Dossiers of elearningeuropa.info - Training & Work: How does ICT change the way you learn at work?
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This is the first issue of the “Elearningeuropa.info Dossiers”, a special volume of key papers already published on the portal. Each dossier will deal with a key area of e-learning, compiling experts’ opinions and encouraging readers to comment and debate.
Enjoy reading and take part!Companies face many challenges caused by the rapid development of technology, the increasing volume of information, globalization and the call for greater customer orientation.
Collaboration and interaction are key aspects for the smooth running of the company. Information and communication technology (ICT) continuously generates new tools to speed up data transmission and communication. Work practices, and the means to accomplish them, are changing rapidly and the best way to support individuals and organizations is by providing continuous learning.
Learning at work refers to action in which learning and working are related. Traditionally, learning at work has been regarded as getting to know work tasks. Currently, as work practices change so rapidly, it can be said that the demand for learning at work is continuous, and it lasts throughout an entire career. E-learning methods and tools have been adopted for this purpose in many companies.
We have compiled some articles published earlier on the elearningeuropa.info portal related to this subject. You can read case studies and more general points of view about the use of e-learning in vocational training.
Pekka Tenhonen, of the Åbo Akademi University, writes in his article about European employers’ views on graduates’ ICT skills. In general the interviewed employers were satisfied with the ICT skills most needed in the working context: text editing, spreadsheets, e-mail and the Internet. The use of e-learning varied in the research according to the size of the company; large companies were already applying it more than small companies and therefore graduates with e-learning skills had an advantage in this respect. Read the whole article: European Employers are Satisfied with Graduates’ ICT Skills (en, fi, sv).
Sergio Vásquez Bronfman, professor of the ESCP-EAP (European School of Management), describes the e-learning programme of one of the largest banking companies in Spain, La Caixa. The “Virtaula” programme started in 2000 training new employees. However, the successful implementation and positive results has led to including a larger target audience and to increasing the learning tools. Read the whole article: Virtaula Caixa Case Study (de, es, en, fr, it).
John Munro, of the University of Sterling, describes a case study which applies e-learning in a work-based setting within a medium-sized engineering firm based in Central Scotland. One of the objectives of this initiative was to develop an interest in lifelong learning. However, the results reflected some common problems, such as time and workload pressure although providing learning is regarded as important. Read the whole article: The Experience of a Work Based Learning Project Using e-Learning (en).
Richard Straub, director of the e-learning solutions of IBM Europe, assures us how e-learning “is an efficient and cost-effective tool for fostering workforce development”. Therefore e-learning can play a significant role when building the Knowledge Society and is a key driver of European competitiveness. Read the whole article: e-Learning – a driver of European Competitiveness (en).
Vocational training, Blended learning
Carsten Gydahl-Jensen, project manager of SIMTECH, writes about one concrete example of vocational training and e-learning: the online training organised by the Danish Meat Trade College to build the capacities of staff in the pork industry. Students are faced with precisely defined learning goals, electronic learning and multi-media presentations. Read the whole article: Blended learning in the meat industry: a training course using e-learning to qualify staff to work in meat processing (en).
A Minerva project called iColl, is applying innovation in an international business studies curriculum through cross-cultural collaboration. The participants, future managers, operate in a networked learning environment and are carrying out a collaborative project on aspects of innovation. Read the whole article: iColl brings innovation to manager training through collaboration (en).