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Online Learning is also referred to as Distance Education or Virtual Instruction happens when the trainee and trainer, or source of information, are separated by distance and therefore unable to meet in a physical classroom setting. Information is typically transmitted via technology (email, discussion boards, video conference or audio bridge) hence no physical presence in the classroom is required.
A virtual classroom is an online event where a trainer remotely and in real-time conducts training to a group of trainees using a combination of materials (e.g. PowerPoint slides, audio or video materials). It is also called synchronous learning. This method requires the least amount of effort to convert materials (but instructors still have to prepare them). Appropriate technology must be in place for both the trainees and trainers (e.g. software for the virtual classroom and good internet connectivity. Examples of video conference apps:
– Microsoft Teams
– Google Hangout
– Click meeting
– Cisco Webex Meetings
– CyberLink U Meeting
To support online learning to take place, facilities are required such as
Access to Internet
While there are many applications and platforms in the market that allow remote communication and video conferencing, it is important to ensure that only suitable ones are chosen when training is conducted by live online delivery. This is to ensure that the training experience is not compromised by the delivery method.
To ensure that the training delivered live online is effective, the platform/application on which the content is delivered must include the following features:
i. User login/attendance monitoring;
ii. Document sharing;
iii. 2-way communication; and
iv. Ability to generate reports on user activity and event logs.
When delivering training via live online platforms, the stability of the internet connection, as well as sufficient bandwidth, are two (2) crucial factors in ensuring smooth delivery of the content. As such, training providers and trainers must carry out sufficient testing before any such training is carried out to ensure that the delivery will be consistently smooth throughout the training period.
Training providers/Organisers are also required to provide access to the live online training session for HRDF officers to conduct the inspection. This access must be emailed to firstname.lastname@example.org at least 24 hours before the commencement of the training. The email should also have the following details:
i. HRDF Grant Reference Number;
ii. Employer Name;
iii. Training Date and Time; and
iv. Participant Name Listing.
Training providers/Organisers must also keep the video records of these live online training sessions for at least two (2) years. Training providers/Organisers should be able to provide these records when required by the HRDF officers.
Training effectiveness evaluation is compulsory for all training that is delivered live online. This is for HRDF to continuously monitor the effectiveness of training conducted in this way.
All new grant applications for training delivered live online must meet the requirements as detailed below.
Employers who wish for prior approved classroom training to be delivered live online must submit a modification of the approved grant. The training can only commence upon the approval of the modification and entitled for course fee only.
Training providers who have approved Skim Bantuan Latihan Khas (SBL-KHAS) courses and wish to deliver these courses via live online method can do so provided:
i. The course delivery method meets all the requirements specified in this guideline; and
ii. The course content, course duration, trainer and certification remain the same as specified in the approved SBL-KHAS course.
For more information, full guideline can be downloaded here