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Learning Layers goes to Brunnenbauertage – Part 2: Our messages and our conversations

May 10th, 2014 by Pekka Kamarainen

In my previous post I described in detail, how the Learning Layers (LL) project contributed to the 65 Brunnenbauertage (German construction sector event) that was hosted by Bau-ABC in Rostrup. With my second post I try to give insights into the conversations we had with our counterparts and to report ofnour learning gains.

Firstly, it is worthwhile to emphasise that we were out there at a time when our designs and applications are in the prototype phase. We tried to give insights to the usefulness of digital media, Web 2.0 tools and mobile technologies. Yet, we had to avoid raising too high expectations. We chose to focus on the observations that we had made in our fieldwork and to on the potential of the Learning Toolbox to resolve critical issues or practical problems. We gathered several exemplary situations in borehole drilling, communication between the warehouse (Lager) and the construction site, in maintenance and repair as well as in health and safety measures. In addition, we emphasised the potentials of AchSo! as a tool to draw attention to critical situations and points to be considered.

Secondly, in our talks on the LL stall we got very often positive feedback from our counterparts. The usefulness of AchSo! and the expected functionality of the Learning Toolbox attracted interest. Also, the exemplary work situations that we presented (as ones in which the tools would help) were considered appropriate.  Moreover, our counterparts added similar situations to the picture. We talked with entrepreneurs, apprentices, trainers of Bau ABC, university lecturers and exhibitors with different backgrounds. . One entrepreneur was very convinced that the digital media, Web 2.0 tools and designs like the Learning Toolbox will be a great help for training and learning. He put an emphasis on the new generations of apprentices and their familiarisation with new media. The next entrepreneur was far more hesitant in this respect.

Thirdly, in our stakeholder interviews that we carried out during the event we were able to map some potential counterparts for closer collaboration with the LL tools. In these conversations we could see the interest in linking the digital support for learning and knowledge sharing to the renewal of products and their maintenance documents. Here we could also see a common interest area between the enterprises and training providers. We and our counterparts agreed that we need to continue these talks once we have identified common starting points.

Fourthly, we got very clear expressions of interest from universities of applied sciences (Fachhochschulen) that are developing so-called Dual studies. These study programmes are based on apprentice contracts and they link initial vocational qualification (skilled worker)  to domain-specific higher education (engineering, geosciences, etc.). In these discussions we could identify several common points of interest starting from the emphasis on workplace learning, on the role of web-based support and on the role of training for trainers (in training centres and enterprises).

With this post I do not try to give a comprehensive interpretation on the results of our activities. In this short time (and with my limited awareness of what all happened) it would not have been possible. Yet, I hope that I have been able to outline some of the learning gains that we made during our mission to the Brunnenbauertage. We will surely take them into consideration when we develop our further activities in the LL project.

More posts to come …


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