In cooperation with the Bundestechnologiezentrum für Elektro- und Informationstechnik (BFE Oldenburg - Federal Technology Centre for Electrical Engineering and Information Technology), the company Diekmann Elektrotechnik based in Damme has implemented an online learning platform for apprentices.

This learning platform offers interactive, multimedia programmes on basics of electrical engineering, control engineering and technical mathematics.

Since knowledge, skills and competence that apprentices need to acquire in electrical engineering and information technology have become increasingly extensive and complex, e-learning is an excellent way to support training and supplement tuition at vocational school. Apprentices very much appreciate this form of support. They are already well versed in using new media and online forums, working with computers and mobile devices.

Apprentices use the platform for the following activities:

  • acquiring the necessary theory through interactive BFE learning software in the virtual learning studio;
  • designing electrical circuits on screen and immediately test them with the help of an electronic circuit simulator;
  • drafting and discussing homework assigned by their vocational school, exchanging experience in the online forum. The forum is moderated by experienced staff and managing director Thorsten Diekmann;
  •  evaluation of learning progress;
  • uploading project tasks, exercises, documents and papers.

The self-learning programmes are suitable for newcomers and advanced learners wishing to study or revise the theoretical basics of electrical engineering in a clear and practice-oriented manner. All learning content is also audio-based to avoid having to read longer texts on screen. However, general principles, important formulae, abstracts and tasks are also provided as onscreen texts. A large number of animations, videos and other interactive features have been embedded to increase the learning effect.

Feedback on learner responses within an assignment and tests are part and parcel of the programme which can be updated via the Internet.

Applying this learning method to support training in apprenticeship trades in electrical engineering is still an exception. As it has proved its value, the company is now planning to give also their permanent staff access to the learning platform and to offer learning software for other topical issues. With this, Diekmann aims at keeping his skilled workers up to date and, first and foremost, to establish long-term ties between them and his company.

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ReferNet Germany