Sunday, July 13, 2014

ASTD Certification - What is the Key to Creating a Successful CPLP Work Product Submission? - ASK Trish: CPLP Work Product Candidate Q&A


Q: I'm starting to put my CPLP Work Product submission together. I have a lot of work samples ("evidence") and a lot that I could write about in my essay responses.

How do I make sure I put together a submission that meets the requirements the Raters are looking for?


A: It's a valid question, especially since CPLP Work Product is about OBVIOUSLY DEMONSTRATING your ability to apply the ASTD competencies to your work.

The Raters look for your submission to contain very specific elements; elements they have outlined on the Scoring Rubric they use to assess ("rate") submissions.

This means, as a candidate, you must create a very focused, cohesive submission that obviously aligns to ATD CI requirements; a submission the Raters can easily read and score in less than 40 minutes.

That is the KEY to a successful CPLP Work Product submission, it:
  • is easy to read
  • is easy to rate
  • obviously meet requirements

Great! Now, HOW do you do that?

A successful submission requires you to know WHAT the Raters are looking for (see the CPLP Certification Handbook for the "WHAT"), and then to understand HOW to apply it to your submission.

I teach CPLP candidates how to apply the CPLP Certification Handbook ("Handbook") to their submission using a step-by-step, systematic approach in the Owl's Ledge CPLP Work Product online course

The first assignment I give candidates to do helps them visualize their entire submission. 

I do this by reconnecting them with the "BIG PICTURE" for their Area of Expertise (AOE) using a Mind Map. 


Candidates often need to be reminded of the competencies that make-up their AOE; the very same competencies they were tested on as part of the CPLP Knowledge Exam.

Once you are reminded of - at a high level, end-to-end - what competencies are in your AOE (and, therefore, need to be demonstrated in your submission), then you can determine what work samples ("evidence") to include and what, specifically, to write about in your essay responses.

The Key to creating a focused submission: 

Understand what your whole submission needs to contain before you even begin the process of putting the pieces together - e.g. compiling work samples and writing essay responses.

Get started by drawing a Mind Map of your AOE.

Drawing a Mind Map helps you visualize the BIG PICTURE of your submission. 

It follows the "begin with the end in mind" adage - by visually representing what the end result should look like.

You can then refer to your Mind Map while you're creating your submission, to make sure you are focused on the right things (words and work samples) as you go!

Here's an example Mind Map I created for Training Delivery to illustrate:

In my Mind Map above, I grouped the Training Delivery Key Actions according to the Training Delivery Key Action Categories. I also color coded each category to make the groupings even more obvious.

To read my Mind Map, start by looking at the blue boxes on the right and then read clockwise all the way around to the red boxes on the left. 

It's an easy visualization, from start to finish, of all of the (high level) elements a candidate must include in a Training Delivery submission.

Makes it easy to see, yes?

Now - try applying this mind mapping technique to your Area of Expertise.

You'll benefit in two (2) critical ways:
  1. You'll have an illustration, like the one above, that you can reference as you put your submission together to make sure you're focused on what matters most.
  2. The very act of creating a Mind Map stimulates your brain in a way that facilitates comprehension and retention. Just the act of drawing the Mind Map will help you better understand your submission.
(Even if you're a Training Delivery candidate, draw your own Mind Map, instead of just using mine. You want to stimulate your brain too!)

BTW - the free online tool I used to create this mind map is:

Yes, this is one of many techniques and shortcuts I've created to help candidate really connect with CPLP Work Product expectations.

What are some of your tips and tricks?

Share them in the blog COMMENTS below!

To your success!

~ trish 

No comments: