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New Remote Security Management course on Mission Ready

DTS and partners RedR have launched a new course on the Mission Ready platform: Remote Security Management.

Remote Security Management

Remote Management – or ‘constrained access programming’ – describes an approach to running projects which involves “transferring greater programming responsibility to local staff; and overseeing activities from a different location.” Remote Security Management (RSM) may be part of this approach. It splits security management responsibilities between staff in a potentially insecure location and staff in other locations.

No longer a temporary or last resort: Donors and implementers working in insecure contexts primarily view remote programming as a last resort strategy to be adopted once other measures have failed. However, remote programming is now the new normal in fragile and conflict-affected states where access is severely restricted, rather than a temporary response. – No Longer a Last Resort: A Review of the Remote Programming Landscape,  working paper, Integrity Research and Consultancy

In many hostile environments it may be sensible to locate non-essential roles away from the conflict, where staff can work more effectively. In other situations, a background level of continual risk may cause an aid organisation to rule that the only posts on offer are unaccompanied or local staff positions. This restricts the pool of experienced staff available at the front-line.  Despite the limitations above, certain staff can contribute to effective and much-needed aid projects in potentially insecure locations.

The Remote Security Management course on Mission Ready aims to give trainees a taste of the complexities of remote management that front-line and remote staff will likely face when working to deliver humanitarian programmes.

Interactive Game Play

For the Remote Security Management course on Mission Ready, the interactive scenarios take the point-of-view of the Remote Programme Manager.

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You are the regional programme manager for a fictional NGO based in the fictional territory of Raqan. Given the high state of tension in most of the surrounding countries, there are always several medical projects taking place. Although the security situation and the demands of the rest of your job may not allow you to be based in the field in difficult locations, you still play an active role in supporting teams from a central point. Your mission is to to enact the core practices of good security management in order to continue delivery of projects on the ground.

Remote Security Management course is available on Mission Ready. For more information, please visit: www.missionready.org.uk

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Interactive Video and the Changing Face of Training

In 1923 radio was first introduced as an educational tool. It was a landmark step in using new technology in learning. A mere 10 years later the relationship between technology and education had developed so quickly that 52% of schools had already incorporated silent film as a teaching tool.

Fast forward to today and we have the seemingly unstoppable rise of e-Learning. The rapid changes in computer technology have changed the face of education and have revolutionised the professional training industry.

Interactive video in e-Learning

The term ‘e-Learning’ was first coined in 1999. Since then the market has grown exponentially, more than doubling in size in the last five years. 98% of organisations now use some form of e-Learning with 91% of these users stating that e-Learning enables a quicker response to organisational change and 42% of these companies reporting that e-Learning increased their revenue. The online training industry has always attempted to keep ahead of the technological curve, and recently a new technology is beginning to cause a stir, interactive video.

This year 86% of e-Learning customers expressed some level of desire to access interactive visual content on demand. In the same survey the amount of people who strongly agreed that they wanted interactive video increased from 34% in 2013 to 46% in 2014. E-Learning isn’t the only industry to being to adopt interactive video, the marketing industry has recently released some interesting research about its own experiments with the medium; one such study found that interactive commercials produced a 300% increase in views, an 800% increase in shares on social media and a 90% increase in user engagement.

“In order to create an engaging learning experience, the role of instructor is optional, but the role of learner is essential.”

– Bernard Bull

Gamification

Interactive video in e-Learning could be seen as part of an emerging trend of ‘gamification’. Gamification is already a huge market; by 2014 more than 70% of the world’s largest organisations had at least one gamified application; by 2018 the global gamification market is forecast to be valued at $55 billion. Almost 80% of learners surveyed said that they would be more productive if their university or workplace was more game-like. The results from this influx of gamification have been very positive, 70% of teachers said they saw an increase in student engagement when using educational video games and vendors claim that gamification can lead to a 100% to 150% pickup in audience engagement.

Despite the positive early results there is a lot of room for improvement within the industry as an estimated 80% of current gamified enterprise applications fail to meet their objectives, due largely to poor design. This is where it has been argued that interactive video can help, unlike conventional gamified applications, video content is very controlled. It creates enough interactivity to be engaging whilst keeping the content very much ‘on the rails’ – providing a disciplined and consistent experience system of experiential learning.

“Tell me and I forget, teach me and I may remember, involve me and I learn.”

Benjamin Franklin

Initial research

The first major piece of research into interactivity in e-Learning took place at MIT In 2012. After the initial crop of students finished this experiential course a survey discovered that 94% of respondents found one or more of the interactive features useful, furthermore, 94.8% of those surveyed would suggest an implementation of interactivity throughout the MIT OpenCourseWare site. They cited benefits such as ‘working at their own pace’ and ‘multi sensory learning’ as the reason for their extraordinary levels of engagement.

This research does not stand alone, a year later Dr. Kenneth J. Longmuir began to replace his lectures with interactive lessons on iPads. He went on to say “The most frequent statement was that students appreciated the interactive nature of the online instruction.” In fact, 97% of surveyed students said it improved the learning experience. They reported that not only did the online material take a shorter time to master than in-person lectures, but the interactivity of the modules was the “most important aspect of the presentation.”

It is becoming abundantly clear how important interactivity can be for education, it is easy to see how interactive video is beginning to take off. By 2016 98% of organisations are predicted to use video as part of their digital learning strategy. Increasingly however these videos are taking an interactive slant. Large scale projects like Digital Training Solution’s Mission Ready, a project with International Humanitarian Training NGO RedR, have begun to use immersive, interactive video as a central component in their learning approach.

“Education should not be about building more schools and maintaining a system that dates back to the Industrial Revolution. We can achieve so much more, at unmatched scale with software and interactive learning.”

Naveen Jain, InfoSpace

Primed for expansion

Since the slow introduction of Interactive video the results have been very positive. A recent Forrester report noted that average completion rates for linear videos in advertising, depending on placement and device, typically lie within the 50 to 85 percent range, typically however Interactive Video sees completion rates in of above 90 percent — often with repeated views for the same video as consumers explore all paths of the interactive storyline. Interactive video is clearly a market primed and ready for expansion, a tool that could be utilised to massively increase user engagement and may prove to be the next mile-stone in the e-Learning landscape.

DTS launches flagship interactive platform: Mission Ready

Working alongside disaster relief NGO, RedR UK, DTS has launched online learning platform Mission Ready for the international humanitarian sector. The platform has been created to provide a number of interactive simulations and challenges to prepare aid workers for what they may face in the field.

Become Mission Ready with real-world scenarios

Mission Ready puts trainees in a ‘real-world’ environment where they are required to interact with individuals and make decisions.

Interactive scenarios put the user in real-world situations they may experience whilst on Mission.

Field Security Management

The first training course is Field Security Management, designed to meet the security needs of organisations and individuals working in hostile environments.  Material covering a range of security topics – including context assessment, security planning and staff managment for security – has been developed in collaboration with Oxfam, Save the Children and War Child.

Speaking for DTS, Mike Todd said:

“Game-based learning has been proven to improve both user engagement and knowledge retention. We really believe that Mission Ready will help revolutionise training in the sector – it will save money and, more importantly, help save lives.”

The platform is available in Arabic, English and French and combines written content, documentary films and immersive, interactive first person scenarios.