New Learning Management System Designed for Welding Instructors
OpenBook™ is a free online software used to plan, offer and assess learning processes — allowing instructors to customize the classroom.
A solution for welding classes
As the number of skilled welders continues to decrease, welding instructors play a critical role in retaining and training new welders. At the same time, instructors must adapt classroom and lab techniques for a technology-savvy generation of learners.
Miller® OpenBook is a free learning management system (LMS) used to plan, implement, offer and assess learning processes. With OpenBook, welding instructors can assign and deliver welding content, create quizzes, welding labs, monitor student participation, and assess and report student progress and performance.
This LMS offers a wide variety of welding resources and course materials — such as e-learning modules, hands-on welding labs and quizzes. Instructors can utilize the content available to create their own course. Simply create an account, register your school or company and you are ready to get started.
The online software can be used as a tool to teach anything from welding basics to advanced lab activities and can be tailored to fit most classroom settings — from a middle or high school program all the way up to a high-level college training course.
“Instructors can customize the experience for their students depending on the needs of their local market and the curriculum that their state deems they should be teaching,” said Phil Sabee, manager of training services at Miller.
OpenBook is also great for companies and organizations wishing to provide continuous training to employees. This is helpful for educating novice welders on the job’s essentials, providing training to existing welders on new processes or even getting an entire workforce up to speed on the basics of welding.
Miller continually adds new materials and updates existing materials in OpenBook when needed, so the instructor doesn’t have to — making it simple, up-to-date and easy to use.
“As an instructor, it has freed me up a lot because I'm not spending time sitting there trying to pull information out of magazines, off the internet or looking through a textbook — it’s all there on the software,” said Matt Hansen, welding instructor at MMCRU High School in Marcus, Iowa. “I'm quickly creating my own plug-and-play system to alter a class, so the information I want conveyed to the class is right there on the OpenBook website.”
Reducing the time instructors have to spend planning lessons, grading assignments, finding resources and more means additional time they can spend helping students in the lab with their welding technique.
OpenBook is ideal for the modern learner, allowing students to complete their work on a computer, tablet or even on their phone. Students can simply log on to the OpenBook site and complete the assignments wherever, whenever.
“Modern students like utilizing technology; It's just a better way to reach kids right now,” said Hansen.
In addition, OpenBook tracks how long a student is logged in and grades assignments, and it automatically notifies students of assignments once the instructor publishes them. This allows for greater accountability from the students.
“It's just a great way for them to learn,” said Sabee. “And a different way for them to learn than what they have had in the past.”
Time and cost savings
When developing curriculum and finding resources is streamlined, there is a cost and time savings for instructors and students alike. But even more important is the opportunity easy-to-use software provides for instructors to focus their efforts where it matters: teaching.
With the time instructors save searching for classroom resources and grading assignments, they can spend more time in the shop helping students build their hands-on welding skills.
“The biggest thing for me is that is has allowed me to create better relationships with my students — getting more one-on-one time, watching them and working with them out in the shop,” said Hansen. “It has freed me up as an instructor.”
Try out OpenBook today at https://openbook.millerwelds.com.