National e-Learning Initiative Brings CPIC Training Online

The Canadian Police Knowledge Network (CPKN) and the Police Sector Council (PSC), with Canadian Police Information Centre (CPIC), have launched a national e-learning initiative featuring an online version of the CPIC Query/Narrative training program. This project will merge CPKN's technical know-how with CPIC expertise and PSC's strategic approach for effective human resource management to create an interactive e-learning course to benefit law enforcement agencies across Canada.

Scheduled for launch in the Spring, the CPIC course is designed to provide users with the skills required to query CPIC Data Banks, analyze the responses, and send narrative traffic messages using the CPIC System. This course will be delivered in both French and English and will be offered as an alternative to traditional classroom training sessions to all law enforcement personnel.

"Many organizations are constrained by the time and cost commitments surrounding conventional training programs," says Chief Superintendent Gord Finck, Director General for CPIC. "An online training option will not only significantly decrease the costs associated with attending a classroom-based program, but will reduce training time from three days to approximately six hours."

Funded by PSC, through the Federal Government's Sector Council Program, the development of this online course is a "pilot" of a larger project which will examine the application of e-learning for effective long-term human resource management in the Canadian policing sector. The PSC recognizes that police organizations are faced with numerous human resource challenges. There are significant gaps in the workforce continuum where many of the most experienced personnel are nearing retirement while almost 25% have less than five years of experience. As the sector experiences increasingly complex criminality and a growing demand for new and advanced skills, appropriate training for police is of particular concern.

The PSC is committed to enabling the Canadian policing sector to identify practical solutions to HR challenges - this project will create a benchmark against which national e-learning education and training can be assessed.

"This project is essential for understanding sector requirements and responses to e-learning," says Geoff Gruson, Executive Director of PSC. "We believe it will create the basis for a standardized approach to national training initiatives, while demonstrating efficiency, improved productivity, and enhanced performance for officers."

Prior to official launch of the CPIC Query/Narrative course, a nation-wide pilot will be conducted to allow CPKN researchers to evaluate a variety of factors, including:

  • the practicalities of offering national e-learning solutions for 'just-in-time' learning;
  • the uptake and cost benefit/feasibility of e-learning on a national scale; learner satisfaction; and
  • instructional soundness and effectiveness (i.e. learner retention and skills/ knowledge transfer)

This is the first comprehensive study to examine the delivery of sector-wide e-learning education and training. It will provide valuable data on the potential for increased training efficiencies and cost savings and will form the basis of a national e-learning strategy for the Fall of 2007.