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Designing Visuals for Better Safety Training

Designing Visuals for Better Safety TrainingSafety training is important. Important enough to get it right. And by "get it right," we mean creating safety training that is more likely to help your employees understand, remember, and later use that training on the job. All of which ultimately will lead to safer, healthier workers and workplaces.There are many things you can do to make safety training more effective. One is to use, and make proper use, of visuals that (a) support the training content and (b) that are designed to support how our brains work when we process, store, and later retrieve information. We'll give some very simple tips for creating effective safety training visuals in this article.Learning is a ProcessTo get a good sense of how visuals can improve safety training, it helps to understand a high-level view of how we learn.One way to think of it is by understanding how information passes from the outside world, through our senses, to the part of the brain in which we actively think about things, then into long-term storage, and then later back into the working mind when we need to use it on the job.Each of these is a different step in the process. There's no guarantee that the movement of information will happen at each step. And as training developers, we can do things to help or hurt the process at each of these steps. Let's look at each step in more detail.Different Steps of Learning ProcessAt any one time, we are exposed to a large number of stimuli—things we see, things we hear, things we feel, etc. This all happens in what learning experts refer to as our sensory memory. Our brains actively filter out, or ignore, most of these stimuli.A small percentage of the stimuli in the world around us gains our active attention. This happens in what learning experts call the working memory (you'll sometimes see this referred to as the short-term memory as well, but it’s better to think of it as the working memory).The working memory can only "store" information for a short period of time, maybe 15 seconds or so. And it can process only a small number of things at any one time. Learning experts used to say five to seven things at once, but these days you'll more commonly see this estimated at four bits of information at once.In the next phase, some, but not all, of the information we processed in the working memory gets stored in the brain. This is what is known as the long-term memory.Finally, when we need information on the job, we retrieve the information from long-term memory back into our working memory. Sometimes we retrieve a specific bit of information so often it becomes effortless and automatic.As trainers, there are things we can do to make each of these steps more successful. That includes how we use visuals during our training. And, as you'll see, there are also things we can do that make each of these steps less successful. And yes, you can use visuals in a counter-productive way that decreases learning, too.When Learning Goes Bad: Problems at the Different StepsIf everything works just right, information will pass through each of the steps we just listed, it will be stored in the long-term memory, and it will be retrieved and used on the job to keep a worker safe at the appropriate time. However, things can break down at any of the different steps.For example, consider the first step: when external stimuli are bombarding the senses and are competing for our conscious attention. During training, if the training materials don't attract and keep the learner's attention, we've essentially lost before we've even begun. So it's important to create training materials that immediately grab and focus attention.Or, think about the next step, when we're consciously processing information in the working memory. Remember that the working memory can only process information for a short period of time (15 seconds, roughly) and can only process a few bites of information at once (about four). It's easy to overwhelm these limits of the working memory and, if that happens, the learner simply "drops" or "loses" information. That information never gets transferred into long-term memory for storage, meaning the learner can't later retrieve it and use it on the job. So it's also important to present a small amount of information in bite-size chunks.Likewise, things can go wrong at other steps, too. It's possible, for example, to have information stored in the long-term memory but not retrieve it when it’s needed on the job.How Graphics Can Reduce Safety Training EffectivenessIn general, the news about graphics and training is good. When they're designed well, they can increase the effectiveness of safety training.But notice we said, "when designed well." That's an important caveat. Because if visuals that are included in training materials are poorly designed, they can actually decrease the effectiveness of training. Below, we've listed four examples of mistakes that people commonly make when creating visuals for training (and that actually risk decreasing the effectiveness of the learning experience).1. Unrelated graphics. Say you're creating a PowerPoint presentation to explain your company's lockout/tagout policy. And say it happens to be right around Halloween. Because lockout/tagout and safety seem serious and therefore not fun, you decide to add a dash of fun to the presentation by adding clip art of a pumpkin or ghost to play off the nearness of the Halloween holiday. But that image of a pumpkin, as innocent as it seems, detracts from your lockout training message. And it can reduce the effectiveness of your training.2. Loosely related images added for "additional interest": Imagine you're creating a PowerPoint presentation to teach workers how to use the small, hand-held fire extinguishers at your workplace. Because your training topic has to do with fire and fire prevention, you add an image of a professional firefighter climbing a ladder to enter a flaming window. The image may at first thought seem on-topic, but it has nothing to do with how to use a fire extinguisher. It may seem interesting (or admittedly is), but it risks drawing worker's attention from the simple PASS method to any number of things—the time their neighbor's house burned down, the heroic first responders on 9/11, etc.3. Too many images: Now imagine you're creating a presentation about confined spaces. You're working on a slide that addresses permit-required confined spaces, and you're adding some images. On that one slide, you add a series of images to show the permit, conditions that require the permit, a confined space attendant, and more. As you may have guessed, you're risking overwhelming the learner's working memory. It's better to spread these images out over multiple screens or to simply use fewer images.4. Written words that duplicate spoken words: This last one may seem unexpected, but there's a lot of evidence behind it. Imagine you're introducing a new safety policy at work and you want the workers to be aware of and understand the new policy. So you create a PowerPoint presentation, you include the word-for-word text of the new policy on one of the screens, and then during the training you read the policy word for word to the workers while it's projected on screen. Believe it or not, this duplication of the words presented both visually and vocally will reduce comprehension. It's better to read the policy out loud, using the PowerPoint to highlight key points with a few visuals and/or bullets, and then distribute the policy to the workers so they can read it on their own.So while it's good to know that visuals can improve your training effectiveness, it's also important to know that common mistakes like those listed above can also decrease the effectiveness of your safety training.Some Ways That Graphics Can Improve Safety Training EffectivenessThere are many visual design techniques for creating effective safety training. One great source for these tips is Connie Malamed's book "Visual Language for Designers." Malamed's a training expert and a graphic design expert, and her book is one of the best resources I've ever found on the topic. The book lists and explains 25 different graphic design techniques to improve training, grouped into six different general categories. We've got an extended explanation of each technique for you here if you really want to dive deeply into this topic.For the purposes of this article, though, let's look at just a few simple tips that will give you some great bang for your training buck.Malamed's first tip is to "make it easy to find the important parts of the visual." There are two reasons to do this. First, it makes it easier to capture your employee's attention (getting the information into the sensory memory). And second, it makes it easier for the employee to know what in particular to pay attention to (making it easier for the worker to process the information in the working memory and reducing the risk of overwhelming the working memory). Two very simple ways to do this are to make sure the important element in a visual is in an obvious location—typically, the center of the image. And another is to reduce any unnecessary, potentially confusing "visual clutter" in the image.Look at the image below as an example. It's from a training course on back injury prevention and from a part of the course that explains the anatomy of the spine. As you see, the person's spine is directly in the center of the image. And the image of the person is superimposed on a blank, blue background with no real-world objects competing for your attention.You may have also noticed that the spine has been highlighted yellow to attract attention even more. Highlights and similar techniques, such as pointer arrows and labels, are also effective visual techniques that help to improve comprehension and retention.Now let's consider another example. The image below is from a course on wire rope safety, and it's taken from the part of the course that's explaining the "lay" of a wire rope.You'll probably recognize the previously mentioned techniques of centering the wire rope in the image and presenting it on a blank, blue background to remove the potential for distraction. In addition, though, this image includes a bright yellow arrow to help the worker more easily recognize and understand the "right lay" of this wire rope.This yellow arrow in the image above is similar to the yellow highlight technique we discussed for the image of the spine. But the arrow does not than just attract and focus attention, as the highlight did. The arrow also communicates a key point of information.As we mentioned earlier, Malamed's book includes many more tips that we haven't had space to mention here. But just the few tips we did discuss—center the important element in your image; remove visual clutter; use highlights to attract attention; and use arrows and similar techniques to communicate additional meaning—will get you moving in the right direction.We've listed Malamed's six different categories below. You may find it instructive to read the list and then try to image different visual design techniques that might apply to each category.1. Organize visuals so the viewer will quickly and easily perceive the important elements.2. Direct the viewer's attention to the most important elements.3. Use simplified visuals that are easier to process mentally.4. Make abstract or obscure concepts easier to understand.5. Make complex, complicated information easier to understand.6. Use emotions, storytelling, surprise, and humor.Use the comments section below to share your thoughts.Jeff Dalto is an instructional designer and the Senior Learning & Development Specialist at Convergence Training, where he helps to create safety and health training solutions. Jeff has worked in instructional design for more than 20 years and in safety training for more than 10 years.Posted on Feb 24, 2017Let's block ads! (Why?)

Τι κάνουν 80 γεράκια σε ένα αεροπλάνο;

Ογδόντα γεράκια που πετούν μαζί θα ήταν ούτως ή άλλως ένα εντυπωσιακό θέαμα, πόσο μάλλον όταν μιλάμε για ογδόντα γεράκια που πετούν μαζί… μέσα σε αεροσκάφος!Η παραπάνω φωτογραφία δημοσιεύτηκε στο κοινωνικό δίκτυο Reddit, με τον χρήστη να παρατηρεί: «Ο πιλότος φίλος μου μου έστειλε αυτή τη φωτογραφία. Σαουδάραβας πρίγκιπας αγόρασε εισιτήρια για τα 80 γεράκια του».Στη φωτογραφία φαίνονται βέβαια καμιά τριανταριά από δαύτα, έτοιμα πάντως για απογείωση. Παρά το περίεργο του πράγματος, κυνηγετικά γεράκια μπαίνουν συχνά στις αερογραμμές των αραβικών κρατιδίων και πολλές αεροπορικές, όπως η Qatar Airways, έχουν πλήρη κατάλογο κανόνων και τιμών για τη μεταφορά των φτερωτών πελατών τους.Στα Ηνωμένα Αραβικά Εμιράτα μάλιστα, εκεί που ένα καλό κυνηγετικό γεράκι μπορεί να πιάσει ακόμα και 1 εκατ. δολάρια, τα γεράκια έχουν το δικό τους διαβατήριο. Κι αυτό για να περιοριστεί το φαινόμενο της λαθρεμπορίας των ιπτάμενων αυτών κυνηγών… <!-- -->Κάντε Like το newsbeast.grLet's block ads! (Why?)

Απίθανη αγγελία στην Ξάνθη κάνει τον γύρο του διαδικτύου

Μια απίστευτη αγγελία δημοσιεύθηκε στην Ξάνθη και κάνει τον γύρο του ίντερνετ.Στην αγγελία εικονίζεται ένα παιδί πάνω σε ένα γάιδαρο. Όπως μετέδωσε το, η απίστευτη αγγελία πώλησης αφορά το ζώο και για να μην υπάρξει καμία παρανόηση, μία λεζάντα εξηγεί: «πωλείται χωρίς το παιδί». <!-- -->Κάντε Like το newsbeast.grLet's block ads! (Why?)

Σκύλος διαλύει τζαμαρία κυνηγώντας… το θύμα του

Πρόκειται για ένα βίντεο που δημοσιεύει η βρετανική Daily Mail και δείχνει το κυνηγητό ενός σκύλου και μιας γάτας. Μόνο που για τον πρώτο τα πράγματα ήρθαν λίγο στραβά.Ο άτυχος σκύλος δεν παρατήρησε μια τζαμαρία ενός καταστήματος και κυριολεκτικά την διαλύει στην προσπάθειά του να πιάσει το θύμα του.Η γάτα ωστόσο είχε καταφέρει να περάσει με περίτεχνο τρόπο από τη τζαμαρία χωρίς καν να την ακουμπήσει.Δείτε το βίντεο[embedded content] <!-- -->Κάντε Like το newsbeast.grLet's block ads! (Why?)

Αυτό θα πει «λεφτά αισθήματα»

Μερικές φορές είναι δύσκολο κανείς να βρει τι δώρο θα χαρίσει σε κάποιο αγαπημένο του πρόσωπο. Ωστόσο ο άνδρας αυτός, από την Κίνα, απέδειξε πως ένας σύντροφος μπορεί να είναι πολύ ευρηματικός όταν έρχεται η ώρα να προσφέρει ένα δώρο στην αγαπημένη του. Μπορεί για παράδειγμα να σκεφτεί και να φτιάξει το παρακάτω μπουκέτο…Σύμφωνα με τη Daily Mail, ο άνδρας μπήκε προ ημερών σε ένα ανθοπωλείο με μια τσάντα χαρτονομίσματα και ζήτησε από τον ανθοπώλη να του φτιάξει με αυτά ένα μπουκέτο.Τα λουλούδια στο μπουκέτο των πολύ λεφτών αισθημάτων είναι φτιαγμένα από χαρτονομίσματα συνολικής αξίας 10.000 γιουάν- περίπου 1400 ευρώ δηλαδή- ενώ η σύνθεση προσφέρθηκε στον κοπέλα ως πρωτοχρονιάτικο δώρο, για να ξεκινήσει τη νέα χρονιά του κόκορα με τους καλύτερους οιωνούς. <!-- -->Κάντε Like το newsbeast.grLet's block ads! (Why?)

Πώς να καταστρέψεις το αμάξι σου κάνοντας σκέιτ

Ένας επαγγελματίας του σκέιτμπορντ αποφάσισε να χρησιμοποιήσει έναν πρωτότυπο τρόπο για να χρησιμοποιήσει το παλιό του αυτοκίνητο.Μαζί με την παρέα του το χρησιμοποίησαν για τις ευφάνταστες φιγούρες τους σε διάφορα μέρη.[embedded content] <!-- -->Κάντε Like το newsbeast.grLet's block ads! (Why?)

Το μυστηριώδες… dab στα έδρανα του αγγλικού κοινοβουλίου

Σε μία ανεξήγητη αλλά αρκετά χιουμοριστική κίνηση προέβη ο αναπληρωτής πρόεδρος των Εργατικών στην αγγλική Βουλή. Την στιγμή που οι τόνοι είχαν ανέβει και τη στιγμή που συνάδελφός του τελείωνε την αγόρευσή του για τη Δημόσια υγεία, ο Γουάτσον έκανε την χαρακτηριστική κίνηση που βλέπουμε συχνά σε r’n’b video clips. Δείτε το στιγμιότυπο που μετέδωσε το BBC. <!-- -->Κάντε Like το newsbeast.grLet's block ads! (Why?)

Agency Information Collection Activities; Submission for OMB Review; Comment Request; Access to Employee Exposure and Medical Records – 82:11653-11654

• Publication Date:02/24/2017• Publication Type:Notice• Fed Register #:82:11653-11654• Standard Number:1910.1020• Title:Agency Information Collection Activities; Submission for OMB Review; Comment Request; Access to Employee Exposure and Medical Records [Federal Register Volume 82, Number 36 (Friday, February 24, 2017)] [Notices] [Pages 11653-11654] From the Federal Register Online via the Government Publishing Office [] [FR Doc No: 2017-03669] ======================================================================= ----------------------------------------------------------------------- DEPARTMENT OF LABOR Office of the Secretary Agency Information Collection Activities; Submission for OMB Review; Comment Request; Access to Employee Exposure and Medical Records ACTION: Notice. ----------------------------------------------------------------------- SUMMARY: The Department of Labor (DOL) is submitting the Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA) sponsored information collection request (ICR) titled, "Access to Employee Exposure and Medical Records" to the Office of Management and Budget (OMB) for review and approval for continued use, without change, in accordance with the Paperwork Reduction Act of 1995 (PRA). Public comments on the ICR are invited. DATES: The OMB will consider all written comments that agency receives on or before March 27, 2017. ADDRESSES: A copy of this ICR with applicable supporting documentation; including a description of the likely respondents, proposed frequency of response, and estimated total burden may be obtained free of charge from the Web site at (this link will only become active on the day following publication of this notice) or by contacting Michel Smyth by telephone at 202-693-4129, TTY 202-693-8064, (these are not toll- free numbers) or by email at [email protected] Submit comments about this request by mail or courier to the Office of Information and Regulatory Affairs, Attn: OMB Desk Officer for DOL- OSHA, Office of Management and Budget, Room 10235, 725 17th Street NW., Washington, DC 20503; by Fax: 202-395-5806 (this is not a toll-free number); or by email: [email protected] Commenters are encouraged, but not required, to send a courtesy copy of any comments by mail or courier to the U.S. Department of Labor--OASAM, Office of the Chief Information Officer, Attn: Departmental Information Compliance Management Program, Room N1301, 200 Constitution Avenue NW., Washington, DC 20210; or by email: [email protected] FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT: Contact Michel Smyth by telephone at 202-693-4129, TTY 202-693-8064, (these are not toll-free numbers) or by email at [email protected] Authority: 44 U.S.C. 3507(a)(1)(D). SUPPLEMENTARY INFORMATION: This ICR seeks to extend PRA authority for the Access to Employee Exposure and Medical Records information collection requirements codified in regulations 29 CFR 1910.1020 that require an Occupational Safety and Health Act (OSH Act) covered employer to preserve and to provide access to records associated with workers' exposure to toxic chemicals and harmful physical agents. OSH Act sections 2(b)(9), 6, and 8(c) authorize this information collection. See 29 U.S.C. 651(b)(9), 655, and 657(c). This information collection is subject to the PRA. A Federal agency generally cannot conduct or sponsor a collection of information, and the public is generally not required to respond to an information collection, unless it is approved by the OMB under the PRA and displays a currently valid OMB Control Number. In addition, notwithstanding any other provisions of law, no person shall generally be subject to penalty for failing to comply with a collection of information that does not display a valid Control Number. See 5 CFR 1320.5(a) and 1320.6. The DOL obtains OMB approval for this information collection under Control Number 1218-0065. OMB authorization for an ICR cannot be for more than three (3) years without renewal, and the current approval for this collection is scheduled to expire on February 28, 2017. The DOL seeks to extend PRA authorization for this information collection for three (3) more years, without any change to existing requirements. The DOL notes that existing information collection requirements submitted to the OMB receive a month-to-month extension while they undergo review. For additional substantive information about this ICR, see the related notice published in the Federal Register on September 12, 2016 (81 FR 62766). Interested parties are encouraged to send comments to the OMB, Office of Information and Regulatory Affairs at the address shown in the ADDRESSES section within thirty (30) days of publication of this notice in the Federal Register. In order to help ensure appropriate consideration, comments should mention OMB Control Number 1218-0065. The OMB is particularly interested in comments that: Evaluate whether the proposed collection of information is necessary for the proper performance of the functions of the agency, including whether the information will have practical utility; Evaluate the accuracy of the agency's estimate of the burden of the proposed collection of information, including the validity of the methodology and assumptions used; Enhance the quality, utility, and clarity of the information to be collected; and Minimize the burden of the collection of information on those who are to respond, including through the use of appropriate automated, electronic, mechanical, or other technological collection techniques or other forms of information technology, e.g., permitting electronic submission of responses. Agency: DOL-OSHA. Title of Collection: Access to Employee Exposure and Medical Records. OMB Control Number: 1218-0065. Affected Public: Individuals or Households; Private Sector-- businesses or other for-profits. Total Estimated Number of Respondents: 740,615. Total Estimated Number of Responses: 6,437,597. Total Estimated Annual Time Burden: 717,221 hours. Total Estimated Annual Other Costs Burden: $0. Dated: February 17, 2017. Michel Smyth, Departmental Clearance Officer. [FR Doc. 2017-03669 Filed 2-23-17; 8:45 am] BILLING CODE 4510-26-P Let's block ads! (Why?)