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About

ICCOTP is open to all training professionals who need to conduct training in a live, online format, and who want to provide participants and students with the best possible online learning experience. Certified Online Training Professionals (COTPs) span every industry and organizational type: healthcare, financial services, government, nonprofits, manufacturing, insurance, and more. Whether it is distance learning in an educational institution setting, a professional webinar for hundreds of participants, or an intensive workshop honing job knowledge and professional skills, the need is there for talented, effective, consistent, and professional online trainers.

ICCOTP was founded to promote standards of excellence in delivering online training in a wide variety of formats. As companies and organizations increasingly work on a global scale, the ability to offer consistent, high-quality training to learners and participants in far-flung geographical locations has become imperative. Synchronous, instructor-led, online training, together with blended learning and social learning techniques, is an important component of nearly every training and development effort today.

Online training differs from classroom training in a number of significant ways. First, the technological requirements are significant. Computers, backup computers, microphones, speakers, headsets, webcams, multiple images on screen, and the variety of Internet services and limitations add a layer of technology that goes far beyond the audiovisual equipment used in classroom training. Second, classroom methodology must be changed and adapted to work in the online environment. Promoting participation, discussion, and even just sustained attention can be a challenge. Handouts, slides and other visuals, written exercises, and group work must all be handled in new and different ways. It is not a given that even an excellent classroom instructor will automatically be successful online.

The goal of ICCOTP is to help training and development professionals, and the training profession as a whole, bridge that gap. By promoting high standards for quality online training worldwide, the COTP certification process aims to ensure that training events and classes offered online provide high-quality, memorable, enjoyable, and, most of all, effective learning experiences to participants and students, as a key part of every comprehensive learning and development solution.

ICCOTP was founded by training professionals who were early adopters of online training and who have become successful through vast experience in the online training environment. Most of the council members have been providing training online since the early 2000s, and have found that success in this field is not always a given. Collectively, the council has learned to overcome the many setbacks that can interfere with online training: equipment failures, technological glitches, fire drills and evacuations, illness, power outages, poor connectivity, inadequate audio connections, and even inappropriate participant behavior. And that is not to even mention choking on a potato chip and almost losing consciousness while teaching an online class. All of these experiences have provided a deep pool of knowledge from which to share. And our own experiences of sitting through or hearing reports of unsuccessful online training—sessions that were boring, unclear, ineffective, or worse—convinced us of the need for standards and training for presenters online.

We hope that you will join us in maintaining standards of excellence in online training by starting the process of obtaining your COTP certification today. And don’t forget to ask your instructors about that potato chip.