Abstract Title: The delivery of health and safety training in the construction industry using virtual classes Background This research took place within the context of an EU Minerva funded project. The project's aim was to create an e-learning framework that combined multiple intelligence theory with open source software to deliver health and safety training for the construction industry. The project involved partners from Cyprus, the UK, Turkey, France and Ireland. This study reports on the activities carried out at Waterford Institute of Technology as part of the project. Purpose The research concerned the delivery of the class content through the e-learning framework developed through the Minerva Project to construction industry related students. The content was delivered through two phases of virtual classes and evaluated using an action research methodology. The evaluation results allowed for the identification of key lessons learned from the use of Multiple Intelligence (MI) theory in an e-learning framework. Methodology The theory of MI proposes that people learn using a number of intelligences and that the most effective learning environment is one that can target an individual's dominant intelligence areas. An online MI profiling tool was used to determine the dominant intelligence areas of a group of construction managers and the results were used to design a number of virtual classes. The virtual classes were subsequently delivered in two phases to construction students using an action research methodology. The evaluation process, completed after each phase, measured the levels of interaction and students satisfaction with the use of technology, the learning community, the class content and the role of the instructor. Findings The investigation found that the instructor played a key role in balancing the social, technical and educational focus of a virtual class. The evaluation process identified the role of the instructor, the level of class interactions and the stability of technology as the key aspects to the e-learning framework. The investigation produced guidelines on using MI theory within an e-learning framework. The guidelines involve presenting class content in a number of ways to allow multiple perspectives on a topic, creating a learning community through online interactions and finally allowing students to express what they have learned through personalised learning outputs.
|Publication status||Unpublished - 2009|
- Health and safety training, construction industry, e-learning