Government praises Oracle e-learning pilot
Government praise for e-learning pilot powered by Oracle
At a special launch event in Auckland today, Prime Minister Helen Clark and Associate Education (Tertiary Education) Minister Steve Maharey praised a unique e-learning literacy pilot involving Future Skills, Oracle and Skill New Zealand.
Crown-agency Skill New Zealand is piloting an e-learning initiative called LAMP (Language and Maths Programme), in conjunction with Future Skills New Zealand, an information-training provider that created the content used in LAMP.
Powered by Oracle’s iLearning Management System, LAMP is a self-paced language programme using computers and the Internet as the delivery mechanism. It is the first literacy e-learning programme of its kind to be launched in New Zealand.
Two hundred students will trial LAMP for six months, beginning January 2003, with the aim of significantly improving students’ basic literacy and numerical skills to enable the completion of courses funded by Government to reduce or remove barriers to employment.
The pilot will comprise of students such as school leavers with low or no qualifications and older workers with redundant or unrecognised skills.
Managing director of Future Skills Sam Alavi says that LAMP targets the root of unemployment by increasing literacy skills to the level required by employers. It will also improve the comprehension of theory within training courses provided by Skill New Zealand.
“LAMP is the result of a two-year collaborative effort between Future Skills and Skills Update Training Institute to develop a programme that improves the basic reading and writing abilities of New Zealanders,” says Mr Alavi.
“As an e-learning course, LAMP offers many advantages over traditional classroom methods such as improved accessibility, customisation and flexibility, as well as the ability to include interactive features for a richer learning experience. E-learning also enables self-paced learning and allows training content to be easily updated at any time.
“We selected the Oracle iLearning Management System because it accommodates the learning interests and styles of a wide range of learners by generating programmes designed to meet individual needs.
“A 20-minute preliminary test determines individual learning needs by identifying which English and Maths modules a student needs to complete to achieve the desired outcome of the programme. The result is a course tailored to specifically develop areas of vocational weaknesses.”
Steve Maharey says that LAMP will improve the basic reading and writing skills necessary for students to realise their maximum potential in the workforce.
“LAMP offers a new way to effectively and conveniently deliver education courses to students,” he says. “An e-learning environment provides both the reach and richness beyond that of the traditional classroom, as well as providing the flexibility for students to complete courses at their own pace.”
Phil Nesbitt, Oracle University Country Manager, who is responsible for the Oracle iLearning Management System, says that this is an exciting time for the e-learning industry in New Zealand.
“E-learning is emerging as an attractive and cost effective alternative to traditional classroom teaching methods,” says Nesbitt. “The next few years will be exciting as more and more organisations realise the pragmatic returns offered by e-learning investments, and its effectiveness in succeeding where traditional teaching methods have failed.”
About Future Skills Future Skills provides training and secondary education in the information technology fields. Located in Manukau City, Auckland, Future Skills uses the latest technology and teaching techniques to deliver a range of services including e-learning development and consultancy, training in all aspects of information technology as well as training in electronics and information technology.
About Skill Update Training Institute Established in 1991, Skills Update Training Institute provides vocational training and placement opportunities for job seekers who may be disadvantaged in the labour workforce. There are currently seven branches throughout the upper half of the North Island with five based in Auckland. The organisation was born out of an opportunity to provide South Auckland industries with training and motivated personnel and a need to address unemployment within the region. Skills Update Training Institute is registered and accredited with the NZ Qualifications Authority to deliver and assess against a wide variety of standards across many industry disciplines.
About Skill New Zealand Skill New Zealand is a Crown Agency straddling the critically important sectors of education and the labour market. Once the Tertiary Education Reform Bill is passed into law Skill New Zealand will be incorporated into the new Tertiary Education Commission.
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