A sample from the new laboratory training exam. Photo: AMS Inc.

The Insulating Glass Certification Council (IGCC) has implemented a new, online training program. The laboratory training exam has been created with a reduced-variability mindset, intended to establish consistency between test standards and testing processes. It has long been a goal of the IGCC certification program to foster consistency in insulting glass standards and testing. To this end, IGCC (through its laboratory subcommittee) has created a series of testing modules. The goal of these modules is to provide training to test operators, facilitate and drive consistency in the test methods, and create documented practices for testing.

For IGCC/Insulating Glass Manufacturers Alliance certification, the laboratory training exam will help to provide participants with a more consistent testing experience with less variability. With animated step-by-step views and multiple-choice questions, the hope is that a clearer interpretation of the standards and procedures for test operators will be created.

The concept grew out of a two-day 2014 IGCC laboratory workshop where insulating glass (IG) test lab operators were invited to collaborate and participate in round robin testing. The result of this workshop was an apparent need for consistent procedures and understandings of test operations.

In an effort to answer this call, IGCC began creating an online tool that utilizes graphics and required use of computer animation.

The IGCC committee found that a written test cannot enhance training like an interactive session can. Integrating interactive learning into education helps take training to new levels. Computer software compliments human understanding, creating an engaging and effective method of learning, according to the organization.

For optimal educational value, the test session is open book and all answers are given after questions are asked. Program coordinator Katrina Stafford says, “This training is intended to help.”

Each question gives participants two opportunities to answer. If incorrect on the first attempt, a hint is prompted for the next chance.

“Our goal is to help direct people to the testing standard and where the information can be found. We don’t expect everything to be memorized. We do, however, want people to know where to find the material when they are either questioning the procedure or the results,” says Stafford.

The overall objective of this new interactive approach is reduced variability and improved consistency.