Training IT experts with blended learning and brain principles

How do you develop a course to retrain people into IT professionals within two months? Calco succeeded in developing a crash course in which participants without an IT background undergo a metamorphosis and turn into true professionals. To support learners in the best way possible, they use a combination of classroom and online learning via the aNewSpring platform.

The challenge

The metamorphosis to an IT professional

Learn more about Calco

Calco wants to reskill professionals, preferably within two months. But how do you do that in the most effective way possible? And how do you make it fun?

It was important to Calco to develop a learning method that’s unique and effective. Even without a background in IT, every learner must be able to understand everything and acquire the necessary knowledge to continue as a true IT professional, in a short but intensive period of two months.

The concept

Stimuli as the base of new connections

Such an intensive learning journey is not easy to achieve, it often also requires classroom training. Yet, online support is very important. The solution? A blended learning method. Staying in contact with the teacher and your fellow students, while you have your own online learning path in which you can track your progress.

Calco took the time to make their approach as effective as possible. They used brain principles for this: a theory about how different types of stimuli help to make new connections in the brain. The use of aNewSpring includes the following principles: repetition, further development, rich in senses, focus, emotions and creation.

The result

A challenging and innovative IT course

The learners describe the course as a challenging and very educational experience in which there is a proper balance between theory and practice. It was nice for them to discover the world of IT first and what to expect in an organisation. Approximately 90% of the participants continue to work in IT.

There are also many benefits for companies that hire these learners. Their proactive attitude and diversity in study backgrounds ensure that they all bring something different to the workplace. The combination creates an interesting dynamic in the business atmosphere. During the training, Calco guides both the learner and the company very well.

Brain principles in the IT Crash Course

What are the brain principles and how does Calco use them?

  • Repetition

With the help of the MemoTrainer, the learner can repeat previous covered material on their phone while on the go.

  • Further development

Intermediate tests or a brief summary keeps track of what they already learnt. This also makes it easier to see which parts need some extra attention.

  • Rich in senses

Blended learning makes interaction possible. An example of this is adding an online game in which learners work together. In addition, you can add videos, audio, animations or texts to your online training on the aNewSpring platform.

  • Focus

A test in which the time pressure is just a bit too high ensures an increased tension. This causes the learner to stay focused.


Q&A with Gerben Spies

Can you briefly explain how the crash course business model works?

“The learners get paid on the first day of the traineeship. This also means that they get a salary during their training period. This takes approximately 2 months, after which each trainee is deployed to a client for 22 months.

If the trainee and client are both happy after those 22 months, there is a possibility for the client to employ the trainee without any costs. In most cases, we see that clients makes trainees an offer.”

In what way does aNewSpring complete (or improve) this business case?

“Before we started using aNewSpring, the presentations were sent by email. Handing in assignments was also done in this old-fashioned way. Things are different now. aNewSpring provides one central platform for our trainees. Now, it doesn’t matter whether they are on the train, our training center or at a client. Our trainees use aNewSpring on a daily basis during their internal training period. We call it ‘The Calco Academy’.

Basically, the whole reskilling process takes place on the aNewSpring platform. During this time, Calco adds value to our trainees by providing training. Even when the trainees are working for their clients, they can still follow online programs and courses via aNewSpring.”

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