Distance Learning is en vogue – for a good reason. Requirements of modern working methods with teams often distributed around the globe cannot be met with traditional classroom training approaches. Assorted web-based e-Learning approaches can meet the requirements offering learning “anytime, anywhere” and extend or replace the traditional classroom training approaches. Now the Regional Maritime University (RMU) in Accra/Ghana has partnered with DNV GL to meet its distance learning demand, starting with a first pilot project in August 2017.
The Regional Maritime University (RMU) which was upgraded into a university in 2007 was established as a sub-regional tertiary institution, the Regional Maritime Academy in 1983 having been transformed from the then Ghana Nautical College (founded in 1958). The university whose main goal is to promote regional co-operation in the maritime industry focusing on training, has enjoyed a stellar success and attracts students from across the African continent. This large geographical area and the mobile nature of the work of its alumni has made preparatory and refresher courses a challenge for the RMU with distance learning as a natural solution.
DNV GL’s Maritime Academy is the natural partner for this endeavor. The Academy has a broad portfolio of e-Learning solutions, including Smart-Up webinars, cloud-based self-learning courses and cooperates with WMU in offering two Postgraduate Diploma distance-learning courses for the maritime industry.
In August, Tjerk de Vries Regional Manager West Europe & Africa, DNV GL, and Volker Bertram, Senior Project Manager at DNV GL’s Maritime Competence Learning & Academy, visited the RMU to launch a first pilot project to convert four existing classroom courses to e-Learning, namely “Personal survival”, “Personal safety”, “ISPS” and “Elementary First Aid”. The courses were completely redesigned to reflect modern pedagogy and the possibilities (and constraints) of e-Learning, with a lively and fruitful exchange between both partners. The project aims to empower the RMU to develop and host eventually such courses independently.
“Great to see that we were able on short notice to support the university with our Academy knowledge and experience. The RMU is playing a major role in the Maritime education for West and Central Africa as well as the whole fleet for Ethiopian Shipping Lines and other nations. The larger majority of its graduates are sailing as senior officers and ratings in major shipping lines across the globe. By supporting the development of online educational tools for seafarers that reduces the need for long travels, we make things in all aspects Safer, Smarter and Greener” says Tjerk de Vries.
During a week on site, the foundation for this endeavor was successfully laid. After an animated workshop on do's and don'ts in e-Learning and different training cultures, recording started for the e-Learning courses with the aim to have the courses in place for the coming term. Godspeed and fair winds for this contribution to establish RMU as the leading provider of well-trained seafarers in Africa!