How Research Moves into Practice: A Preliminary Study of What Training Professionals Read, Hear, and Perceive

  • Saul Carliner Concordia University
  • Regan Legassie Canadian Forces Joint Support Group
  • Shaun Belding Belding Group of Companies
  • Hugh MacDonald HR MacDonald: Training and Development, Inc.
  • Ofelia Ribeiro Concordia University
  • Lynn Johnston Canadian Society for Training and Development
  • Jane MacDonald Canadian Society for Training and Development
  • Heidi Hehn

Abstract

Abstract In the growing body of research on the practice of training and development, several studies suggest that use of research-based findings in practice is low. The present study was designed to better understand the research-practice gap by exploring these questions: (1) Which published sources in the field are practicing professionals reading? How frequently do they read these materials? (2) Which conferences and meetings do practicing professionals attend? How frequently do they attend these events? (3) In what formats are research content most usable to practicing professionals? (4) What are practicing professionals’ general perceptions of research publications and presentations? Key findings point to publications having a wider reach among practicing professionals than conferences and, of those publications, professional magazines have a wider reach than peer-reviewed journals. In terms of the manner in which the content is presented, practicing professionals prefer case studies from the workplace over other types of content. Résumé : Dans le corpus croissant de recherches portant sur la pratique de la formation et du perfectionnement, plusieurs études suggèrent une faible utilisation des résultats de recherche dans la pratique. La présente étude a été conçue afin de mieux comprendre l’écart entre la recherche et la pratique par l’examen des questions suivantes : (1) Quelles sources de publications du domaine les professionnels pratiquants lisent-ils? À quelle fréquence lisent-ils ces publications? (2) À quelles conférences et réunions les professionnels pratiquants assistent-ils? À quelle fréquence assistent-ils à ces événements? (3) Dans quels formats les contenus de recherche sont-ils le plus facilement utilisables par les professionnels pratiquants? (4) Quelles sont les perceptions générales des professionnels pratiquants envers les publications et présentations de recherche? Les résultats principaux indiquent que les publications rejoignent davantage de professionnels pratiquants que les conférences et que, parmi ces publications, les magazines spécialisés ont une portée plus vaste que les publications évaluées par les pairs. En ce qui concerne la manière dont le contenu est présenté, les professionnels pratiquants préfèrent les études de cas en milieu de travail aux autres types de contenu.

Author Biographies

Saul Carliner, Concordia University
Saul Carliner is an Associate Professor of Educational Technology at Concordia University and a member of the board of the Canadian Society for Training and Development. Correspondence regarding this article can be addressed to: saulcarliner@gmail.com
Regan Legassie, Canadian Forces Joint Support Group
Regan Legassie is Commandant of Training for the Canadian Forces Joint Support Group and a member of the board of the Canadian Society for Training and Development.
Shaun Belding, Belding Group of Companies
Shaun Belding is CEO of the Belding Group of Companies and a member of the board of the Canadian Society for Training and Development.
Hugh MacDonald, HR MacDonald: Training and Development, Inc.
Hugh MacDonald is Principal in HR MacDonald: Training and Development, Inc. and a Chair of the board of the Canadian Society for Training and Development.
Ofelia Ribeiro, Concordia University
Ofelia Ribeiro is a PhD student at Concordia University.
Lynn Johnston, Canadian Society for Training and Development
Lynn Johnston is President of the Canadian Society for Training and Development.
Jane MacDonald, Canadian Society for Training and Development
Jane MacDonald is the Manager of Marketing and Events of the Canadian Society for Training and Development.
Heidi Hehn
Heidi Hehn was Membership Coordinator of the Canadian Society for Training and Development at the time this article was written.
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