Table Of ContentsNext Page

APEN 2001 International Conference

Toowoomba, 4th-5th October 2001

Hot Topic No


Final Title of Topic

Professional development for change agents; novices and community facilitators

Name of Leader

Graham Harris

Names of Participants

Sarah Hood, Pete Stephen, Julie Ferguson, Jessica Kenway, Paul O’Hare, Chris Jones, Merrin Brown, Rob Nielsen, Greg Cook, Warren Vaschina, Nicole McLennan, Sam Simpson, Noel Ainsworth, Penny Floyd, Jason Trompf, Dale Williams, Ashley Sewell, Ingrid Christiansen, Glen Millar, Graham Harris

The Desired Outcome

Opportunities for Personal Development and/or Professional Development Enhanced

Problems Identified

  • System of succession planning for extension professionals
  • Need to break down barriers about “development” between organizations, managers and teams
  • Need for cross pollination of ideas between “extension” professionals from a range of backgrounds
  • Need to be more effective in our learning (constraints on this are time and cost)
  • There needs to be better communication between supervisors and their staff about “development”
  • There needs to be recognition of professional/personal development by agencies and employers
  • We need to take responsibility for our own learning
  • Different types of “training” are not identified:
  • Realising what to expect from activities
  • Don’t know what is available
  • Recognising transferable competence
  • Different levels of training not identified:
  • Timeliness
  • Current relevance
  • Time required (a week long residential course is too long)
  • Professional development training is not factored into funding programs and employment tenure
  • Where do people outside government agencies go for professional/personal development or to get competencies needed

Full Action Plan to achieve that Outcome

What needs to be done

By When

By Whom


Identify existing training and networks.

Develop a contact list of past participants to discuss “development” options available.

Be responsible for your own development/learning

April 2002

APEN – (FarmBis Co-ordinator can be used to assist in this)

Develop Action Learning Set for personal support for ongoing learning and development

From Oct 2001


Engage supervisors and managers in personal planning and succession planning.

From Oct 2001

Sarah Hood & David Sparks



Determine Competencies for Extension

Oct 2001

APEN to investigate

Use Web to expand existing APEN list of resources in different areas of extension competency to add details of courses (1 page introduction to an area of competency – 1 day courses, 1 week courses and different opportunities for development), commercial resources and opportunities for professional development.



Get recognised professionals within APEN to expose this


Competency List of resources with Frequently Asked Questions within a Competency Area


Glen Millar

Need list of people from a training/development course so that new people can access them



Lobby employers to recognise training and professional development.



National framework to help show what courses, experiences are likely to contribute to particular levels of competency.



Specialised training based on needs of extensionists – short courses:

  • Technical
  • Process
  • How do you apply scientific methods to extension

APEN Commissioned

Joint venture in human capacity with funding bodies



  • resources required (identify funding, people, time, etc)
  • Web page could be used for comments on “training” by past participants.
  • How will progress be communicated?
  • Use discussion list as mechanism for information transfer.

Previous PageTop Of PageNext Page