OK – apart from the obvious retort that nothing makes sense in TOGAF®…. This is an open-ended question that I’m throwing out to you, because I’d really like to hear back in the comments what it is about TOGAF that doesn’t make sense to you.

I’ve been writing blogs and creating learning resources for Good e-Learning for several years now, but I’m sure there are many things that I haven’t covered, or that still don’t make sense to you.

So here are some questions to help you think about what you don’t understand in TOGAF:

  • Which parts of the documentation don’t make any sense to you? These are parts that you’ve read over-and-over again but still can’t figure out what point is being made. For example, it may be that you’ve read Section 42.2 Terminology: The Meaning of Architecture Compliance, but still don’t get the distinction between irrelevant, consistent, compliant, conformant, fully-conformant, and non-conformant.
  • Which concepts are hard to grasp or understand? It would help if you could be specific about why you are struggling. For example, you may have read Chapter 25. Interoperability Requirements, but still find the concept of “interoperability” unclear.
  • Which phases or steps in the ADM need more detail or examples. For example, in Phase C section 10.3.6 asks you to Resolve Impacts Across the Architecture Landscape… but maybe you need an example to make this clearer.

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  • Are there any definitions that don’t adequately clarify the meaning of a term? For example, definition 3.32 describes a Capability Increment as “A discrete portion of a capability architecture that delivers specific value. When all increments have been completed, the capability has been realized.” Maybe the phrase “discrete portion” needs further explanation or an example.
  • Are there any techniques that are clearly explained, but lack a context in which they would be used? For example, it may be that Chapter 27 on Risk Management is clearly written, but that you are unsure how you would use this analysis in a conversation with senior decision makers…. Or maybe you don’t know how this information could be passed on to the relevant person.

There are plenty more topics. I regularly get questions about how to use the meta model and content framework. These include wanting to know how to use the meta model, how to extend the meta model, or how to adapt the meta model when the EA software you are using has a different meta model or when the meta model doesn’t seem to fit your enterprise.

This is your opportunity to let us know the things that are preventing you from getting the most out of your training or certification in TOGAF by commenting below. If we know about your needs, then it is easier for us to produce blogs or resources that can help you.

I hope you take up this challenge. If you do, please include any links or references to the documentation that will help show where the problems lie. It would also be useful if you are able to include information about a situation where you have tried to use a process, concept or technique and it hasn’t worked. Again, any detail will help pinpoint the issue and make it easier to create a new resource that overcomes any limitations in the existing documentation.

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