ORLANDO, Fla. — Senior leadership throughout the fleet participated in a one-day Ready, Relevant Learning (RRL) Summit at the Naval Air Warfare Center Training Systems Division (NAWCTSD), Orlando, Florida, Oct. 18.
The summit focused on the RRL pillar of the Navy's Sailor 2025 initiative, with an overarching goal to provide Sailors the right training at the right time and in the right way. The new training model will eliminate the current practice of front-loading training at the very beginning of a Sailor's career by providing incremental training, or Block Learning, across a career-long learning continuum that delivers the training closer to when a Sailor is expected to perform the specific work.
"Ready Relevant Learning is an opportunity to completely overhaul the way we do training," said Rear. Adm. Kyle Cozad, commander, Naval Education and Training Command. "We are looking at different modalities of how we train, and RRL seeks to achieve more of the performance-based training as opposed to the knowledge-based training we stress today."
The summit included presentations on the role the fleet and subject matter experts will play in determining future training requirements as well as new modernized technology and learning strategies that will be incorporated as RRL is implemented across the Navy.
Technology demonstrations showed the participants examples of modernized delivery methods, including the Multipurpose Reconfigurable Training System 3D® (MRTS 3D®); Littoral Combat Ship (LCS) Immersive Virtual Ship Environment (IVSE); Virtual Interactive Shipboard Instructional Tour 3D™ (VISIT 3D™); VISIT VR; and NAWCTSD mobile learning applications. These tools increase the number of training "reps and sets" a Sailor can perform before actually interacting with physical equipment or systems.
"This type of technology can be replicated onto a desktop so that I can have a classroom of 20 people go through the same reps and sets, touch, go through the procedures, start and shutdown multiple times without the risk of damaging the real equipment," said Cozad.
The MRTS 3D laboratories and classrooms allow Sailors to use 50-inch touch screens to see and access parts of tactical equipment in a video game simulation environment. Students follow operating and maintenance manuals, interacting with the simulated equipment through intuitive touchscreen commands and gestures. The system gives students multiple opportunities to virtually perform tasks such as turning valves and selecting tools for jobs in a torpedo room or engine room.
The LCS IVSE is a state-of-the-art gaming engine that uses an avatar to virtually access shipboard facilities and locations, simulating real-world scenarios. A student can look in any direction and complete watchstation requirements before even stepping aboard a ship.
"I think where the technology is going to come into play is the ability to give us more options to observe things before Sailors do them, which will give them more of a comfort factor for operating that equipment," said U.S. Fleet Forces Fleet Master Chief Paul Kingsbury. "Sailors and watch teams can model and simulate evolutions and be more prepared."
Participants in the summit saw how VISIT 3D provides a photo-realistic interactive experience of a real-world environment. The virtual reality (VR) version of VISIT 3D is called VISIT VR, using the VISIT 3D software with modifications to enable a student to wear VR goggles and conduct shipboard familiarization training in an immersive virtual reality world. Students interact with the VR world using haptic gloves or handheld wireless joysticks.
NAWCTSD computer engineers also demonstrated mobile applications like eHelm and Mobile VISIT.
"These tools will build our Sailors' confidence as they perform operations and see how things respond for the first time," said Kingsbury. "There is an art to much of what we do, and technology can give you a real feel for how systems perform."
Technology advancements will deliver the most effective means of training for Sailors while transforming training away from a heavy emphasis on memorizing, describing or listing and toward more performance-based training with application, repetition and practice.
The long-term goal of RRL is to have the ability to reach back to training content and resources through a robust learning management system, while incorporating modern technology-based solutions along with more traditional delivery methods, such as instructor-led and laboratory training.
"This summit is the first opportunity we have really had to bring in fleet subject matter experts, folks from the type commander staffs, and fleet master chiefs," said Cozad. "There was an incredible turnout, and I think what this demonstrated was the fleet's commitment into making RRL the force multiplier that it will be in the future."
Multipurpose Reconfigurable Training System 3D, MRTS 3D, and the MRTS 3D logo are registered trademarks of the U.S. Navy. Virtual Interactive Shipboard Instructional Tour 3D and VISIT 3D are trademarks of the U.S. Navy.
For additional information on Ready Relevant Learning, visit www.rrl.navy.mil.
Technologies currently being developed by NAWCTSD can be found at www.navair.navy.mil/nawctsd/.
For additional information on the Naval Education and Training Command, visit the NETC website https://www.netc.navy.mil or http://www.navy.mil/local/cnet/. Follow us on Facebook at http://www.facebook.com/netcpao and Twitter @netcpao.