Students at the centre of a virtuous circle: effective minimalist training through strong staff-student partnerships

Jeni Brown, Nedelin Velikov


Active learning has been shown to be effective in several knowledge areas and with participants from novices to experts in the field being studied. Within the field of IT training, the principles of minimalist training complement the tenets of active learning to put the user (or learner) at the centre of learning design and to encourage active, exploratory behaviours in the creation of knowledge and competence. Despite this, guided or directive training is still a common mode for taught or self-study interventions for developing digital skills.

This research examines whether a combination of minimalist instructional design and existing staff-student partnerships could create a more engaging, successful and cost-effective training programme compared to the previous guided training programme. The results show that not only did the minimalist design improve participant satisfaction and engagement, but the role of the Student Training Advisors became an essential element of the programme’s success, mitigating or eliminating several of the potential difficulties of designing effective minimalist instruction and strengthening some of the key elements that make it effective.


active learning; minimalist training; error recovery; IT Training; digital skills; digital fluency; staff-student partnership; instructional design; learning theory; computer training

Full Text:




  • There are currently no refbacks.

Creative Commons License
This work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial-NoDerivatives 4.0 International License.