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American Prison Data Systems and Data Conversion Laboratory Partner to Digitize Officer Training Content For Prisons
UNPRECEDENTED EFFORT IMPROVES SECURITY, EDUCATION EFFICIENCY, AND REACH OF CURRICULUM
Fresh Meadows, NY - February 8, 2016 – A major challenge facing the corrections industry is the management and delivery of correctional officer training content. Training materials have historically been available only in print form and consequently have prevented the adoption of modern educational technology and techniques in officer training. Through a unique partnership, American Prison Data Systems (APDS) and Data Conversion Laboratory (DCL) have risen to meet this challenge. The two innovative organizations have set out to do something unprecedented in the corrections industry – to make correctional officer training digital. They began in 2015 by digitizing the training content for the New York City Department of Corrections (NYC DOC) Officer Academy.
This solution eliminates the time-consuming and costly process of printing, handing out, and tracking training materials. It also allows administrators to monitor recruit engagement and learning via APDS’ proprietary Learning Management System (LMS), through which the digital content is delivered. The LMS provides data in near real-time and seamlessly integrates multimedia content, such as video, into the training material.
“Traditionally, the corrections industry has been almost uniformly print-based when it comes to training. The NYC DOC Academy trainees used to carry around large, heavy binders, which were cumbersome, difficult to update, and rather insecure,” said Chris Grewe, APDS Founder and CEO. “Working with DCL gave us the expertise to plan the conversion right, from the beginning. This content is now delivered to trainees as they need it, through a secure portal, saving our client thousands in time and resources and providing a much more engaging, efficient, and up-to-date training than was possible previously.”
The initiative began with detailed analysis of the existing training content and the requirements for APDS’ proprietary LMS. “Prior to conversion, we went through an iterative process to identify and plan all the technical specifications of the LMS, agreeing on a SCORM (shareable content objective reference model)-compliant structure as the most suitable approach,” said Greg Fagan, Sales Director at DCL. “The result is a system that can successfully push content on demand, granularly monitor usage, and quickly administer updates to content at scale.”
There are a number of additional benefits to the new LMS content, suggested Grewe, including the ability to integrate rich media into the training curriculum. The Academy can also modularize the curriculum and offer practice tests with instant feedback. As APDS expands its client base, it plans to work with DCL to quickly convert and migrate each client’s content into the LMS, providing highly customized resources to each client’s trainees.
“Our work with APDS shows how a visionary approach to digitizing and managing content assets can transform an industry with benefits to everyone involved,” said DCL President Mark Gross. “We look forward to continuing to support these mission-critical training efforts on behalf of corrections departments across the country.”
American Prison Data Systems (APDS) is a NYC-based Public Benefits Corporation and Certified B Corp, with the mission of making correctional facilities cheaper, safer, and far more effective at reducing recidivism. APDS offers a full-stack, custom mobile tablet solution to bring secure, best-in-class online education, job training, mental health, virtual classroom, library, communications and other rehabilitative resources to incarcerated individuals. APDS has been safely deployed in prisons, jails, probation, and alternative-to-incarceration programs around the country since mid-2014, and has served over a million hours of programming to tablet users.