This was a question on LinkedIn. When it comes to learning, there are a lot of options. You'll want to choose the way that you learn best in order for the training to be most effective for you.
Get the books
The Arbortext Monster Garage book series is for anyone looking to do it themselves. If you learn best by reading, this is your best option.
- Arbortext 101: Best Practices for Configuring, Authoring, Styling, and Publishing with Arbortext (Arbortext Monster Garage #1)
- Arbortext 102: Best Practices for Creating Arbortext Styler Stylesheets (Arbortext Monster Garage #2)
PTC eLearning & product tutorial
- Buy a copy of the product you want to learn (Editor, Styler, IsoDraw are the usual suspects here). All of the Arbortext products ship with Tutorials covering nearly all the things that any user wants to do with the product. It also ships with all the manuals for the product. Manuals are many and big (200 pg average, 5-6 manuals). If you learn best by tutorial, this is a great option.
- Get a subscription to the eLearning Library. All of the Certified PTC Courses have been recorded and broken into segments. Courses are updated when new releases come out. You can watch the courses as often as you want and you get updates to all the classes as part of your subscription. There are product specific libraries such as "Arbortext eLearning", "Arbortext IsoDraw eLearning", and "Arbortext Content Manager eLearning". If you learn best by video, this is a great option.
Mentoring conference calls with an Arbortext Expert is best if you learn best from a live person. The primary goal of the mentoring relationship is to transfer knowledge from our senior staff to yours in order to develop technical competency in your staff.
Mentoring can be an accelerated or customized version of the Certified PTC course that is focused on you and your needs.
Think of mentoring like going to your Teaching Assistant (TA). Your TA keeps you on track with your learning, answers the questions that you can't ask a video, helps you complete the exercises, or goes more in-depth on the video topics as they apply to your business and your needs. You advisor uses conference calls or desktop sharing to work on your system and your environment.
This can be anything you want it to be. Our team is there to help you and to focus on your needs, your business requirements.
"We are killing this job and I attribute most of that to the training that you provided us. I feel like there is nothing I can't do." - Steve W.
When you combine PTC eLearning with Mentoring
The most cost-effective and efficient option available.
Mentoring gives you access to a live person and eLearning gives you access to an instructional video that you can watch as often as you want.
You can't ask questions of a video. You can use your mentoring time efficiently and ask your mentor specific questions about what you couldn't quite understand in the video (or that the video didn't cover with respect to your specific situation). You can use your mentoring time to go beyond the books we wrote to address specific styling or authoring requirements for you and your customers.
Instructor-led, product training
Live, instructor-led, training from an experienced professional, who is qualified to teach Arbortext, can't be beat. You can't ask a video questions and there's no one on the other end who can check your homework or provide feedback.
PTC has Training Partners and consider their certified training courses as PTC products. As such, you can purchase them from any PTC VAR. However, not all PTC VARs who sell Arbortext are qualified to support it. For a list of qualified Arbortext VAR partners, see "Everything Arbortext In One Place". In addition, for these classes to actually be held, they require a class be running already, or have enough people enrolled to make it cost-effective for PTC or the partner to run the class (typically, minimum of 5 students).
In 2022, we started offering public deliveries of our most popular training: Arbortext Editor, Arbortext Styler, Advanced Topics, DITA, and MIL-STD. Our classes are always live, virtual, and instructor-led with an emphasis on exercises and homework. We run our classes regardless of whether one person signs up or 10 people do, so you can know you're going to get the training you need when you need it. See our Public Calendar for specific delivery dates.
The Arbortext Community is very large and extremely active. There's a list of all community resources. You'll have to piece a lot of things together, as these resources are usually answering questions from individuals asking about specific problems.
We keep a list of community resources. There are two major mailing lists with archives that date back to the mid 90s. There's an open source code repository. There's a user group that meets monthly. There are community groups on Facebook and LinkedIn, etc. If you learn best by absorbing what's going on around you or DIY, then there are a world of resources out there for you to take advantage of.
If you have time to wait to get an answer back, you might find your answer here.
arbortext editor, best practices, training and mentoring