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Delivering training in innovative, hi-tech ways.

SKILLS and their importance to the economy and the prosperity of Wales remain at the top of the agenda for the Welsh Assembly Government.

The University of Wales: Trinity Saint David has gained funding to support the accreditation of prior learning and the acquisition of high-level skills for workers whilst employed in small and medium-sized businesses (SMEs) in the Convergence area.

The LATERAL Project (Liberating Aptitudes by Technology Enhanced Recognition and Accreditation of Prior Learning) will fund a range of Work-Based Learning (WBL) programmes primarily to employed participants.

Whilst some learners attend courses at an institution in order to develop skills, high-level skills can also be developed in the workplace. In-house staff development programmes can often support this effectively, but these are rarely given credit value. LATERAL enables learners to demonstrate that through their experience they have gained the relevant knowledge and skills. The credit gained can form part of a full award, e.g. certificate, diploma, degree or postgraduate award.

The Mentoring our Workforce (MoW) project supports the accreditation of Work-Based Learning and will also be provided free to SMEs in the Convergence area. Mentoring is an increasingly popular tool for supporting personal employee development and for whenever there is an element of change in the workplace. This project will provide training and accreditation for those employees who also provide mentor support in the workplace. Innovative and flexible training will be further developed to include an e-learning platform to support learning and an e-portfolio may be used for accreditation.

Both projects aim to utilise the latest technology in order to reach a range of employees in different vocational areas. Bilingual support material can be downloaded to iPhone and iPad and online resources and e-books will be provided. Learners will have the support of an academic advisor and tutor. Employer engagement will be an essential aspect.
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Title Annotation:Features
Publication:Western Mail (Cardiff, Wales)
Geographic Code:4EUUK
Date:Nov 18, 2010
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