledge vs Performance

It Seems To Me

That most in the L&D/T&D field are focused on Awareness and Knowledge creation.

Yes, I know that there are others who go well beyond Knowledge Solutions delivery/deployment and go for Performance:

The ability to Perform Tasks to

Produce Outputs to Stakeholder Requirements.

(Cue the green visual in your memory from hundreds of my prior blog posts.)

Proof of Knowledge

The simplest way a learner/Performer can demonstrate their Knowledge is through a quiz. In my mind a “Quiz” is a quick/shallow test. Your views might differ.

The next is a “Test” – which can range from shallow to all encompassing.

The best – yet more expensive to develop and conduct and score – is a “Talk-Through Troubleshooting” exercise. This is a testing mechanism my former business partners and I used as part of our 1987 and 1994 Performance-based Certification/Qualifications projects – where we constructed over 2000+ Performance Tests for the employees (20+ populations) at the oil fields of Prudhoe Bay and then 2000+ Performance Tests for the employees (20+ populations as well) working on the Alaska Pipeline, respectively.

In those projects we did not use any Quizzes or Tests. We only used the 3 types on the right side of the next graphic.


Proof of Performance Ability

Our 1987 project at Prudhoe Bay was the client’s third attempt at putting together a Pay Progression Program – based on Competence. The prior attempts had generated paper and pencil tests that oil field hands HATED.

And since the efforts tied to everyone’s wallet – it had everyone’s attention.


I modified my approach to CAD/MCD for this project and constructed the Training for our staff and subcontractors – and I participated in the first Analysis Team and Design Team Meetings – to prove the process. It worked.

In Design we specified the following types of Performance Tests:

  • Real Work
  • Simulated Work
  • Talk-Through Troubleshooting

These are covered in Chapter 4 of the book the late Ray Svenson – my former business partner – and I co-authored back in 2007 based on those 2 projects.

The book is available as a FREE PDF and as a Kindle and paperback – so you’ve really got no excuse for not following up and looking further at what we have provided.


Employee performance-based Qualification/Certification Systems (2007)

Click HERE to link to the download page.

Employee performance-based Qualification/Certification Systems is also available as a $15 Paperback book – and $7.50 as a Kindle – for more and to order – please go – here.

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