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The Learner Coaching Approach

This is a topic that has been increasingly on the lips of teachers (M/F) and trainers (M/F) for several years now. Indeed, Diane Sweeney, a coaching teacher in the United States, has made it her main focus, to the extent that she has written numerous books on the subject. She is partly responsible for this approach.

But what does it involve?

Student-centered coaching involves providing opportunities for a coach and teachers to work in partnership to set specific goals for each learner (M/F) and eliminate any guesswork or assumptions about their performance.

Student-centered coaching is organized by a set of practices that keep the focus firmly anchored on student learning, not just on the completion of their work. Thus, it is a systemic, benevolent approach that gives precedence to the internal resources of each individual.


• Coaching sessions are framed by specific learning objectives.

• Coaching involves regular analysis of student work.

• Supervision is guided by evidence of student learning.

• Collaboration may include co-planning and co-delivery of instruction.

• Coaching is ongoing and is done in collaboration with teachers or trainers.

• Supervision is led by the head of the institution or the person responsible for the training organization.

Student-centered coaching departs from coaching models that focus solely on the actions taken by the teacher or assume that if we improve teaching, student learning will also improve. There is a certain logic to these approaches, but by continuously pondering pedagogy and what the trainer or teacher should do, we neglect to question what students are learning or not.

According to Madeline Hunter (American Art History Professor and author): “To say you’ve taught when students haven’t learned is to say you’ve sold when no one has bought. But how do you know that students have learned without spending hours grading tests and assignments?... Check student understanding as you teach (not at 10 pm when you’re grading papers) so you don’t move forward with unlearned material that can snowball and eventually plunge the student into confusion and despair.”

As suggested by Madeline Hunter, if the goals are to graduate learners and prepare them for the professional world, trainers need knowledge, skills, and support to bridge the ever-persistent gap between what is taught and what is learned. It is therefore up to the coaches to help teachers move away from traditional teaching and teach students to deeply connect and respond to what they learn. Learning is at the core of student-centered coaching.

What tools are used in this coaching approach?

• NLP (Neuro-Linguistic Programming)

• Neuro-pedagogy

• Emotional intelligence

• Stress management

• Inclusive interventions.

This method is taught in the course "Professional trainer for Adult"

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