Hastings Secondary College students will access augmented reality technology simulation for the first time, allowing them to fast track and maintain their welding skills.
Hastings Secondary College will receive two augmented reality training welding systems and training for teachers in the use of this technology, as part of the NSW Department of Education VET Program for Secondary Students (VPSS) WELD Program grant. Phase one of the program has funded 16 schools across the state.
The new augmented reality training welding systems will support the introduction of the new NESA Stage 6 Manufacturing and Engineering course to deliver the MEM10119 Certificate I in Engineering and a Statement of Attainment towards MEM20413 Certificate II in Engineering Pathways.
The augmented reality equipment will complement the industry-standard Engineering Trade Training Centre facility on the Hastings Secondary College Westport Campus.
Augmented reality training systems are highly student-focused, allowing individual students to learn at their own pace. Manufacturing and Engineering students learn and understand welding procedures and techniques through a more interactive training method, gaining hands-on experience in a controlled, safe environment. Augmented reality transforms training from traditional theory and textbooks into high-quality interactive experiences that capture the imagination of the students.
Mr Grant Weatherby, Senior Pathways Advisor and Public Schools NSW Tamworth RTO Manager, said "The augmented reality equipment simulates real-life situations and teachers can increase or decrease the level of difficulty of a simulated task. Using this technology, students can learn the very basics of welding as well as advanced methods and skills."
He added "A student's learning journey will start with simulation and then progress to the real life application of skills and the manufacture of projects. The aim is to give students as many deep and relevant experiences in their education, so practical skills are always showcased through an engaging project. Many students use their projects as evidence of their skills when they apply for local jobs".
With zero risks involved, students can respond to realistic scenarios without pressure or fear of injury. Augmented reality training is enabling future welders to acquire the skills and the self-confidence they need before moving into real-world workshops.
Mr Weatherby said “In addition to developing skills, augmented reality is a safe environment with no need for special clothing or ventilation. The welding can be done in any classroom. It is 100% safe, simply because it is a virtual welding environment.”
“No materials such as welding rods, steel plates or welding gases are needed and because the equipment has no gas emissions it is eco-friendly,”
"Welding has always been a practical and hands-on learning experience for students and is still a highlight of their training. The augmented reality training equipment will allow students to experience this hands-on learning."
"The Manufacturing and Engineering industry is placing a greater emphasis on practical training accompanied by technical skills in the use of these types of technology. This method of training is another way our students are trained to the current industry standard".
"We're in a space where technical knowledge is the new normal. Our local Manufacturing and Engineering industry is such a mix of the traditional and the technological, we will always need to teach students through simulation and practical experiences".
The Manufacturing and Engineering industry employs over 4,500 people across the Mid North Coast.
Students at Hastings Secondary College can commence training in Manufacturing and Engineering related qualifications in Year 10, and a student can obtain up to three nationally recognised qualifications across Year 10, 11 and 12.
It is expected that training and arrival of equipment will take place in Term 3, 2020.
If you are a local employer in the Manufacturing and Engineering industry, and you are considering taking on an apprentice, talk to the staff at Hastings Secondary College about taking on a School-Based Apprentice.