Toolwire nominated for “Instructional Designer of the Year” and “Learning Technologies Solution of the Year” for 2011
Toolwire, a global leader in experiential learning solutions, has achieved an impressive showing at this year’s extremely competitive IT Training Awards, hosted by the Institute of IT Training (IITT). Based on its break-through experiential learning innovations this year, Toolwire has been shortlisted for “Learning Technologies Solution of the Year” and one of Toolwire’s Directors of Instructional Design was shortlisted for “Instructional Designer of the Year”.
The “Learning Technologies Solution” award celebrates an enterprise that has developed for its client a high quality, innovative solution – both in terms of content and instructional technique. The nomination comes during a particularly competitive year. IITT’s Chief Executive, Colin Steed, commented, “The standard is higher than last year, and as a consequence it is harder and harder to shortlist people this year. Just to get through as a finalist is amazing.” It was doubly impressive, then, that Toolwire’s Michael Watkins will be also be a finalist for the “Instructional Designer of the Year” award, presented to an individual who has developed a learning intervention that demonstrates exceptional instructional design.
Toolwire’s Immersive Learning Environments “learnscapes” provide the opportunity to enter a photo-realistic real-life environment where learners can interact with video enabled characters to gain information and solve problems as they work their way through multiple scenarios. Michael Watkins led the way in designing these learner-centric environments that are unique in their simplicity of design, yet extremely powerful in their ability to engage students.
“By creating immersive engaging storylines, tied to course learning objectives and outcomes, we have been able to blur the line between traditional assignments and real life tasks,” commented Michael Watkins, Director of Instructional Design and Technology. “From an instructional design perspective, I am perhaps most proud of our assessment methodology that enables students to carry out tasks in the context of the storyline without feeling as though they are being assessed.”
“At Toolwire, one of the greatest measures of success is a pleased client and a well-received student experience,” said David James Clarke IV, Vice President, Learning Solutions. Toolwire’s Learning Technology of the Year nomination is a testimony to the company’s successful collaboration with Dean Doug Beckwith at the University of Phoenix.
Toolwire has been a pioneer in the field of experiential learning solutions for enterprises and higher education institutions since 1998. Its highly acclaimed Immersive Learning Environments are the genesis of years of hard work establishing a robust virtualization infrastructure and designing experiential solutions such as InteractiveScenarios, which it developed for several leading IT companies to support their training initiatives. These new virtual environments, however, go beyond what has been achieved before and open up a realm of possibilities previously unimaginable for educators.