To overcome known barriers is an important step for the introduction of the EAGLE learning solution. Three common and important barriers, which have been identified in the EAGLE project, are described in some detail in the following.
Make sure users have basic IT skills
Users need to be familiar with IT in daily use. Especially the handling of a GUI (Graphical user interface, such as that found in the windows Operating System) and a browser are minimum requirements.
Knowledge of using a word processor and discussion forums are as well needed for successful use. If these skills are not present at the beginning of the implementation, they can be acquired by using learning modules of the platform. To become an author of learning content of the platform (OER), additional skills are required. These skills can be acquired through learning-by-doing and appropriate learning modules. Tutorials for key features of the EAGLE learning solution are available on the portal.
Provide time for personal learning at the workplace
Offer time slots for your staff to become familiar with the platform. Employees in PA face many different tasks and issues in their everyday work. In order to deal with them effectively and efficiently, it is crucial for them to a) exchange with others in a similar position to decrease problem-solving time and to b) constantly learn something new. EAGLE addresses these demands by allowing employees in PA to establish their own network of colleagues and to exchange with experienced colleagues beyond regulatory and agency borders.
Previous e-Learning projects, which have proven not to be sustainable or to have withstood the test of time, may have caused reservation against IT-supported learning. These prejudices can be relieved by early and readily understandable information. Make clear that EAGLE is not “just another” e-learning platform, but a highly efficient tool for informal and social learning through connection with colleagues and experts. In addition, test accounts on the intended platform, with content covering the user’s own topics, are the best way to create high acceptance. Make clear that IT-supported learning cannot be a complete substitute for face-to-face contacts.