The Institute of Technical Education in Singapore always strives to empower its students to pursue pathways to meaningful careers. The public vocational institution currently provides close to 100 courses for secondary school graduates, and continuing education and training for working adults.
Rather than having a purely academic focus, the institute teaches and assesses professional skills and assists school leavers with work placements that correspond to the skills they acquire.
Employers increasingly seek workers who are tech-savvy, able to communicate digitally and visually, and who are creative. The World Economic Forum predicted that by 2020, the three most sought after job skills will be complex problem solving, critical thinking, and creativity.
At the School of Electronics and Infocomm Technology at ITE College West, developing these skills in students was a top priority.
Creativity in and out of the classroom
For students in courses such as IT Applications Development and Web Applications, the priority is to develop their technical abilities at using various software. These technical skills prepare them for careers in the information, communications, and technology industries.
Adobe applications were popular as a tool that can help boost the students’ employability.
The educators at ITE also find that these tools provided an effective way to teach students creative problem solving. When students create digital media like images, layouts, and ePortfolios for class assignments, they gain a deeper understanding of the content they’re working with. In contrast with a “memorise and re-hash” approach, students learn to think more critically and develop problem-solving strategies to meet their project requirements and communication objectives.
Having the freedom to work independently and express themselves in diverse ways through the software also develops their creativity.
Finding future success
Whether engaging with government services or their favourite brands, many users expect seamless and personalised experiences in all their interactions. This in turn increases the demand for experienced designers who are capable of creating omnichannel mobile and web experiences across screens and devices.
To prepare students for this, Aaron Kok, the course manager at the School of Electronics and Infocomm Technology at ITE College West is looking at implementing new electives based around Adobe XD.
The Adobe Creative Cloud application will equip students with user interface/user experience (UI/UX) and wireframing skills, honing their design-thinking capabilities, and enabling them to design and develop the types of seamless mobile and web experiences they have become accustomed to interacting with themselves.
The Adobe team is now working closely with Aaron and his staff to plan and implement Adobe XD workshops to support and equip ITE faculty for the eventual launch of the electives to students.
Instructors and course coordinators at ITE also regularly use Adobe Education Exchange, an online platform for educators around the world to connect and access teaching resources, courses on teaching Adobe Creative Cloud, and share lessons and best practices with the teaching community.
“The world is changing rapidly. We have an imperative to help students develop their creativity and design-thinking skills. These valuable takeaways will carry them through their entire lives, both in and out of work, and enable them to change the world for the better. We are excited to be partnering closely with Adobe to drive this together,” said Kok.