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Can learning save lives? (Absolutely)

Can learning save lives? (Absolutely)

If you had to perform first aid to save a life, would you know what to do? Fear not. Velma Ganassini and Sheridan students created interactive videos to teach you how.

For most learners, school isn’t a life-or-death proposition. For Velma Ganassini’s students, it might well be. She is the owner and Program Co-ordinator for SOS First Aid and Safety Training, a company that offers WSIB-approved first-aid training.

Velma found that traditional teaching methods didn’t give students enough of a real-life experience.

“Instructors use mock situations to help students make decisions when giving first aid. But role play isn’t very realistic or engaging for adult learners,” said Velma.

What she needed was a new teaching tool, something interactive that bridged the gap between classroom learning and real-life application.

For help, she turned to Sheridan College and the Federal Economic Development Agency for Southern Ontario (FedDev Ontario) and its Applied Research and Commercialization Initiative. Sheridan commissioned its Sheridan Production House (SPH) to help Velma develop and produce five interactive training videos that cover different medical emergencies.

More than a dozen students and graduates from programs such as Media Arts, Journalism-Broadcast, Animation and Music Theatre collaborated to bring these videos to life. They were involved in all aspects of the production cycle: scripting, budgeting, location scouting, casting, location setups, camera, audio, lighting, directing, editing, mixing and graphics.

“The students and graduates gained first-hand experience working with clients, technologists and professional actors and gained valuable insight into all aspects of the production cycle, both creative and technical,” said Sandy McKean, Sheridan’s Associate Dean in the Faculty of Animation, Arts and Design and Director of the SPH.

“The icing on the cake is a strong, professional portfolio that will better position them for a career in the industry,” he added.

The videos are getting rave reviews from industry experts, fellow instructors and students. “These training modules give first aid instructors better visual and realistic training tools that will enhance learning,” said Velma.