Learning expert shares training strategies for drivers amid COVID crisis

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Updated Apr 10, 2020
COVID-19 has caused motor carriers to shut down their classrooms for in-person driver training.COVID-19 has caused motor carriers to shut down their classrooms for in-person driver training.

Prior to the COVID-19 crisis, motor carriers had drivers come through their offices for orientation training and other meetings. To protect drivers and office employees from contagion, most have indefinitely suspended in-person training.

In this emergency situation, what strategies can be used to conduct live training remotely?

“Think about that question,” said Gina Anderson, Ed.D., on April 7 during a webinar titled “Conducting Real-time Orientation and Safety Meetings Amidst the COVID-19 Crisis.”

Dr. Anderson is co-founder and chief executive of Luma Brighter Learning, an instructional design and learning company. The webinar was hosted by DriverReach, which provides driver recruiting and compliance management software.

During the webinar, Dr. Anderson shared strategies for learning outside of a physical classroom. To do this, fleets are able to use online training and video conferencing technology in concert with strategies for synchronous (same time and place) and asynchronous (different time and place) learning, she explained.

The webinar also covered strategies to “flip the classroom” into a remote environment where instructors can facilitate learning by giving drivers tasks to complete before, during and after live training events.

Before the coronavirus crisis, many fleets were already using online learning management systems (LMS) to assign training content to drivers, Dr. Anderson noted. Luma has a collection of more than 400 interactive driver training modules called Luma eNuggets. The modules use a mixture of learning media that cater to the unique learning preferences of drivers, she said.

During the webinar, Dr. Gina Anderson from Luma described strategies for “flipping the classroom” to an online environment for driver training.During the webinar, Dr. Gina Anderson from Luma described strategies for “flipping the classroom” to an online environment for driver training.

On Mar. 19, Luma released a video conferencing tool that carriers are now using to remotely train drivers in a virtual classroom setting. The technology, LumaLive, is integrated with its LMS to enable fleet administrators to schedule meetings, track driver participation, and assign recorded training sessions to those who were not present for a live session.

Drivers access the live and recorded training sessions using an authenticated link through a secure login to the LMS. Administrators control user access and permissions.

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Other features of LumaLive include a whiteboard, shared notes, emoji status, a chat box and discussion board. Some carriers are using the discussion board for drivers to share resources and updates, such as rest stops that are open during the COVID pandemic, Dr. Anderson noted.

During a LumaLive training session, an instructor can share their screen with participants to review key concepts, to share a video, or conduct pop-up quizzes and anonymous surveys in real time as they are demonstrating or teaching a concept.

Outside of class, drivers can be assigned training to review the key concepts, she explained, to check for understanding.

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To assist motor carriers with remote training needs, Luma publishes weekly Luma Lessons on its website. The collection now has 33 lessons on different topics. Each has worksheets and other assets that fleets can download and use to facilitate remote, live training sessions with drivers.

The next Luma Lesson, April 10, will have ideas for how to collaborate with drivers in a virtual classroom, Dr. Anderson said, with “learner-to-learner” activities like dividing an online class into breakout groups in a LumaLive session.

Dr. Anderson also shared examples of how motor carriers are using training content, LMS and LumaLive during the COVID crisis. Some are using the LMS as a central communications hub to get COVID-19 content, documents and updates to drivers on-demand. Drivers receive an instant notification on their phone to access the content with a click.

One of Luma’s clients is also using the LMS to automate a digital form that it created for drivers to fill out daily to document sanitation and cleaning of their trucks, she said.

During the COVID pandemic, Dr. Anderson said that carriers are discovering new strategies and technologies to use for online and real-time driver training that could be more effective and efficient than what they were doing before in a physical classroom.

“There may be some ‘aha’ moments,” she said. “The technology is there, the help is there and the tools are there. Together we can all get through this time period for sure.”

Click here to view a recording of the webinar from April 7.