Simulation for learning
Training of heavy machinery operators involves several problems both from the safety and economical point of view.
The operation of hazardous machine by an inexpert operator implies a high risk, and some of the exercises that benefit the learning process are not possible in real machinery, as they imply danger for the driver and the equipment. On the other hand, dedication of equipment units to training tasks implies a high cost for the company.
The main goal of a training simulator is that users learn how to use different machines without the need of using a real one, avoiding risks and saving money. A training simulator allows repetition of maneuvers and exercises under a very wide range of conditions, and the exposition of the trainee to many extraordinary events that are not possible when using real machinery: extreme weather conditions, operation under machinery fault, stressed operation, etc...
With this aim, a full methodology and a set of tools are provided together with the simulator. They allow the introduction of new scenarios and situations, according to the expertise knowledge of the Instructor. The simulator provides an experimental reality that allows:
- Demonstrating: the simulator allows to the experienced drivers showing the use of the machinery to new drivers as a first contact experience.
- Instruct: the trainee can receive the instructions and indications that lead to a proper operation of the machinery.
- Practice: once the pertinent indications have been received, the trainee will practice the tasks and operations until they are properly learned.
- Evaluate: finally, the simulator also provides tools for an objective evaluation of the skills of each operator.
Under our experience and point of view, using simulators from training has several classical advantages, like cost reductions, the risk avoidance and the possibility of reproducing whatever weather conditions you want. But apart from that, our training systems also focus in implementing exercises that trainee the users in activities that are not possible when using the real machines, like working with machine failures, training in stressed conditions or even in high risk situations that can lead to human injuries.
We think that it is essential to provide not a simulator but a complete instructional system. Therefore we distinguish from other in the fact that we take a lot of care not only in the designing of the simulator itself but also in other two main cores: a complete instructional design (the course to follow in the simulator) and a complete and accuracy evaluation subsystem, based on reports and on the possibility of debriefing whatever exercise you have made before.