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Old 01-01-2017, 02:53 AM   #1
Join Date: Oct 2010
Location: Cambridge, UK
Default [Basic] Skill of the week: Teaching

Teaching is the IQ/A ability to teach people things. The only default is IQ-5, and no skills default to Teaching. If you have skill 12 or better, you count as a qualified teacher for the Improvement Through Study Rules on B292-3. Modifiers include cultural unfamiliarity (which a shared style familiarity can bridge), language modifiers (for both teacher and student) and penalties for Callous and Shyness. The skill appeared at GURPS 1e, and forms a trio with Research and Writing, providing the ability to use intellectual knowledge effectively, and to pass it on. Before the advent of modern education systems, every master of a skill or craft was expected to teach apprentices.

Social Engineering: Back to School expands on the Teaching rules considerably. It has modifiers for class sizes, requirements for knowledge of the skill being taught, rolls against Teaching, assistants, different media of instruction, training montages, teaching the unwilling, and the wide range of traits that can help with teaching, including several new ones.

Teaching is a standard skill on templates and lenses for academics, sages and bards, and common for priests. It's also fairly common for military NCOs and officers, since they have to instruct their troops. Boardroom and Curia has institutions that provide this skill, and DF has Demonic Tutors. Madness Dossier allows Teaching to remove memetic effects, over time. LTC1 covers early educational methods and institutions, and LTC3 has a template for a professional teacher. Martial Arts covers combat training as a business, and rapid learning of a martial art in a montage. Talents and wildcard skills for Teaching are available in the Power-Ups series, Powers and Enhanced Senses have abilities that can boost it, and The Weird lets you do ... stranger things ... with the skill. Psionic Campaigns covers learning psi powers, and Social Engineering personas, memetics, and Teaching as an influence or promotion skill. Ultra-Tech has AI teachers, and with the right perk, you might be able to teach Zombies.

I couldn't claim this is a major skill for adventurers, but I've seen PCs use it a few times, for mutual training on long voyages, and for coaching fellow-students at naval officer college. What have you done with it?
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Old 01-01-2017, 03:34 AM   #2
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Join Date: Sep 2008
Location: near London, UK
Default Re: [Basic] Skill of the week: Teaching

Originally Posted by johndallman View Post
I couldn't claim this is a major skill for adventurers, but I've seen PCs use it a few times, for mutual training on long voyages, and for coaching fellow-students at naval officer college. What have you done with it?
The first (naval college) phase of Wives and Sweethearts used it off-camera as well, but those rolls were being made by NPC tutors - who were pretty competent, and didn't mess up.

Mutual training is definitely worth considering, especially for skills that the whole party can benefit from having (like Stealth or Hiking).
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Old 01-01-2017, 04:58 AM   #3
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Join Date: Mar 2006
Location: Kyv, Ukraine
Default Re: [Basic] Skill of the week: Teaching

Ironically, the biggest use of Teaching I've seen was not in GURPS, but rather in my last campaign before switching to GURPS. It was Mage the Ascension, and all the PCs were actively giving each other a drip of XP into the skills which one had and the others didn't.

Teaching was used occasionally for the same purpose in my GURPS campaigns.

In my current campaign, Improvement Through Study is not used, but our good doctor put a point into it because he used it to spread his higher-TL knowledge to other doctors of his faction.
Vicky 'Molokh', GURPS FAQ and uFAQ Keeper
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Old 01-01-2017, 07:55 AM   #4
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Join Date: Nov 2012
Location: Australia WA
Default Re: [Basic] Skill of the week: Teaching

One of my GM's once let use use it to help along an NPC learn Japanese (when we visited another dimension we all had a special power to automatically translate anything spoken in that world to our own native language, so while we could understand the NPC, he couldn't understand us.)
We also have had other characters teach others fighting techniques, but it didn't happen enough to ever get a free point from training, rather it just justified us spending our own earned points into the Skills.
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Old 01-01-2017, 08:50 PM   #5
Join Date: Mar 2008
Location: Virginia, USA
Default Re: [Basic] Skill of the week: Teaching

I've seen Teaching used a couple of times to teach skills to other PCs and allied NPCs.

How useful it is for this purpose depends on how strict the GM is with CP expenditures. If the GM allows buying whatever, then Teaching is merely a job skill or background skill. But if the GM requires a teacher or in-game practice to learn a skill, then Teaching is gold for learning new skills with no defaults, so no easy way to practice. In particular, for mages teaching each other spells.
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Old 01-03-2017, 02:15 AM   #6
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Location: Iceland*
Default Re: [Basic] Skill of the week: Teaching

I tend to see almost all characters without crippling mental or social disavantages that prevent them from forming attachments to other people pick up Teaching if they survive long enough to become professional 'adventurers'.

In a fantasy or historical worlds, successful warriors lead bands of men-at-arms, mercenaries or household troops. Imparting their warrior skills to worthy followers is part of that. Knights have pages and squires. Swashbucklers may open fencing schools or take on private students who seek to master the sword. Similarly, mages take on apprentices and burglars or cutpurses have their own, less formal, method of passing on their skills to larcenous followers.

In a modern or many science-fiction worlds, 'adventurers' tend to be intelligence, naval or military special or covert operations personnel. In such cases, operational deployments alternate with training rotations and the most highly proficient operators are expected to instruct lower-ranking personnel.

Generally, therefore, while beginning PCs tend to spend off-seasons in training with established masters, more advanced and successful PCs tend to spend off-time training each other as well as henchmen and followers.
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