How We Learn (With Julie Dirksen)

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We wanted to learn more about how people learn so we could also learn more about how to create better training and do other things to facilitate that learning at our workplaces more effectively.

So who better to talk with than Julie Dirsken, author of Design for How People Learn and all-around well-informed person on issues related to learning?

Check out the interview with Julie yourself to begin learning about learning. We’re very grateful to Julie for joining us and sharing her knowledge on the topic, we hope to have her back for some follow-up discussions, and we encourage you to buy a copy of her book and read it (see the link below).

Here are some relevant links:

Thanks again to Julie!

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eLearning Basics: Flash is Going Away–Have You Checked Your eLearning Courses?

News flash for you (pun INTENDED!): Adobe is going to discontinue the Flash Media Player at the end of this year (2020).

Why should you care? For one reason, because some of your elearning courses at work may still use Flash video. You want to start planning and acting now to avoid a problem at the end of the year.

We tell you more in the article below so you can make it through this transition without major problems.

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OSHA Basics: OSHA’s Upcoming Regulatory Agenda (Unified Agenda)

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Ever wonder if OSHA’s planning to release new or updated standards or even where to find out that kind of information.

Well, there is an easy way to know. OSHA publishes what they call their “unified agenda” online at the OSHA website.

We’ll tell you more in the article below, plus we’ve included a free guide to OSHA General Industry Compliance at the bottom of this article for you to download.

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OSHA Updates Guidance on Recordkeeping for COVID-19 Infections (Goes Into Effect May 26, 2020)

Please note: OSHA published a guidance regarding recordkeeping for COVID-19 infections on April 10, 2020, and then released a new, revised guidance after that. The earlier guidance is still in effect, and it will be in effect until May 26, 2020. We’ve already written an article about the earlier guidance, and we’ll update that article on May 26 to match the terms of the new guidance. This article is a brief explanation of the new guidance that goes into effect May 26.

OSHA’s published a revised guidance regarding COVID-19 infections and recordkeeping that goes into effect May 26, 2020. You can read that new guidance at the OSHA website.

We’ve going to wait until the new guidance goes into effect before we update our earlier article, getting into all the details, but feel free to read OSHA’s new guidance on your own, paying special attention the following two changes:

1. The second, revised guidance no longer has different rules for correctional facilities, the healthcare industry, and emergency response organizations. Employers in all industries will be treated the same.

2. The second, revised guidance has additional explanations of determining if an infection should be considered “work-related” during the time of widespread community transmission.

For additional information about OSHA and COVID-19, you might also want to check out:

Beyond that, you might want to read our short article on 4 OSHA Training Requirements for COVID-19 and/or our much longer article about OSHA Safety Training Compliance & COVID-19.

Don’t forget to download the free guide below, too. Remember, though–it doesn’t include the COVID-19 specific information discussed in this article, although it will help you as you go through this process.

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Free OSHA Injury & Illness Reporting & Recordkeeping Guide Download

Download this free guide to learn what you need to know about OSHA requirements for injury & illness reporting and recordkeeping.

Download Free Guide

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OSHA’s Guidance on Recording Cases of COVID-19

Please note: the article below is based on an OSHA guidance published on April 10, 2020. Since this article was written, OSHA has published a new, revised guidance covering recording COVID-19 cases. The older guidance is still currently in effect, but the second, but on May 26, 2020, the earlier guidance will be rescinded and the new guidance will be in effect. You can read the new, revised guidance here, and we’ll update the article below on May 26, 2020. The two primary differences are that in the new guidance, all industries are treated the same (so there are no different, more stringent sets of rules for healthcare, emergency response, and correctional facilities) and the rules for determining if an infection was likely to be work-related or not are more articulated. 

OSHA’s published a guidance on recording cases of COVID-19 infections for employers. You can read the entire guidance, and we recommend that you do that, but we’ve also summarized it for you below.

In addition, you might also want to check out the following from OSHA on COVID-19:

Beyond that, you might want to read our short article on 4 OSHA Training Requirements for COVID-19 and/or our much longer article about OSHA Safety Training Compliance & COVID-19.

But now let’s get into the details of OSHA’s guidance on recording COVID-19 infections. And if you scroll down to the very bottom, you’ll see we’ve included a free guide to OSHA Recordkeeping & Reporting you can download as well (the guide does not have this information specific to COVID-19, however).
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Writing Better Tests for Job Training: The Issues of Reliability and Validity

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It’s often, if not always, a good idea to provide some form of test or assessment after providing job training to employees.

In some cases, this may be a written test scored in a pass/fail manner, and in others, it may be a performance test that requires the workers to demonstrate a skill or the ability to perform a procedure in a satisfactory manner before they go back and perform that skill for real on the job.

In either case, it’s important for that test to be a good one. And by “good,” we mean that it provides you with useful, actionable information about whether or not the employee has truly benefited from the training, can satisfy your learning objectives, and is ready and able to successfully apply the new information or perform the new skill on the job.

Side note: Tests are also beneficial for compliance reasons, to prove the worker understood the training, and also because tests have been proven again and again to improve comprehension and retention (see this article on the “testing effect” for more on this).

There are a number of characteristics that “good tests” like this share. Learning & development experts know the two that we’ll talk about in this article as validity and reliability. Read on to learn more about what a valid and reliable test is and why it’s important to create valid and reliable assessments.

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Workforce Tests That Match Your Learning Objectives: The Issue of Fidelity

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An important part of designing, creating, and delivering job training materials is creating learning assessments–the test at the end of the training activity to determine if workers can perform the skill or skills required by the learning objective.

That test can come in many different forms, including performance demonstrations and, often in the world of online learning, multiple-choice questions.

Whatever type of test it is, you may sometimes find yourself wondering about the best practices for creating the test or assessment that employees must complete after training and before they perform the tasks for real on the job.

In this article, we’re going to give you tips about something related to test creation that learning experts call fidelity (no, not THAT fidelity–this is not a juicy blog post). In training talk, fidelity is the extent to which your test or test question mirrors the real task your workers will have to perform on the job.

In describing fidelity and tests, we’ll cover a few other best practices, too. Hope this helps you with your question writin’.

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OSHA Offers Helpful Resource for Wearing Respirators Safely at Work

OSHA’s been creating a lot of helpful materials related to workplace safety and COVID-19, and they recently created some materials to help workers wear respirators correctly to preserve their safety.

One of those new OSHA resources is this OSHA Poster titled Seven Steps to Correctly Wear a Respirator at Work. Another is this OSHA Video titled Putting On and Taking Off a Mask.

Additionally, there are a lot of guidances at the OSHA COVID-19 Safety and Health Topic webpage regarding respirators at work that you should check out (in particular, check out the Enforcement Memoranda).

On top of all that, you might also want to check out the following, more general materials from OSHA on COVID-19:

And before you leave, you might want to read our short article on 4 OSHA Training Requirements for COVID-19 and/or our much longer article about OSHA Safety Training Compliance & COVID-19.

Stay safe, friends!

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OSHA’s Guidance for the Package-Delivery Workforce & COVID-19

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If you’re a safety professional or worker in the package-delivery industry, and you haven’t yet seen this, OSHA published a guidance for COVID-19 and the package delivery workforce. Do yourself a favor and check it out.

In addition, you might also want to check out the following from OSHA on COVID-19:

Beyond that, you might want to read our short article on 4 OSHA Training Requirements for COVID-19 and/or our much longer article about OSHA Safety Training Compliance & COVID-19.

Please use the comments to share any experiences, insights, suggestions, or cautions you may have. And stay safe and healthy!

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OSHA’s Guidance for the Construction Industry Workforce & COVID-19

If you’re a safety professional in the construction industry, and you haven’t yet seen this, OSHA published a guidance for COVID-19 and the construction industry workforce. Do yourself a favor and check it out.

In addition, you might also want to check out the following from OSHA on COVID-19:

In addition, you might want to read our short article on 4 OSHA Training Requirements for COVID-19 and/or our much longer article about OSHA Safety Training Compliance & COVID-19.

Please use the comments to share any experiences, insights, suggestions, or cautions you may have. And stay safe and healthy!

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OSHA’s Guidance for COVID-19 and the Manufacturing Industry Workforce

If you’re a safety professional in the manufacturing industry, and you haven’t yet seen this, OSHA published a guidance for COVID-19 and the manufacturing industry workforce. Do yourself a favor and check it out.

In addition, you might also want to check out the following from OSHA on COVID-19:

In addition, you might want to read our short article on 4 OSHA Training Requirements for COVID-19 and/or our much longer article about OSHA Safety Training Compliance & COVID-19.

Please use the comments to share any experiences, insights, suggestions, or cautions you may have. And stay safe and healthy!

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4 OSHA Training Requirements for COVID-19

We’ll start this article with two quick reminders: (1) in the middle of the current COVID-19 pandemic, things are changing quickly and (2) we wrote this article on Wednesday, May 13, 2020. So be sure to check OSHA’s website dedicated to COVID-19 frequently for updates.

On April 13, 2020, OSHA released a guidance called Interim Enforcement Response Plan for Coronavirus Disease 2019 (COVID-19). We recommend you read the whole thing and make yourself familiar with the OSHA COVID-19 Safety and Health Topic page in general.

In this article, we’ll list out the four requirements for safety training related to COVID-19 mentioned in the guidance. As always, since this is a novel virus, we’re still learning about it, and things are changing quickly, keep checking in with OSHA and other credible, reliable sources to stay up-to-date on these issues.

In addition to this article, you might also want to check out our much longer, more comprehensive article looking at a range of issues related to OSHA compliance, safety training, and COVID-19 or the recent discussion on similar issues we had on the ASSP podcast channel.

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