Tips for trainers: the Snowball technique (PLA 54)

Journal (part) article
PDF (138.53 KB)
Published: April 2006
Participatory Learning and Action
Product code:G02963
Source publication:
Participatory Learning and Action 54 – Mapping for change: practice, technologies and communication

This article describes the Snowball technique. This method was used at the Mapping for Change conference during parallel working group sessions and was very effective in facilitating discussions. Snowballing (or pyramiding) involves participants working first alone, then in pairs, then in groups of four, and then in groups of eight. The participants work on an issue by responding to particular questions, e.g. lists of keywords, or answers to a valued question, or they are asked to agree or disagree with a given phrase. The participants are also asked to give the reasons for their responses.

Read how it was done, and what the participants themselves thought of the approach.

Participatory Learning and Action (PLA, formerly PLA Notes) is the world's leading series on participatory learning and action approaches and methods. PLA publishes articles on participation aimed at practitioners, researchers, academics and activists. All articles are peer-reviewed by an international editorial board.

Article in: PLA 54. Guest-edited by: Giacomo Rambaldi, Jon Corbett, Michael K. McCall, Rachel Olson, Julius Muchemi, Peter A. Kwaku Kyem, Daniel Wiener, Robert Chambers.

Cite this publication

, ., Ashley, H. and Rambaldi, G. (2006). Tips for trainers: the Snowball technique (PLA 54). .
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