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Course Lifetime

Get the Key Questions Form

Following are questions about course lifetime to consider as you plan your training program. There are two lists here, the first are "Key Questions:" those that you will likely need to consider early in the process. Following are "Additional Questions:" questions you may also find useful to consider. These lists are not exhaustive, and you may have additional questions.

These questions are intended to guide the process of thinking through the design of training programs and the choice of delivery method. If you click on Key Questions Form, you will find the key questions for all the factors listed. You can customize this form as well by downloading and editing it.

Key Questions:

  • How often will the training be offered in a given year?
  • Will the training be offered regularly or intermittently?
  • How will the training be kept up-to-date?

Other Questions to Consider:

Number of offerings

  • How often will the course need to be offered overall?
  • How will the number of offerings and the number of participants impact cost, location, and other factors?
  • How will the number of offerings and these impacts relate to choice of delivery method? For example, a class that is offered to 20 participants 3 times per year and does not require special materials or laboratories may be delivered through several methods (e.g., classroom with an instructor or blended). However, classes that must be provided to 200 participants every month may need to utilize an e-learning (e.g., CBT or web cast) approach.

Relevance of materials and content

  • How long will the materials be relevant to the current needs?
  • Will the goals change over time?
  • Will the learning objectives need to change often? Never?


  • How often will the course content or materials need to be updated?
  • How easily will these updates be? For example, will outside expertise be required? Will internal expertise be available?

Expected longevity of overall topic

  • Will the overall need for this topic remain the same? Change often?
  • Will the topic be useful in 5 years? Will the topic be useful in 10 years? For example, foundation communications skills may always be relevant to most MIT staff. However, a certain software program may become out-dated in one year or be replaced by a better program.
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