Our virtual courses have arrived… gain nationally recognised qualifications from anywhere!

by | 29 May 2020 | News

We’re delighted to be launching our suite of virtual courses, which enable individuals and teams to gain a range of regulated, nationally recognised qualifications and certifications from the comfort of their own homes or offices.

The courses, which are be taught by our own team of experienced and friendly Trainer/Assessors, are delivered via the market-leading Zoom video conferencing platform. Sessions will take the same format as face-to-face sessions, and will include a mix of class discussions, case studies, interactive activities and group exercises.

One noticeable difference however will be the assessments for some of our awards. Where possible, we have replaced the usual multiple-choice questions with a short discussion with the Trainer/Assessor at the end of the course.

Chris Austin, one of our Directors commented, “one of the main barriers that providers across the country have faced previously is being able carry out assessments remotely, in terms of ensuring the validity and authenticity required when awarding regulated qualifications.

“Now, after a lot of work alongside our Awarding Organisation partners, we’re really pleased that changes to assessments mean we can qualify our learners with exactly the same awards regardless of whether they’re sat in the classroom or online.”

Edenfield Training will of course continue offering face-to-face training. In light of the current COVID-19 situation, our team has also been working really hard to make sure that our courses are delivered in a way that keeps both attendees, and Trainer/Assessors, safe (check out the steps we’ve put in place here).

Lots of clients have already asked for further information on our virtual course offer, so we have put together the following FAQs…

 

Which qualifications are available?

The majority of our portfolio is available virtually, and private courses can be booked now by organisations looking to up skill their teams (especially whilst workplaces are quieter and/or staff are working from home). We are even starting to schedule a programme of ‘open’ virtual courses that can be attended by individuals or smaller groups.

Some of the topics available virtually include…

  • First aid for mental health (we already have an open course scheduled, take a look here)
  • Catering and hospitality (including food safety and licensing)
  • Workplace health and safety (including risk assessment, manual handling and fire safety)
  • Safeguarding
  • Customer service
  • Education, training and quality assurance

Unfortunately, our range of physical first aid qualifications is not available virtually. This is due to the practical nature of the courses, and due to distance learning not being recognised as a suitable alternative by the Health and Safety Executive of Ofsted (for schools).

 

Are the awards recognised in the same way as face-to-face options?

Yes, all of our courses are delivered using the same resources, activities and teaching style as our face-to-face training… culminating in assessment against exactly the same learning outcomes and assessment criteria.

As mentioned above, for many of our qualifications the assessment methods have been revised to allow our team to make assessment decisions remotely. In most cases, this means learners arranging a separate, short, informal (one to one) discussion with the Trainer/Assessor following the course.

For a small number of our qualifications, assessment discussions are not a recognised alternative. In these instances, we would need to arrange a date/time where learners could attend an assessment session in person.

The certificates / qualifications that are awarded following successful completion of the course and assessment are exactly the same as those that would be awarded following face-to-face training.

 

How do the courses work?   

For clients booking ‘private’ courses for their teams, we would discuss suitable dates and make a course booking in the usual way. We then provide a link to the virtual course along with some easy, step-by-step instructions on accessing the session that can be shared with learners.

For individuals, all of our ‘open’ virtual courses are listed on our website. Learners can book their place online and choose to pay later (by invoice) or immediately (by card via PayPal). After enrolling, they are automatically sent a confirmation email which includes the link to the course.

On the day, learners simply use the link to join the virtual course at the scheduled start time – the Trainer/Assessor will handle the rest!

 

Why have we chosen Zoom?Virtual training using the Zoom platform

In recent months, Zoom has emerged as one of the global leaders in video conferencing. We have spent lots of time testing a number of alternatives, and consistently found Zoom to be the most reliable, versatile and easy to use.

The platform allows us to run courses in much the same way as we would in person… we can share learning resources, have group discussions and even enable learners to ‘break out’ and have discussions in smaller groups.

Zoom also integrates seamlessly with our existing online booking system. This means that learners get all of the information they need straight away, automatically when they register for a course – so there aren’t lots of emails flying around!

For the security conscious, Zoom offers several tools to protect meetings (covering everything from how people join a session to how information is shared). All communications are established using 256-bit TLS encryption and all shared content can be encrypted also using AES-256 encryption.

 

How do I find out more?

 Over the coming weeks we will be updating all of our individual course pages to include information on virtual options. In the meantime, you can check out our forthcoming virtual open courses here, or contact our team to find out more about private course options.