[Bf-education] Re: Trainer Certification Entry (Dolf Veenvliet)

Jason van Gumster jason at handturkeystudios.com
Fri Apr 20 21:39:24 CEST 2007


All of these are good points, but I think the overwhelming thrust right
now is that we're battling an enormous amount of static inertia.  These
points, as well as the ones LetterRip brought up are fantastic
suggestions for the certification program... once we get the ball
rolling.  There are a couple specific things you wrote which I'd like
to address:

> To clarify: How can one judge whether someone is a good educator from
> what they have written? Certainly they might be good at "online
> education/documentation" but it says nothing about their skills in
> front of the classroom. This is also my biggest question to all of
> you. Where certification is concerned, how do we judge this? Is it
> even possible for any of us to find out if someone we haven't seen
> teach, is a good teacher?

This is definitely an important question.  And it also raises another
question: what are people going to use these certifications for?
in-person training? web training?  I know that my primary interest is
in training in meatspace.  I question how valuable it would be to have
Blender Foundation Certified web tutorials.

If the idea is to have more educators in classrooms, then this question
about judging someone's teaching ability is definitely key.  I can
think of only 3 solutions:

  1. Assume the best based on evaluations of the applicant's online
       material and [eventually] exam results.
  2. Require applicants to video tape themselves in a teaching situation
  3. Something more complex and require a bit more infrastructure and
       organization (I'll get to this one in a bit :)

> I am personally also for a Certificate not being limited by time
> constraints. Keeping track of teachers and making sure that they are
> still active would be a real pain. I'd say once someone is certified,
> they stay that way. But perhaps I see certification more as a
> "degree" in stead of simply the "backing of the foundation".

As mifune pointed out, I think this might be unrealistic considering
the speed at which Blender is developed.  Maybe an annual renewal might
be too short of a time, but indefinite certification seems like a bad

Ideally, I think it would be good to get things moving by establishing
a bare-bones generalized certification program, good for people
creating online/video content as well as those teaching in a classroom
setting.  These "ground-floor" people can form the basis of the
Certification Team, charged with further developing the certification
program.  Part of the evolution of this program will possibly involve
creating specialized certifications for various skills and/or different
forms of teaching (i.e. meatspace certification, tutorial
certification, video certification, etc.).  For certifying educators
who will be teaching in person, the ideal situation would be for our
Certification Team to be large enough and geographically spread out
enough that a team member could give a personal evaluation of an
in-person applicant.  Of course, this is what I was talking about when
I said complex and requiring more infrastructure... so that's
definitely something for further down the road.

But, all of this can't happen until we break this inertia.  Let's get a
first group of certifications out.  I've got $50 ready to go :).  The
only question I have is whether or not there should be a limited number
of accepted certifications in this first round (or perhaps the $50 fee
will be enough to dissuade all but those who are absolutely serious
about this?).

Okay... there's my long reply.


More information about the Bf-education mailing list