Except for pre-polling, most ACT Election Commission polling staff work for a single day, once every four years – an exceptional training circumstance.
Our solution needed to ensure that in training for voting operations, competency must be reached to perform optimally on the day. It requires more than just familiarity with relevant legislation and procedures. Polling staff are engaged in a one-time event, working under intense pressure and with little latitude for error. Without an opportunity to first practice what they must do, the failure risks were high.
We undertook a Discovery phase with Elections ACT to determine a best practice training solution that would target the desired performance outcomes and maximise efficiency and effectiveness in training polling officials in preparation for the September/October 2020 ACT Legislative Assembly election.
Our proposed approach to this training encompassed a best practice constructivist learning model, a learning platform (Moodle) based on pedagogical principles, and design approaches that accelerate the path to competence (scenario-based learning and spaced practice).
The Discovery phase concluded that to facilitate the accurate and timely application of voting procedures and knowledge, the design of the re-vamped polling official training required:
- challenge testing (recognition of prior learning/knowledge),
- case studies,
- situation-based questioning to present and test knowledge/application, and
- a learning campaign process, post-initial training.
The specification outlined nine different categories of polling place staff that required general and role-based specific training.
In this project, we:
- migrated and adapted the current content to meet best practice adult eLearning principles
- created an end-to-end best practice adult learning platform, including initial assessment of basic knowledge quiz (before training begins)
- developed and integrated new resources, training modules and interactive learning tools to enhance learning outcomes for participants
- provided a new look and feel for the eLearning package
- integrated ‘social’ learning opportunities
- embedded assessment tools, and
- implemented, configured, populated and hosted a contemporary LMS for delivery.
Our team worked closely with the Deputy Electoral Commissioner to develop the new training solution.