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Book Review - A Practical Guide to Needs Assessment

A Practical Guide to Needs Assessment

Kavita Gupta

Product Details:

ISBN: 0787939889 
Format: Hardcover, 224pp 
Pub. Date: September 1999 
Publisher: Wiley, John & Sons, Incorporated

I came across this book while looking for some new ideas on assessing training needs. I was immediately impressed with the ease of reading along with practical tools and methods.

Gupta addresses four major types of needs analysis:

  • Strategic Needs Assessment, which assesses strategic business and organizational needs
  • Competency-based Assessment, which identifies knowledge, skills and attitudes for superior job performance
  • Job and Task Analysis, which determines the responsibilities and tasks needed to perform a job
  • Training Needs Assessment, which identifies the knowledge and skills needed to perform a job
All of these assessments are needed by software test and QA managers in leading and developing teams. Perhaps even more valuable are the examples of how to construct and perform these assessments. With just a little adaptation and creativity, you can apply these techniques to other types of assessments, such as process, tool and risk assessments.

If you design and conduct training courses, then this book will be an instant toolkit for you. In addition to a complete description and analysis of the various techniques, Gupta provides all the templates and checklists you will need to get started right away in performing these assessments.

Gupta also does a very good job in providing practical advice on data gathering techniques such as surveys and interviews.

I highly recommend this book to anyone that designs or conducts any type of assessments.

Reviewer: Randy Rice

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