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Open learning’s ‘Oscars’ announced


The WOLCE event was host to a tribute to the movers and shakers in the world of open learning on 4 October. The WOLCE Open Learning Awards saw black ties and gowns being donned for the presentation of gongs to the lucky winners:

Outstanding Contribution to the Open Learning Industry - Professor Stephen Molyneux, Director of the DELTA (Development and Evaluation of Learning Technology Applications) Institute at the University of Wolverhampton. You could say we saw this one coming - TrainingZONE interviewed Professor Molyneux about his work earlier in the year!

Speaking at the Awards Dinner, Professor Molyneux said: "I am thrilled and honoured to receive this award and consider it to be the pinnacle of my career to be recognised by my peers in this way - especially for a contribution to something that I am so passionate about...e-learning will have the sort of impact on education and training that hasn’t been experienced since the invention of the printing press. How can I fail to be enthusiastic when UK e-learning companies will have the opportunity to be a part of this learning revolution."

Learning Resource Centre Manager of the Year - Wendy Cliffe, of Scottish Equitable Plc, for dramatically increasing the use of Scottish Equitable’s learning centre to over 16,000 hours in 1999, or 75 per cent utilisation of the centre. This has resulted in a saving in 1999 of over £150,000 compared with the costs of comparable training by traditional means. Her successful strategy includes developing a database accessible by all staff, which carries up-to-date information on all materials and courseware available within the learning centre, an online booking system and online completion certificates.

New Learner Award - Janet Henry, of Stockton on Tees. When a new learning centre opened in Stockton on Tees, Janet had been working in the building, part time, as a cleaner for 15 years. She embarked on a programme of IT skills and, encouraged by her rapid progress, prompted others to enrol. Janet has now been offered a full time contract as a learning assistant at the learning centre, supporting other learners.

Special Lifetime Achievement Award - Brian Tucker, of the Forum for Technology in Training, for his work as Forum Co-ordinator.

Generic Product of the Year - Electric Paper. The UK’s top open learning programme producers were named as Dublin-based Electric Paper for their European Computer Driving Licence (ECDL) AutoTest software. Recently accredited by the European Computer Driving Licence Foundation for Syllabus 3, AutoTest is already being used by a number of organisations including Akzo Nobel, DHL, Roche Pharmaceuticals, Smithkline Beecham and Jersey Computer Training at Highlands College.

Bespoke Product of the Year - AdVal Group, for their language training work with car rental company Avis Europe Ltd, delivering training in English, Spanish, French, German and Italian, which has reduced the time taken for a new Avis Reservation Sales Agent to achieve competence from three to just two months.

Highly commended were:

Generic Product of the Year category: Educational Multimedia, Elida Faberge, Skillsoft, VISA, Wide Learning.

Bespoke Product of the Year category: ACT, BT, Executive Business Channel (EBC), Ford, TADS.


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