BIMCO, the Institute of Chartered Shipbrokers and Ocean Technologies Group maritime eLearning subsidiary Videotel have joined forces to provide access to a wealth of self-study material via the institute’s learning management system. The ICS Online Academy is free for all registered users until the end of July 2020 and will enable students to use eLearning material jointly produced by use BIMCO and Videotel in preparation for Institute exams by giving them greater access to quality education and maritime resources.
“The ICS Academy is a really unique project which has allowed BIMCO and Videotel to collaborate with the Institute for the benefit of the maritime community, especially students who are struggling to stay on track with their learning during the current crisis. The combined technical, educational and subject-specialist skills that have gone into building the Academy really demonstrates the dedication to quality of learning rather than a purely commercial focus,” said Julie Lithgow, Director of the Institute of Chartered Shipbrokers.
Angus Frew, BIMCO Secretary General & CEO said, “BIMCO is very happy to donate this material. In the hands of Institute of Chartered Shipbrokers, it will be put to good use and hopefully bring a lot of new people into the industry.”
The Academy was soft-launched earlier this year and has already been tested by over 300 students from locations as varied as Lagos, Kenya, Singapore, Tanzania, the UK and Canada. The Institute of Chartered Shipbrokers made the decision to bring forward the scheduled launch of the project to assist students suffering as a result of the restrictions imposed by the Coronavirus.
“As a global learning and operational technology company, Ocean Technologies Group is driven to help to make the industry safer, stronger and able to excel. Partnering with BIMCO and the Institute for Chartered Shipbrokers for this new initiative means that students in developing countries will have access to the same high-quality resources as they would find in well-established maritime learning centres and can continue their studies and training during the coronavirus pandemic,” said Manish Singh, Chief Executive Officer at Ocean Technologies Group.
Available online for free
The ICS Online Academy can be accessed via computer or using the free Moodle app for both iOS and Android. The learning platform is specifically designed to support learners in developing countries. Users in locations with poor or unstable connectivity are able to download courses, work offline and submit their work when reconnected.
The online solution boasts multimedia learning materials, as well as guides on good study habits, revision tips and exam techniques. There are also interactive forums which students can use to liaise directly with subject matter experts from over 100 maritime centres around the world. Furthermore, the Academy is open access meaning that students can dip into any module they would like to study.
Although a new initiative, the platform uses tried-and-tested, user-friendly content from the BIMCO eLearning Diploma Programme (BeDP) that was launched in 2011 as a joint venture with Videotel, which now forms Ocean Technologies Group’s maritime online learning arm along with Seagull and MTS (Maritime Training Services). The group also encompasses operational technology providers Coex AS and Tero Marine.
“The BIMCO e-diploma programme was a great initiative to be part of. Both BIMCO and Videotel put so much into the creation of these courses, capturing the expertise of the tutors and transforming it into a distance learning format, it is great that by donating the content to the ICS Online Academy it will find a new audience and help keep them on track to achieve their goals,” explains Raal Harris, Managing Director at Videotel and Creative Director at Ocean Technologies Group.
The platform, which is being regularly furnished with additional content, features modules on topics such as economics, chartering for specific vessel types, law, marine insurance and also ship, port and terminal management.