One often hears of organisations that enrols employees on foundational training by means of computer-based learning. We argue that staff who needs to learn the basics of English and Maths can only do so efficiently when they have face-to-face interaction with co-learners and facilitators. We do not oppose the fact that computer-based learning can be successful in most learning areas, but when it comes to basic education and training we feel strongly that this type of learning should be a social event.
The importance of social in foundational training
When learning a new language we, as adults, can only sustain our learning by speaking the language on a regular basis. Many of us were taught a third language at school and found that, four years later, we are hardly able to understand when someone speaks that language. The same is true for adults in the workplace. Most blue-collar workers come from rural areas where their everyday language is vernacular, and even though most of them had English as a second or third language at school they have lost the ability to communicate effectively in English.
Computer-based learning is unlikely to sufficiently improve someone’s English to a point where they can communicate effectively in the work place. That is why we believe foundational training is a social event. By having learners interact with each other in English during learning sessions, and by completing and presenting practical assignments to co-learners not only help learners to become more confident in a lesser-known language, but also provides them with an opportunity to practice the language and thereby improving their ability to understand work-related instructions better.
Why English foundational learning?
English is an accepted business language world-wide. Factory equipment manuals are written in English; company policies and procedures are written in English; computer software for everything from printing labels for warehouse stock to stock taking and cold-storage tracking is in English; your salary slip is printed in English; and your funeral policy is written in English. Few of these applications for English have been simplified for the English second language user.
Often factory workers will say that they understand an instruction, even when they do not, out of fear for losing their jobs. Likely results of this fear could be errors that lead to loss of production, and sometimes even errors that have fatal consequences. Therefore, English foundational learning is important.
At Triple E Training we offer foundational English learning on five levels: ABET 0 to ABET 4. Our learning programmes result in a recognised and registered NQF 1 qualification for the learner, and contributes to your organisation’s BEE scorecard within the skills development element. We can help you earn points towards the social economic development element on your BEE scorecard by recruiting unemployed members of the community to join your staff. And because we are a Level 2 contributor you can also benefit under the preferential procurement element.
For more information about our foundational English programmes contact us on 010 597 7611.