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Responsive facilitation is a type of formal learning technique that demands a person to assume a variety of roles and more so, be comfortable with diverse methodologies. In this regard, the entities that are involved, i.e. the facilitator and the students go through the learning process together by following particular patterns of learning. Notably, the learners are required in such a case to perform every task they are taught, follow the instructions that are laid down and listen to criticism when it is given out. On the other hand, the facilitator in this case is required to assume multiple roles that must be executed perfectly. For instance, one must be able to assume the role of a coach, a counselor, a critic or a consultant, one at a time. According to Keenan & Braxton-Brown (1991), a person in the teaching position is required to take on multiple personalities that are critical in assisting him or her to be able to meet the target as a facilitator (p.2).

The article 'Techniques: Coach, Consultant, Critic, Counselor: The Multiple Roles of the Responsive Facilitator' by Thomas P. Keenan and Greg Braxton-Brown is among the articles that has written on responsive facilitation. This article examines different issues that are involved in responsive learning and in particular the ability of the facilitator to assume different personalities; that is a coach, a critic, a counselor and a consultant without losing focus in an adult learning environment. Needless to say, the authors of this article observe that this kind of learning is helpful in reducing the number of student dropout from those courses that are deemed to be more technical. The articles them goes ahead to define in details the most common assumed roles, e.g. the coach, critic, consultant and counselor. In this respect, the article centers on their respective required roles. Finally, the article ends with two important factors that must always be considered in responsive facilitation. These factored as mentioned in the article are; authenticity and credibility, and how juggling of roles should not at all erode away these factors.


There are various important issues that can be identified with the article 'Techniques: Coach, Consultant, Critic, Counselor: The Multiple Roles of the Responsive Facilitator' by Thomas P. Keenan and Greg Braxton-Brown. To begin with, the articles present the issues of responsive facilitation by identifying various roles that are need to be played by the facilitator in order to achieve his or her target in propagating learning among students. As a way of analyzing the teachers' methods that are available in the teaching fraternity, this articles present multiples roles that need to be adopted by teachers in order to be effective in presenting their materials to the students. In line with this, a teacher that accesses this article is able to associate with this and identify various areas of his work where he or she has excelled while at the same time identifying weak points in their teaching roles. For instance, these authors identified critic as one of the most important factors when one is given the task of being a teacher in this kind of teaching technique.

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It is important to note that the technique of responsive facilitation in teaching is very important in the learning process. According to Schnurr & Holtz (1998), responsive facilitation is critical to successful learning (p.61). In this regard, the authors of this article successfully draw out the importance of this learning or rather teaching technique in the learning environment. The importance of this technique as brought out by the authors of this article is revealed in their identification of the fact that responsive facilitation has been found to reduce course dropout rates among students. The authors too are able to recognize important factors that promote this type of learning, i.e. creation of a favorable environment that stimulates learning among students.

It must be realized that most students drop out of school or from some courses, not because of the inability to learn but as a result of the fact that the existing environment does not in any way promote learning. On the other hand, the ability to concentrate on individual issues and work of different groups played a key role in the success of responsive facilitation. In reference to Higgins et al. (2005), a major issue in shifting practice is fostering teachers' interpretation of core principles of a project in ways that ensure both the integrity of the principles and the contextual factors impacting on classroom implementation are privileged (p.72). This means that there are principles that have to be adhered in the classroom environment to promote learning. The authors of this article have been to emphasize on this.

Keenan & Braxton-Brown (1991) are able to identify the important issues that promote learning. Among them is the fact that when playing particular roles, such as the coach, there are specific tasks that one has to perform in order to be effective. For instance, Keenan & Braxton-Brown (1991) argues that as a coach, one needs to encourage, guide and when necessary, correct gently (p.3). Identification of the individual factors that are required under this kind of learning technique is critical since this article was directed at people in a learning environment who may have required guidance on the roles as responsive facilitators.

This article is well divided and arranged in a way that is possible to follow. Notably, the authors of this article ensured that there were important signposts to direct the audience. Therefore, important subtitles are used to show the audience that the authors were moving no to the next topic. In this regard, it was easy for the audience to identify critical areas that he or she was interested in. On the other hand, the authors begin by laying down a significant framework that was aimed to introducing the audience to what they were going to discuss in the article. Therefore, the teaching practices that are utilized under responsive facilitation are clearly mentioned before delving into each one at a time and critically describing what is required by each.  

There are various weaknesses that have been identified in the articles. To begin, it is important to understand that this article was directed at a learning environment that was composed of the adult students in adult education. However, the authors of this article failed to identify significant challenges that an adult learning environment experienced. In its place, the article explores different roles that responsive facilitators need to play when they act as coaches, critics, counselors or consultants. Whereas these roles were important, the articles failed to take note of the fact that there might be other challenges that arose in such an environment that did not require the roles that are defined in this article.

On the other hand, taking into account the weight that adult learning carries in the contemporary society, there is need for a thorough research to be carried out to emerge with clearer proposals on the effective way that responsive facilitators can use to meet their target. However, this article shows no sign that there was any research that was carried out. Instead, the article is mainly based on the authors' experience in the computer science (Personal author, compiler, or editor name(s); click on any author to run a new search on that name.Keenan & Braxton-Brown, 1991).

The name assigned to the document by the author. This field may also contain sub-titles, series names, and report numbers.Having experience does not necessarily guarantee that one has enough information to be able to make proposals without referring to other work of research that have been carried out before or that is underway. Therefore, one can easily conclude that this article is more inclined towards becoming a personal opinion rather a piece or research.

On the other hand, there is a thin separation line on the four teaching practices that were identified. Much of this can be attributed to the fact that there was little research that was carried out by the authors. Instead, they depended on what they had observed and their experience to come up with the article. For instance, both the coach and the critic give back feedbacks to students. However, it is not well defined whether the kind of feedback that is given by the coach and the critic is different from each other. Additionally, it is not clearly outlined how one can play assume different roles or rather personalities interchangeably without compromising with the standards of learning.

There is also a failure by the author to factor in opposing views or rather contradicting opinions of other professionals in a learning environment. Instead, the authors look at two qualities that are deemed important in responsive facilitation-kind of learning environment. This comes at the end of the articles and thus acts as weak conclusion that is employed by the authors. Additionally, there is no proposal for further research in this area.

In summation, it can be argued out that this article is an important article in the learning environment since it acts as an eye-opener to responsive facilitator that need to assume different roles or personality in delivering their teaching services. More important is the fact that the article is readable and easy to follow, and can provide a background information on responsive facilitation. However, this article cannot be used as a research article due to the fact that the information that it contains in mainly based on personal opinions. More so, this information is not backed up with extensive research to authenticate these opinions.

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