Wednesday, July 07, 2010

NCVER 2010 day one afternoon

After lunch my paper on Perspectives of new trades tutor was presented to an interested audience.

The afternoon keynote from Linda Howard who is from Macmahon & Doorn-Djil Yoordaning. She presented on the key success factors to indigenous pre-employment training. She reports on the indigenous pre-employment & workplace training at the Macmahon Pilbara operation. Doorn-Djil Yoordaning is a subsidary of Macmahon focused on indigenous people based at Newman which is in the centre north/west of WA. No challenges teaching indigenous trainees how to drive dump trucks but dispositional & interpersonal communications capabilities plus also literacy/numeracy. Students, stakeholders, employers, community etc. consulted as to contents of the programme. Programme run through Pilbara TAFE Newman campus & concentrates not only on practical skills but also the enabling skills – self-esteem, conflict resolution, communication, goal setting, team work, money management, healthy lifestyle plus resume writing & interview skills. Success factors of this programme include the acknowledgement of the importance of relationships (including family, mentors etc.)

The attended paper on 'getting our hands dirty: Participation in a trades communities of practice' with Brett Hoggard (construction) & Tom Colley(plumbing) from Victoria University which has good connections to my paper. They detailed the COP established, through funding from Office of Training & Tertiary Education (OTTE), to assist with the development of better teaching strategies and to provide opportunities for tutors to network. They presented their experiences on how the COP was set up and the advantages agendered by participating in the COP. These include the ability to 'build bridges' between schools in faculties, creates a forum to discuss innovative ideas and opens up sharing of what others are doing.

Day ended with Pecha Kucha sessions - I attended the ones with a voc.ed. /literacy - numeracy focus. These include:

Berwyn Clayton on the Cert IV in Training & Assessment (TAA) - graduate perspectives - completed as an online survey from a range of RTOs. wanted to find out the perspectives of new teachers on the training afforded through the TAA. Did TAA prepare them for teaching? 6 months later, did a follow up (indepth interview) to find out what they used from their TAA course. 97% said after the course, they could deliver learning & 80% confident to conduct assessments. All wanted opportunity to practice new skills & how to motivate learners. novices tended to find the course more useful then people who had already experienced teaching practice.

Shi Sion Tang on 'narrowing the gam between engineering & practice' whereby a study on what engineering work actually involves is reported on. There is a need to go beyond the general perception that engineering is onlye involved with 'nuts & bolts' but needs to also include many 'soft skills'. These include coordinating, collaboration, communication, interacting, importance of teamwork, dealing with subordinates, superiors, customers etc.

Unfortunately, the sessions between the two rooms were not synchronised and by the time I got to the second room, they had finished the other two presentations! Ones I would have liked to find out more about wer Andrew Vodic on 'supprting the transition from practice to research - change management perspective' & Rachael McMahon on 'measuring the 'unmeasurable' benefits of literacy training. Also a session by Wendy Kennedy on the literacy & numeracy support needs of VET lecturers would have been to attend but this one clashed with the session on engineering practice