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Arsholeprentice
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If my apprentice is watching a video and has a question, he comes to one of the Journeymen the next day to get the answer.....

Course work is vital, but will never replace hands on learning. Learning the mathematics of your bends is much faster and simpler when you are applying it as you learn it.
 

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... do you think these types of learners would do well learning from an online or computer-based program?
Since you seem insistent on an answer to that question, I will tell you that my answer is, overwhelmingly, no. The successful electrician does not have the temperament to sit for an online class.
 

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I learned most of what I know with OJT, self education (reading before online existed), talking and listening and a few seminars. And a whole lot of thinking about the subject.


If you want to learn you can, some guys are content being average others want more. How many electricians are there in the USA, how many bother to come to sites like this to ask questions and learn?
 

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Since you seem insistent on an answer to that question, I will tell you that my answer is, overwhelmingly, no. The successful electrician does not have the temperament to sit for an online class.
Part of what you say is the truth. There is a certain amount of accountability that humans need to have present in order to do the correct thing in a learning institution. I received my learning from the traditional methods but really enjoy the on-line information because I like to DELVE deeper.
 

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More than lead and elbows
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I learned most of what I know with OJT, self education (reading before online existed), talking and listening and a few seminars. And a whole lot of thinking about the subject.


If you want to learn you can, some guys are content being average others want more. How many electricians are there in the USA, how many bother to come to sites like this to ask questions and learn?
I try to read a new book on something trade related every 2-3 months. It doesn't always happen (wife, kids, work, etc.) but I try. Also this site, and other online pages have so much info and experience. It's endless!
 

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More than lead and elbows
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579 Posts
What, in regards to electricity would you want to know???:thumbsup:
Haha! I've got so much to learn! I got in the trade in 07 so I don't even have ten years in yet! Some of you guys on here blow me away with how much you know. Just the sheer amount of time you're eyeballs have put in has me bewildered! Right now I'm really looking at underground transmission cable, Also advanced motor controls theory is always on my list, I never got to see much of it other than in the apprenticeship.
 

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...

Here's a training tip for you... don't train (except in your very specific niche field). Instead, take this old tip.... slow to hire, quick to fire. You'll crew up with higher quality guys more quickly that way than you ever will by spinning your wheels trying to train them.
If all contractors did that we would have a much higher quality labor pool.
 

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I own stock in FotoMat!
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39,115 Posts
Haha! I've got so much to learn! I got in the trade in 07 so I don't even have ten years in yet! Some of you guys on here blow me away with how much you know. Just the sheer amount of time you're eyeballs have put in has me bewildered! Right now I'm really looking at underground transmission cable, Also advanced motor controls theory is always on my list, I never got to see much of it other than in the apprenticeship.

As Marc points out, this type of attitude is one that can be trained.

If the employee has an "I'm just in it for a paycheck" attitude, you just ain't gonna train them. Not no way, not no how. That type of person will do equally well working in all sorts of entry-level jobs, but will never advance past that.
 

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I learned most of what I know with OJT, self education (reading before online existed), talking and listening and a few seminars. And a whole lot of thinking about the subject.


If you want to learn you can, some guys are content being average others want more. How many electricians are there in the USA, how many bother to come to sites like this to ask questions and learn?
I've been the same way, but how do you find guys like you and I (guys like participate on this forum)? How do you find the people with a passion for the trade; a passion for learning? I've been thinking a lot about that the last couple days.

Traditionally, when hiring TRAINED electricians, a company will:
-Give a knowledge test, either by oral interview or written test
-Occasionally move on to some version of a hand's on test

This shows that an electrician can do the job, but do they have the willingness or capacity to learn even more beyond what they know already?

Traditionally, when hiring SEMI-trained electricians/helpers, a company will:
-Give a knowledge test, either by oral interview or written test
-Give a general aptitude test to try to determine if they have the ability to learn more.

This shows that an electrician has some skill, may be able to learn more things, but does not accurately gauge whether he has the willingness or passion to learn more.

Traditionally, when hiring UN-trained helpers, a company will:
-Give an oral interview to try to gauge temperament
-Give a general aptitude test to try to determine if they have the ability to learn trade topics.

This shows that a person will probably fit in the culture of the company and should be able to learn some things. This still does not gauge his willingness or desire to do more than earn a paycheck, as Ken rightly assesses it.

&&&&&&&&&&&&&& (ode to Telsa)

The huge thing that's missing from the hiring process (and this goes directly to the training process) is the gauge or test of a man's willingness and passion to learn even more. We can test what he knows. We can test his general aptitude. We can't test his DESIRE. We can't test his PASSION. I have a couple of ideas on how that could be done, but I'll end this post here. I submit that until we can sort out those with desire, getting the puzzle of how to train electricians solved is a moot point.
 

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More than lead and elbows
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Like you said Shunk, good electricians are already working. Probably making good money, at a good place to work. When I was unhappy, it wasn't hard to move on. I'm still getting offers from contractors and utilities, but right now I really enjoy where I'm at. If that changes, I'll move on just as easily.
 
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