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The GROW Model

    A simple but powerful framework for coaching is the GROW model (Whitmore, 2002). The model is not strictly linear and the coaching conversation can begin at any of the stages, depending on the situation.  The stages of the GROW model are:


    Goals. Talk about what your student/client wants to achieve as an outcome. Ensure that each goal is specific and well defined, measurable so they can tell when it has been achieved, realistic so that it can be completed with the available resource; and owned by the student/client, so that they have commitment to it.


    Reality. Explore where your student/client is now compared to where they want to be. Again encourage them to be specific and realistic and ask questions that challenge them to really review their situation.


    Options. Once your student/client is clear where they are and where they are trying to get to, you can encourage them to examine the options available. Here is it useful to get them to explore all avenues, even those that may seem less promising initially. What are the pros and cons of each option? What has worked successfully in the past?


    What or Way forward. Here you ask your student/client to identify what are the specific actions required to move forward with the chosen option in order to achieve the goal. The way forward needs to be one that the student/client can commit to and feel comfortable progressing.


    A framework such as GROW can underpin any conversation where the aim is to help a student/client move forward to resolve a problem, whether a relatively small short term issue or a broader, more significant one.


    Example questions for each stage of a supervison conversation with a student using GROW are given in Box 1. These can be easily adapted to other contexts.



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