Yesterday I was in that for me was in some ways a very alien environment and in other ways a familiar environment.
I delivered a session on mobile learning to a group of military personnel down in Torpoint in Cornwall. With Navy, Army and Airforce the day was looking at advanced learning and how the military can draw ideas from how learning is changing from a series of presentations from a group of experts.
I gave a presentation on mobile learning in which covered (if you have seen me present before) familiar ground. I talked about the use of mobile technologies, the use of mobile web technologies, learning while mobile and the mobility of the learner.
I did focus on how we use mobile learning at Gloucestershire College more to enhance and enrich the learning experience at this time, over replacing traditional learning modes. Eventually I know we will be able to take advantage of what mobile learning has to offer and enable our learners to access learning at a time and place to suit the learner.
Despite radical differences between the focus and operation of the armed forces and a typical FE College; we both do train and teach learners. In some cases we deliver very similar subjects, vehicle maintenance, catering, plumbing; and in some very different subjects, handling a 20mm light cannon, disassembling a GMPG.
We both face similar challenges, we both have our Innovation Prevention Departments™, we have traditions that were laid down that are believed can never be changed, a changing society, fast moving changes in technology.
We also have our differences, the security issues faced by the armed forces are different to the ones faced in an FE College. The turnover of instructors, in the armed forces often instructors will only do a two year tour before moving back on ship, back to their regiment, etc…
We have our differences, we have our similarities, in the end we can learn from each other and this can only benefit both of our groups of learners.