Danish Shipping Academy says interactive, online courses are on the rise
Danish Shipping Academy introduced an interactive, online version of the mandatory “§16 Safety and Health” course and courses in Danish Maritime Legislation with success in November 2017. They claim that there has been a significant increase in the number of seafarers taking these courses and satisfaction has been very high. During the first quarter of 2018, 182 seafarers have taken the mandatory §16 Safety and Health and/or Danish Maritime Legislation courses for foreign senior officers and masters. Among these 103 took the course online using the new possibility for an interactive version of the course with an approved teacher in the other end. Thus, both the shipowners and the seafarers appreciate the new option, and the new way of handling the courses online is a significant improvement for both groups. For the shipowner, it is a much more flexible option, which includes no travelling costs for the employees and easy access to the necessary courses, and the seafarers do not have to assign working hours on board to meet the requirements. For the seafarer, there is less time away from home and family and easier access to the course given that the only requirement is a stable and functional web connection. These upsides are well described by Finnish Mikko Hassinen, who is a maintenance engineer at Maersk Drilling, and who took the course in January 2018. “As an offshore employee working in remote locations, I value my well-earned leave very highly, so training courses can be difficult to fit in my plans for the time off. This time was different when I participated in an online course from home. Instead of travelling to Denmark to take the mandatory training, I took the kids to school in the morning as usual and just spent the day on the computer,” explains Mikko Hassinen and continues on the quality of the content. “It was a pleasant learning experience - not only because it saved me three nights home with my family - but it was also an efficient training method, and I really managed to interact with the teacher and other participants around the world. I think the online course is a strong option compared to traditional classroom courses.” According to Jakob Ullegaard, Executive Director at Danish Shipping, this is also the reason why so many shipowners and seafarers have chosen this solution. The first quarter of 2017 was by far the period last year with most seafarers taking the courses. Nevertheless, the first three months of 2018 have seen a 25 percent increase in the number of seafarers doing so. This speaks to the success of the interactive, online courses, where the seafarers receive the relevant certificates by mail on the last day of the course. “We know that both shipowners and seafarers have been on the lookout for a solution that does not include extensive costs and is much more flexible. We can say with certainty that our new courses meet this need and the interactive approach ensures a high output for the participants. We expect our courses to be filled for the next months and look forward to showing even more shipowners the benefits of the online courses,” says Jakob Ullegaard.