For each topic, here are some questions to respond to:
Part D – Field training: 1 year
Ways to organise
These can involve a mentoring situation, with clearly spelled out educational parameters and learning goals. It could include working in a project and receiving support and supervision.
Action learning projects
Ways to organise
Action learning involves cycles of reflection, planning, action, and review, in a continuous pattern. How can this be incorporated into the 4th stage of training
Part E – Post graduate training: 1 year
This program is quite comprehensive. Nevertheless, it's a generalist education. There are many further skills required in the performance of different roles, and in relation to different projects.
For instance, there are many further managerial knowledge and skills required, especially if running a large project.
Some acaryas may be interested in developing their skills in a specific field. For instance, studying homeopathy.
Such study is always expensive – in terms of time, and often money. Its an investment in being able to offer more in the future.
Ananda Marga has traditionally been very action oriented, with less focus on long skill development and preparation periods. Times are changing, and if we are to become a more professional organisation, perhaps our values around this need to change.
But this is a discussion that needs to occur, with a range of viewpoints presented about what this means on the ground. Are individual margiis, or units, or local regions, or Sectorial offices etc willing to actually support acaryas who are engaged in further training, and therefore less available for day to day work
Or should all such training be part time
Discussion on assessment and progression
What kind of assessment process should be performed before trainees are admitted to TC
Who does the assessing in the different units of study
Assessment is labour intensive – how much is it ok to use forms of self assessment
How are fails dealt with in trainee’s study process
What are exit points, where its clear that someone is not able or ready to develop sufficient competency.
How will subjective assessments of trainee’s personal and spiritual development be carried out
Discussion on teaching-learning methodologies
In vivo vs. distance learning
Self directed learning vs. being taught
Reading and self study vs. discussion and dialogue
Learning in the TC setting vs. internships and action learning projects
The utilisation of written resources, and limitations of that form of learning
The development and utilisation of video resources
Internet utilisation as a part of teaching-learning
Catering to individual learning styles – how much is it possible, how can it be done
Memorisation and demonstration of content knowledge – how much of this is required, and limitations of memorisation based learning.
How to cope with different entry levels of skills and knowledge
How to structure group learning; issues of people at different entry points, and when and how group learning will take place. Units involving group study need to have allocated time for the study process; the issue of individuals having different learning pace’s within that, needs to be addressed.
Comparative amount of time allowed for units.
Order units are taught in.
What kind of support is needed in the learning process, and how this can be provided
TC schedule: weighting of time to competing priorities – individual spiritual practice, group spiritual practice, domestic duties, personal space, individual study time, group study time, extra-TC activities.
The study schedule also needs to address the weighting of study time spent in explicitly spiritual units, and other units.
Discussion on TC viability
What are the overhead costs of running a TC.
What are the per trainee costs, both basic maintenance and study costs.
How should TC’s be funded.
Should entering trainees be asked for a contribution.
If trainees participate in fundraising activities during training, what should be the parameters of these.
I am happy to chat with anyone about how this could happen. I don't have a particular position or direct power in Ananda Marga (or any sub or splinter groups)' my role is to provoke discussion, introduce ideas, and be part of the change I want to see. If you want to contact me about this, email: firstname.lastname@example.org