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GATEKEEPER - A blended approach

Innovative delivery of vital training to enable soldiers to safely transport dangerous goods.

Efficiency without compromise

The British Army needed to improve its dangerous goods transportation training. While the quality needed to increase, efficiencies were also required to reduce soldiers’ time away from their unit, lower accommodation demand and reduce the associated course expenses.

A blended learning approach was sought, adding pre-course eLearning and reducing the face-to-face time.  However, the online elements needed to remain engaging, avoiding the pitfalls of switching to ‘click-next’ style learning.

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A blended solution

CDS Defence & Security were asked to turn the eight-day residential course into a blended five day residential and three-day distance learning course.  We started by reviewing the existing course content, completing a training needs analysis to pick out the elements appropriate for online learning and those better delivered face-to-face. 

We devised an engaging course structure, making use of 3D animations and game-based scenarios to narrow the gap between training and real-life operations.  Eight online interactive packages were created, with life-like models of munitions, vehicles and containers.  The familiarity provided by accurate models avoided the need for physical equipment in the face-to-face learning, saving time and resources.

Game-based scenarios were linked to real-life processes and procedures so students could understand the relationships between the two and learn when to refer to them.  Our delivery embraced the security requirements of the client, making intelligent use of abridged documentation to achieve the required learning outcomes.  

The face-to-face learning was recrafted into seven modules, six exercises and a testing package with a full library of new learning resources to support it.  It sought to reinforce the eLearning and test its effectiveness to guarantee soldiers would leave the course able to transport dangerous goods safely.

From eight days to five

We achieved both efficiency and quality through a blended solution now compliant with the Defence Systems Approach to Training (DSAT).  The time on course was reduced from eight days to five, achieving the time, cost and resource efficiencies required by the customer.

The scenario and game-based learning now sits on the Army’s Learning Management System, allowing soldiers to access it as required and complete the pre-course learning flexibly around their existing unit commitments. 

Our successful delivery of this project against tight timeframes impressed the customer, leading to follow on work to devise 16 training modules on the safe storage of ammunition.  This is currently structured as five different courses delivered at a local level; CDS are working to bring them together into one blended learning package.

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