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Germany: new nationwide training concept for Industry 4.0

Continuing digitisation poses new challenges for professionals, with an impact on vocational education and training. In order to prepare industrial-technical apprentices for the world of Industry 4.0 right from the start, the chambers of commerce and industry (IHKs) have developed an interdisciplinary training programme that is offered nationwide from 2019.

The concept Apprentice for Industry 4.0 is aimed at apprentices from the second and third year of apprenticeship in the industrial-technical area. The offer is optional and intends to create acceptance for digital technologies at an early stage, as well as providing young people with crucial specialist and media skills to meet the needs of Industry 4.0.

The future skilled workers learn to recognise the potential of networked systems in their own company and to participate in the conception, implementation and selection of suitable methods and technologies.

Training divided into seven modules

The IHK training consists of seven modules of at least 40, and a maximum of 64, training hours.

The modules are:

  1. internet of things;
  2. technology;
  3. business / benefits;
  4. processes;
  5. application fields (production, installing, service);
  6. intelligent tools for Industry 4.0;
  7. work / person.

In modules 1-4, trainees use information technologies to discover how smart objects capture, process, store and interact with their environment.

In module 5 the apprentices are involved in practice-related field studies.

In module 6-7, apprentices learn how intelligent tools influence the way of working in the future. They address the question of how the priorities of human work shift in the age of Industry 4.0 and what key competences are required.

In all modules the participants become personally active and contribute with their knowledge and skills in group work.

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