Category Archives: Construction

Article 6/2015 Learning Layers meets Singapore Workforce Development Agency (Bremen 16.9.2015)

Pekka Kämäräinen, Ludger Deitmer and Dirk Stieglitz

The research partners ITB and Pontydysgu had a working meeting with Singapore Workforce Development Agency. The delegation was led by  Chief Executive Ng Cher Pong and Chief Research Officer Gog Soon Joo and consisted of 12 participants (from the agency, from the Ministry of Manpower and from partner organisations). The delegation was on European tour and their main target in Germany was a meeting with Learning Layers project in Bremen.

In the first part of the meeting the ITB team presented information on the Learning Layers project (with emphasis on the construction pilot and on the development of the  Learning Toolbox). In addition Dirk Stieglitz from Pontydysgu  internet demonstration that showed, how the Learning Toolbox can be co-developed by the users by designing tiles, pages and stacks (for managing contents, web resources and communications).

Singapore_WDA

In the second part of the meeting the visitors informed us of the vocational education and training (VET) system in Singapore, on the role of public authorities, of their agency and of public-private partnerships as well as private-private partnerships. They emphasised that the key instrument for developing VET and continuing training is not seen in regulations but in the financing of training (e.g. via vouchers and other arrangements). From this point of view the visitors were keen to learn more on the the German dual system, on the partnership arrangements and on the commitment of enterprises to training. In addition they were very interested to learn more of the further deployment of the Learning Toolbox.

The visitors informed that the government of Singapore has approved to launch the Innovative Learning 2020 (iN.LEARN 2020) project of the agency and of the Singapore Institute of Adult Learning. The iN.LEARN 2020 is a multi-year national project with the goal of shaping learning design and it starts in October 2015. The visitors expressed their willingness to maintain contacts with the Learning Layers projects and are looking forward to next encounters.

Learning Toolbox (LTB) Chronicle Vol. 2, 6/2015

Article 5/2015 Learning Layers in dialogue with other projects at ECER 2015 (Budapest 9.9.2015)

Pekka Kämäräinen

The Learning Layers partners ITB and Pontydysgu have promoted the work of Learning Layers in the European Conference on Educational Research (ECER) from the beginning of the project. In the ECER 2014 (in Porto) ITB and Pontydysgu had a joint symposium on the relations between participative design and accompanying research. For the ECER 2015 ITB and Pontydysgu prepared a symposium to present the work of three parallel projects on developing and using digital media and web resources in order to promote learning at the workplace and in work organisations. The symposium was based on the inputs of each project (with brief discussion after the presentation). Then there was a joint discussion supported by an invited discussant.

The first presentation by Falk Howe and Werner Müller focused on the ITB project Kompetenzwerkst@tt (‘Competence workshop’) that started as a curriculum development project to promote holistic approaches to occupational fields of activity (Handlungsfelder) and characteristic Working and Learning Tasks (Lern- und Arbeitsaufgaben) in vocational learning. In this presentation the main thrust was given on the role of e-portfolios as part of Kompetenzwerks@tt approach. The presenters showed, how the e-portfolios are used in retrospective sense (documenting already acquired learning gains) and in prospective sense (for shaping learning scenarios).

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Screenshot 1 and 2: Working with the Kompetenzwerkstatt e-portfolio for apprentices

The second presentation by Pekka Kämäräinen, Ludger Deitmer and Werner Müller focused on the Learning Layers with insights into the co-design processes and into the Learning Toolbox as an integrative toolset to support learning in the context of work. Then, the presentation shifted the emphasis from apprentice training (the current pilot context) to continuing vocational training (CVT). The presentation outlined a new project initiative to support the training of general construction site managers (Geprüfte Polier) with digital media and web tools. Finally the presentation discussed some barriers to and challenges for such project work in construction sector but also on emerging changes.

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Screenshot 3 and 4: Mapping the R&D context of the DigiProB project in continuing vocational training for construction professionals

The third presentation by Graham Attwell dealt with the Employ-ID project that focuses on the changes in the public employment services (PES) in Europe (with major pilots initiated in the UK). The background of the project is in the changing role of PES organisations due to changes in working life and occupations. Now these services are required to produce data of changing labour markets and analyse the employment prospects of different target groups. Based on these results they are required to propose employment promotion measures and initiatives for self-employment. One of the contributions of the Employ-ID project was to organise an adapted MOOC (using a social network platform based on MOOC technology) to stimulate community-based online learning of dispersed PES services.

In the joint discussion the participants drew attention to the complementary relations between the projects. In particular they emphasised the relevance of the e-portfolio of the Kompetenzwerkst@tt for the further work with the Learning Toolbox. Also, the discussion emphasised the relevance of lessons from the pilot MOOCs for forthcoming pilots in the field of vocational education and workplace training.

Learning Toolbox (LTB) Chronicle Vol. 2, 5/2015

Article 4/2015 Learning Layers presents the Learning Toolbox Beta version in the International VET conference and on a field visit to Bau-ABC (Rostrup/Bremen 2.9.-3.9.2015)

Pekka Kämäräinen

The Learning Layers partner ITB organised the International Vocational Education and Training (VET) Conference as a key event of a Bremen-based comparative research project. The Learning Layers teams of ITB and Pontydysgu organised a workshop session in which there were presentations on the Learning Layers project, on the Learning Toolbox, on training models and a participative phase with hands-on testing of the Learning Toolbox. The technical developers had produced a Beta version of the Learning Toolbox by the conference. In this context ITB, Pontydysgu and RayCom made firstly a field visit to Bau-ABC.

During the visit in Bau-ABC the visitors presented shortly the functionality of the Beta version of the Learning Toolbox and tested the usability in three trades (carpenters, well-builders, pipeline builders). The Bau-ABC trainers gave exemplary tasks for providing digital content to their apprentices and for giving them electronic access to the content. The visitors provided solutions by creating stacks with special tiles and uploading digitised content via Slideshare.

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In the conference the workshop was started with presentations by ITB team members. The first one gave an overview on the Learning Layers project and and the second one insights into the development of the Learning Toolbox. These were followed by a live demonstration on the LTB Beta version that made use of the cases proposed by Bau-ABC trainers (during the field visit) and of the newly created stacks.

After the presentations the audience was split into two working groups. In one group the participants tested the Beta version of the Learning Toolbox. In the other group participants discussed success factors and critical issues of related  training models.

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On the basis of the field visit the Learning Layers research & development partners had genuine use cases to be presented in the workshop. On the basis of the background presentations, the demonstration and the discussions on the training models the participants had a real chance to give feedback for the project (both on the Beta version and on the training models as possible means for capacity-building).

Learning Toolbox (LTB) Chronicle Vol. 2, 4/2015

Article 3/2015 Learning Layers meets Finnish promoters of apprentice training (Espoo 4.6.2015)

Pekka Kämäräinen and Marjo Virnes

In Spring 2015 the Learning Layers partners from Aalto University worked in a pilot project to test the AchSo video annotation tool in construction sector. The project was organised in collaboration with Finnish Construction Trade Union, the construction company Skanska and the regional vocational schools in Tampere and Valkeakoski. This pilot was reported in a news article in the Rakentaja (Builder) journal of the trade union. The article was translated and published (as English and German versions) by the Learning Layers project (see http://learning-layers.eu/construction/ and http://learning-layers.eu/german/aktivitaten/).

As a follow-up initiative the Learning Layers partners ITB and Aalto arranged a joint event with Finnish organisations that are promoting apprentice training and workplace learning. The invited participants represented the Finnish agencies for apprentice training (Annukka Norontaus, Terttu Konttinen) the Finnish association of ‘”Promoters of Apprenticeships” (Kari Viinisalo) and the Finnish vocational teacher education institute in commerce and hospitality (Virve Vainio).

Firstly ITB and Aalto informed of the Learning Layers project and of its overall development in the years 2013 and 2014, secondly of Finnish pilots with the AchSo tool (in vocational education in the construction sector and in the healthcare sector) and thirdly of the development of the Learning Toolbox as an integrative toolset to support learning in the context of work.

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Screenshots 1 and 2: Apprentice’s project supported by Learning Toolbox (LTB) and using Video Annotation Tool AchSo at construction site

The Finnish participants shared information on current government policies and civic initiatives to promote apprentice training as well as of forthcoming conferences. Some participants reported of their ongoing studies on the societal and economic impact of apprentice training.

The participants agreed to maintain communication and created a joint mailing list for sharing news. Also, the participants agreed to contribute to Verkko-Osaaja (web-based news bulletin of the association of the agencies for apprentice training) with articles on the event, on developments in Learning Layers and on individual studies.

Learning Toolbox (LTB) Chronicle Vol. 2, 3/2015

Article 2/2015 Training Day on Learning Layers tools in Bau-ABC Rostrup (11.5.2015)

Pekka Kämäräinen, Ludger Deitmer, Werner Müller and Lars Heinemann

The Training Days are a regular training event for the staff of Bau-ABC Rostrup, the application partner of the Learning Layers project. This year the research partners ITB and Pontydysgu were invited to organise three workshop sessions during the first day. Two of these sessions for targeted for different groups of trainers (Lehrwerkmeister) and the third one for the coordinators of continuing training (including also the ICT support staff).

LL_Training-Day_1

All these sessions followed the same structure. Firstly there was a brief overview on the Learning Layers project as a whole, on the Learning Toolbox as the central ‘tool’ for our pilots in the construction sector. Secondly there was a brief explanation how these elements were brought into a joint system architecture that is managed with different software solutions. Thirdly, there was an online-demonstration that presented the functionality of the Learning Toolbox that was being developed for the forthcoming Beta-version.

LL_Training-Day_2

These presentations paved the way for group work. For these sessions the trainers had selected thematic projects that they use in apprentice training. In the group with continuing vocational training we discussed the phases of presence training and the phases of self-organised learning as contexts for using Learning Layers tools. In addition we discussed the issue of engaging visiting trainers (Referenten) as users of Learning Layers tools.

During the group work the trainers identified points of intervention for using Learning Toolbox (i.e. retrieving information, using third party apps, documenting phases of work with videos and annotating videos). In the group work with the representatives of Continuing Vocational Training (CVT) the research partners gathered points to be taken up in a spin-off project that was being prepared for a specific CVT program.

Learning Toolbox (LTB) Chronicle Vol. 2, 2/2015

Article 1/2015 The Learning exhibition “nachhaltig.bauen.erleben” opened in Verden (25.4.2015)

Pekka Kämäräinen and Joanna Burchert

The application partner organisation Agentur and the affiliated organisations Netzwerk Nachhaltiges Bauen (NNB) and Norddeutsches Zentrum für Nachhaltiges Bauen (NZNB) joined in the Learning Layers during the time when the new exhibition centre and office building of the NZNB was under construction. During the Application Partner Day (APD) visit (Y1) the colleagues from these organisations outlined plans, how to incorporate digital media and web tools into the concept of a “Learning exhibition”. In the Y1 Design Conference (Helsinki) these plans were integrated into the design idea Captus: Capturing of knowledge and experiences with the help of digital media and web tools. Now, in April 2015 the inaugural ceremony of the building took place and the Learning Exhibition “nachhaltig. bauen. erleben” (sustainable. construction work. lived experience) was opened.

LL-Exhibition_1

The opening ceremony gave an overview on different activities that are promoted by the host organisations. The subsequent inaugural presentations and demonstrations in the exhibition area gave insights into materials, construction techniques and equipment for ecological construction work. In the presentations the hosts informed visitors of the role of digital media (as support for further learning) and demonstrated the in-built applications of Augmented Reality in particular exhibition areas. In these presentations the hosts made transparent that the use of digital media and web applications had been taken up due to the participation in Learning Layers project.

LL-Exhibition_2

The Learning Layers team from ITB and Pontydysgu had a small information stand that provided background information on the project and on parallel co-design processes. In addition to this the team members made interviews with the hosts and visitors. In these talks the team explored possibilities for further introduction of Learning Layers tools.

LL-Exhibition_3

In the discussions with the hosts we concluded that the opening of the exhibition provided the basis for application partner Agentur and the affiliated network NNB to follow more closely the pilot implementation of Learning Layers system solution (Layers Box) and the deployment of Learning Toolbox in Bau-ABC.

Learning Toolbox (LTB) Chronicle Vol. 2, 1/2015

Learning Toolbox (LTB) Chronicle Vol. 1, 2014 – Overview

Construction Pilot articles of the Learning Layers project (Years 1 and 2)

Pekka Kämäräinen

The Learning Toolbox Chronicle is a collection of articles on the work of the Construction pilot of the Learning Layers project. The co-design process that was initiated in 2013 by the project partners from the training centre Bau-ABC Rostrup has led to the development of the integrative toolset Learning Toolbox (LTB) to support online learning and knowledge sharing.

The articles of Vol. 1, 2014 report on the start of the pilot activities and shaping of the design idea “Learning Toolbox” during the first year. The articles of the second year report on outreach activities with the preliminary concept of the Learning Toolbox.

Article 1/2014 From Application Partner Days to creation of Design Ideas

The first article informs the Application Partner Days with which the Learning Layers consortium launched the fieldwork activities in construction sector by visiting Bau-ABC Rostrup and Norddeutsches Zentrum für Nachhaltiges Bauen (NZNB) in Verden. The article reports on the workshops that prepared proposals for design ideas to be discussed in the Helsinki Design Conference of the Year 1.

Article 2/2014 Co-design process from “Sharing Turbine” to “Learning Toolbox”

The second article reports on the transformation of the design idea “Sharing Turbine” – digitisation of the  White folder, collector paper-based resources  – to the integrative toolset “Learning Toolbox” (flexible mobile framework to manage digital media and web resources).

Article 3/2014 Learning Layers project goes to Brunnenbauertage with the “Learning Toolbox”

The third article gives insights into  promotion campaign with the Learning toolbox concept in the German conference “Brunnenbauertage” hosted by Bau-ABC Rostrup in May 2014.

Article 4/2014 The Demo Camp presents the Learning Layers tools to apprentices and trainers

The fourth article reports on the  “Demo Camp” event that was organised as a demonstration campaign to present Learning Layers tools  for ca. 100 Bau-ABC apprentices and their trainers (alongside the Learning Layers project meeting in Bau-ABC Rostrup, June 2014).

Article 5/2014 The Learning Layers outreach activities and pilot workshops with construction companies

The fifth article informs of firstly of the demonstration visit of Learning Layers partners to the “NordBau” trade fair and demonstration Learning Toolbox to construction equipment and machinery suppliers. Secondly the article informs of a demonstration workshop organised with construction companies in Bremen. Both events took place in August 2014.

Shortly after these events Bau-ABC trainers recorded a series of videos on the use of Learning Toolbox in training and in construction work, see

Learning Toolbox videos from Bau-ABC (2014) – Overview

 

Article 5/2014 The Learning Layers outreach activities and pilot workshops with construction companies

Pekka Kämäräinen

This article gives a picture on two recent outreach activities – the visit of Learning Layers partners to the German construction fair NordBau and of the pilot workshop with two  craft trade companies interested in working with the Learning Toolbox.

Learning Layers goes to to trade fair NordBau

The annual NordBau fair in Neumünster, near Hamburg, is the biggest sectoral fair for construction industry and craft trades in North Germany. The exhibition halls present products, tools and services whilst the large outdoor areas are filled with heavy machinery by all major suppliers. Bau-ABC is a regular visitor and this event has served as a major opportunity for contacting suppliers and cooperation partners. This time we decided that Melanie Campbell, Kerstin Engraf and I will make a one-day-visit to join the trainers – Mr Grewe and Mr Schütte, who were attending the whole time. We agreed that we three will first explore the exhibition area of ICT service providers and then join Mr Grewe and Mr Schütte with their talks with the suppliers.

LL-Team_visits_NordBau

We were interested to find out to what extent the ICT service providers were presenting services for construction workers and their supervisors in the construction sites – based on mobile devices. Very few exhibitors were promoting mobile applications – and they also were primarily addressing architects or business managers.

The second part of our visit consisted of short visits and stakeholder talks in the outdoor areas in which suppliers to construction companies were presenting their machinery and equipments. Altogether we visited the areas of several supplier companies: Liebherr, Wirtgen Group, TractoTechnik, Vetter GmbH Kabelverlegetechnik, Tramann + Sohn, Wacker Neuson. The visits had been arranged by Mr Grewe from Bau-ABC and they were part of his normal cooperation with suppliers. This time, however, during most of these visits we had discussions also on the Learning Layers project and in particular on the Learning Toolbox. To us it was important that the colleagues from Bau-ABC had already integrated the promotion of Learning Toolbox (and engagement of their partner companies) to their normal business talks.

Pilot workshops with craft trade companies go ahead

At the same time ITB took further steps in organising pilot workshops with construction companies. The first pilot workshop was planned as follow-up to earlier stakeholder engagement activities of the project. Before introducing workshops with wider participation we agreed to start with a small pilot event. We invited two companies that we interviewed during the initial phase of the project and with which the application partners have good contacts.

The company K is a carpentry company with currently 36 employees. It is involved in the network for ecological construction work (Netzwerk Nachhaltiges Bauen – LL partner organisation) and in several domain-specific networks. The company has been pioneering with company-specific apps and is in the process of introducing tablet PCs for team leaders. At the same time the company is paying attention to the fact that introduction of new ICT tools will not cause a digital divide in access to information and communication. The company has regular meetings to discuss quality issues (QT-Runde).

The company W is a larger medium-sized company with ca. 430 employers and specialised on pipeline-building. It has most of its staff working on missions in teams of two or three skilled workers. This company has a long-term cooperation with Bau-ABC. The company W has been pioneering with digital pens, mobile offices (laptops with internet access) allocated to teams and with centralised databases. Yet, the company has had mixed experiences with the effectivity of such tools e.g. regarding time used for searches. The company itself has centralised databases and is concerned of knowledge management and confidentiality issues. Concerning knowledge sharing and learning across teams, there are very limited possibilities to provide face-to-face meetings.

LTB_Customised_Company-content

In the workshop we presented a general picture on the Learning Layers project and invited the companies to present their own situation assessment on their use of ICT, Web tools and digital media (including use of mobile technologies). Then, we presented a demonstration on the emerging Learning Toolbox (LTB) as a framework for managing web resources and apps with a mobile device. in the next rounds of discussions we were mapping different situations for piloting with the LTB and needs to which it could respond.

Concluding remarks

For the LL project it was a small but important step forward that both companies found their own entry points to pilot activities. For the company K these were more in the intra-company communication or knowledge sharing and in the network-wide knowledge sharing. For the company W they were in the filtering of different quality guidelines and requirements (provided by different electricity providers or public authorities).

Altogether, both companies agreed to continue the cooperation with the project and to organise further talks and pilot workshops in their companies. So, looking back at the chain of events that have been reported in this series of articles, it is apparent that these most recent outreach activities have brought the co-design activities to the hands of practitioners in the construction sectors.

Learning Toolbox (LTB) Chronicle Vol. 1, 5/2014

Article 4/2014 The Demo Camp presents the Learning Layers tools to apprentices and trainers

Pekka Kämäräinen

This article gives a picture of the German-speaking “Demo Camp” event to present some of the Learning Layers tools in a workshop to interested trainers and groups of apprentices to get feedback for further development.

The Demo Camp event and the arrangement of the workshops

The Demo Camp session took place on the first day of the Leaning Layers Consortium meeting in Bau-ABC in Rostrup. We presented a selected set of LL Tools:

  • The Learning Toolbox app to manage learning resources, apps and contents,
  • The Baubildung.net platform to support learning initiatives in construction sector,
  • The Ach so! tool to produce and annotate short videos,
  • The Bits and Pieces tool that had been developed as collector and organiser of working and learning experiences.

We arranged the room in such a way that we had four stations in the corners (or in the garden). In all corners we equipped the stations with flipcharts or pinboards to gather feedback; in the case of Ach so! also tablets were used so that each interested person could make and annotate a video. We then scheduled the visits as a carrousel workshop in which the groups rotated through all four stations (if possible).

DemoCamp_Overview

In this way we managed the visits of ca 85 apprentices and 10 trainers, supported by 5 other staff members of Bau-ABC, ABC Mellendorf and Agentur. In order to illustrate our approach and our learning gains, we will present below the work in the table on the Learning Toolbox and the feedback we got.

Experiences with the station for Learning Toolbox

The station that presented Learning Toolbox (LTB) provided a combination of Power Point presentation and a demo of the emerging mobile app (see the ppt-presentation uploaded to the shared gDrive folder: https://docs.google.com/file/d/0B02cXf0hbQH0eVFOTlQ2R0ZvYm8).

We presented insights into the tile structure, designed functionality and prospects for customisation. With the existing prototype we demonstrated the use of LTB for reading QR-tags and retrieving tagged documents.

We also demonstrated, how existing text documents with images can be developed into interactive documents with LTB and QR tags. As an example we used a work procedure of well-builders (Filterkiesbestimmung) taken from the handbook of the company Stüwa to illustrate the creation of interactive document.

DemoCamp_LTB_Carpenters

We presented three questions to the groups

  • What tools/ working contexts they would like tackle with the help of Learning Toolbox?
  • What learning materials/units they would like to develop into interactive learning resources with the help of Learning Toolbox?
  • What elements of the White Folder of Bau-ABC they would prefer to have digitised with the help of Learning Toolbox?

Harvesting the feedback

We got somewhat different answers from groups representing different trades. Also, in some groups the trainers (Lehrwerkmeister) participated in the discussion and added their points. Altogether, this event helped us to present the Learning Layers tools to a wider range of trainers and apprentices than had been possible before. Also, this time, although in a high speed tempo, we could get feedback for several tools at the same time.

Our key impressions were the following

  • The groups of carpenters and well-builders got into lively discussion about the usefulness of the Learning Toolbox in their trade. This gave rise to optimism for further co-design activities based on groups of the same trade.
  • The apprentices made a strong point that the availability of such tools and resources will strongly contribute to the acceptance of smartphones – as tools that support working and learning – in the construction sector.
  • Whenever we use concrete examples from occupational work processes, e.g. the above mentioned case of Filterkiesbestimmung with well-builders, the users’ motivation and engagement with our tools (like the Learning Toolbox) gets higher.
  • Also, the experience that it is easy to use a tool (e.g. Ach so!) supports user acceptance.

Learning Toolbox (LTB) Chronicle Vol. 1, 4/2015

Article 3/2014 Learning Layers project goes to Brunnenbauertage with the “Learning Toolbox”

Pekka Kämäräinen

This article gives a picture of the demonstration and promotion of the idea of Learning Toolbox in the major construction sector trade fair “Brunnenbauertage” hosted by Bau-ABC Rostrup.

Brunnenbauertage as a major stakeholder engagement event

In May 2014 the Learning Layers project was actively present at the German construction sector event “Brunnenbauertage” (the annual conference of well-builders) hosted by Bau-ABC on their premises in Rostrup. As a professional event of well-builders and borehole builders (Brunnenbauer), the conference part of the Brunnenbauertage event has a long history. Bau-ABC has started to organise a professional exhibition every third year. Whilst the start had been modest (only five exhibition stalls in the beginning), also this part has gained importance and now there were over 100 exhibitors with stalls and larger demonstration areas. According to Bau-ABC, there were over 650 participants (including the exhibitors).

Brunnenbauertage_Foyer

During the event, the following activities were running parallel to each other:

  • The conference sessions and workshops on specific topics on construction techniques were running in separate conference rooms.
  • The exhibition stalls were accommodated in an a huge exhibition tent that also provided the space for foyer presentations. The Learning Layers project had a stand and gave a presentation of the project and on the Learning Toolbox for an audience of ca. 300 participants.
  • In several workshop halls and in the surrounding outdoor areas there were dedicated demonstration areas with scheduled demonstrations of drilling techniques and machinery.

More information on the event is available on the website http://www.brunnenbauertage.de.

Conversations with interested companies

Altogether, the three days were characterised by many demonstrations on the Learning Layers information stall as well in conversations with seven companies and two Universities of Applied Sciences (Fachhochschulen).

Brunnenbauertage_Stall

Below I give a nutshell summary of the conversations:

a) Talks with companies interested in using web and multimedia in their initial training:

Some entrepreneurs emphasised the role of digital media, Web 2.0 tools and the use of video material. They referred to their experiences with younger apprentices that are reluctant to read texts but are more eager to learn with the help of new media. At the same time they pointed out that it is not possible for individual companies to tackle such issues on their own. Instead, there is a need for shared services that are available for several companies.

b) Talks with companies linked to each other by joint training interfaces with Bau-ABC: Some of the companies contacted during the stakeholder interviews reported of their intensive training cooperation with Bau ABC. In many cases such cooperation arrangements were based on cooperation between different companies (competitors on the markets) that had agreed to develop joint training interfaces with Bau-ABC. In this way Bau-ABC has gained a neutral position and the suppliers have been able to join forces with common training issues and by optimising the participation of their staff. By relying on such cooperation arrangements, it is possible to link the use of Learning Toolbox to multiple training contexts for various target groups.

c) Companies with interest in company-specific (networked) knowledge sharing: Some of the companies were very strongly involved in international markets. They had become aware that they were lacking tools that enable real-time knowledge sharing between their marketing specialists and production units. Also, they were concerned of the fact that their manuals and working documents are growing oversized and not accessible by the operators. Yet, in such companies there are major concerns of data protection. Also, they are concerned of the limited usability of small screens for their purposes.

Conversations on cooperation between companies and training providers

We have already taken into account the “hub” role of Bau-ABC in promoting innovations in the initial vocational education and training. Yet, the participation in the Brunnenbauertage opened wider prospects for the exploitation activities and sustainability scenarios:

a) The role of Bau-ABC as an “innovation hub” for both initial VET and CVT systems: So far, the LL project has mainly been building upon the “innovation hub” role of Bau-ABC in the initial VET as an intermediate training centre. Given the number of mandatory certificates, and the limited time for presence training, there is a specific demand for well-thought e-learning support for self-organised learning. In this context Bau-ABC can cooperate with other CVT actors and with interested companies and branch organisations.

b) The role University of Applied Science programmes with Dual Studies options: The two Universities of Applied Sciences (Ostfalia and TFH Bochum) informed us of their interface areas between vocational and academic learning in the context of Dual Studies (or lengthy workplace learning placements). In this context the UAS-departments are in the process of establishing and consolidating their models and their e-learning initiatives have been separate from each other. Via cooperation with Bau ABC and by using tools like the Learning Toolbox they may have better chances for developing such study options.

Altogether, the participation in Brunnenbauertage opened several cooperation prospects for developing and implementing the Learning Toolbox (and other LL tools as integrated parts of the Learning Toolbox).

Learning Toolbox (LTB) Chronicle Vol. 1, 3/2014