“The biggest issue people have today is time, Members need to see e-learning as a tool to address the time issue. Rather than seeing it as an add-on, we encourage Academy divers to use it a mainstream part of their learning journey. Once people have tried diving e-learning and understand how to use it, finding time is no longer an issue.”
– Academy Director
E-LEARNING AND ITS BENEFITS
What are the advantages of e-learning?
The development of our Academy members diving skills and knowledge are paramount to the success of their safety and enjoyment: if divers don’t have the required aptitude, skills and motivation for the type of dive challenges they want to undertake, they will undoubtedly suffer poor performance, which can impact both their safety and enjoyment levels.
Simply put e-learning helps divers prepare better for their underwater experiences ahead. For example, a diver with the PADI Nitrox specialty certification may not have used it in years, but is keen to use it on an upcoming wreck dive. By having the e-learning facility, the diver can work back through the e-learning course modules and feel confident about how to plan the right oxygen-nitrogen mix for the dive. The same scenario can be used for any Open Water Certified Diver whom has not been diving in a long time and needs to brush up on the foundation skills to an Advanced Open Water Diver needing to brush up on his night, deep or photography skills prior to an expedition with other experienced divers. E-learning facilitates the entire spectrum of diver levels.
BLENDING LEARNING METHOD
The term ‘blend learning’ means we combine different methods of learning – including non e-learning ones. So a blend might be some preparatory e-learning, some online self study and then an assessment and practical dive tuition over several days or weeks. By blending, different methods can be combined to create a greater overall learning experience and receive certification.
Student divers still receive PADI crew packs for their respective programme(s). This allows the candidate to watch media via DVD, read the participant manual off screen, but complete the assessments online. So it really is the best of both worlds. Prospective students taking up e-learning courses must also complete the confined water element of the course with the Academy.
PROS & CONS OF E-LEARNING
- Always available – e-learning is available 24 hours a day, 7 days a week. No matter where the learner is, they can now use e-learning anywhere, provided they have a computer and/or internet access.
- Latest Updates – E-learning gets rid of the logistical nightmare of trying to update masses of paper-based scuba diver materials every time there is a change.
- Substantial cost savings – E-learning removes the burdens of cost of travel, food, perhaps accommodation; all of which eat heavily in to the diver’s precious training budget.
- ‘Bitesize’ learning – The attention span of learners can vary greatly and it is often difficult to cater for a range of learning needs and styles in the classroom. In using e-learning, individuals can take control of how much time they want to spend on a course: it is common practice for divers to engage their e-learning in ‘bitesize’ chunks of 10 to 20 minutes to enable maximum knowledge retention.
- Risk free learning – Many people find it difficult to get involved in the classroom environment; it can be embarrassing getting questions wrong or showing yourself up in front of colleagues. E-learning offers a safe environment where users can practice and learn without fear of failure.
- Interactive online forums – Certain types of learning will only be successful through group or collaborative learning. Using our online communities and forums are less formal types of e-learning where the group members can interact with each other online, sharing experiences, knowledge and best practice.
- Consistency of message – This is a key advantage to e-learning – everybody receives the same learning messages and content through a consistent form of delivery that they can return to and put into practice at confined water sessions.
- Customisable content – Learning can be designed and delivered to your specific requirements. This ensures that operational processes and procedures are delivered alongside relevant subject matter, often mirroring the real working conditions and learner’s environment.
- Central point for learning and development – In accordance with anytime, anywhere delivery, we can give Academy students the opportunity to access their learning from a central point. Learning and development portals can give learners the ability to create their own learning paths, identifying and using the resources they require.
- Tracking learner progress – This is an essential element to clearly identify the progress of the diver’s progress and the take-up of the e-learning courses.
- Reusability – With access to a particular course, you can minimise your long-term headaches of retaining information by returning to specific elements in a particular course module or even entire courses to prepare for your dives and expeditions ahead.
- Interoperability – There are many different components within an e-learning course: infrastructure, content, assessments, tools etc. It is therefore essential that all these elements work successfully together to ensure all the learning components can be integrated across common platforms and are therefore interoperable.
- We can’t find any!
- Seriously, if used correctly, there are no drawbacks
- Okay lets take a look – If left to their own devices learners with low motivation or study habits may fall behind, be confused about activities and deadlines or feel isolated from instructors or classmates. To avoid these pitfalls, we assess and develop the diver’s knowledge at practical dive session, whilst monitoring their online course progression. We insist that all Academy members taking e-learning with us must also complete their confined water dive skills with the Academy instructors. We do this to make sure that divers gain confidence and meet their objectives with early success.
FIND E-LEARNING COURSES
To locate dive courses and training programmes that support our e-learning facility look for the Sunken Dreams e-learning badge on the course advert. All courses available are advertised in the Sunken Dreams Scuba Diving Academy E-shop. If you are uncertain as to whether a particular course has e-learning support then feel free to contact us directly.