Experiences in Applying Significant Learning Taxonomy in 112 Call Takers’ Training


  • Stella Polikarpus
  • Katrin Poom-Valickis




significant learning taxonomy, planning of teaching, developmental research, ADDIE model


The article focuses on the problem of how to increase 112 call taker students’ involvement in the learning process and to create significant learning experiences. The goal of the current study is to create and implement a didactic model for the theme of chemical incidents based on significant learning taxonomy1 that helps to improve 112 call takers’ professional competence. The study was conducted with design-based research, which combines five phases of the non-linear ADDIE model2 (i.e. Analysis, Design, Development, Implementation and Evaluation) with 12 steps of integrated course design3. The research task for the first stage was to analyse the training carried out so far and the new demands for call takers´ curriculum. The task for the design phase was to plan the didactic model for the topic of chemical incidents based on significant learning taxonomy4. In the third phase the model was developed and teaching methods and materials along with evaluation methods were improved. The didactic model was piloted in the academic year of 2014/2015 in a vocational education course in the Estonian Academy of Security Sciences (EASS) and data was collected. Evaluation of the didactic model was carried out in the fifth phase in spring 2015. Different data collection methods were used for the evaluation of the model, e.g. questionnaire, observations and assessment results of the 30 students enrolled in the courses. The didactic model was used again in the autumn semesters of the academic years 2015/2016 and 2016/2017. The outcome of the design-based research is a didactic model for teaching chemical incidents call handling that is based on significant learning model and supports the necessary professional skills, key-competences and student involvement in the learning process. The assignments, evaluation tools and teaching materials compiled within the design-based research are applied in practice. The didactic model itself could be used to develop other curriculums and improve the efficiency of teaching other topics of the researched curriculum and other higher-education and vocational training curriculums. The main suggestions for improving curriculum and teaching are: 1) use significant learning taxonomy for phrasing learning outcomes; 2) develop the implementation timeline and planning forms for the new model that support greater integration of learning outcomes, feedback and assessment methods and teaching learning methods; 3) identification and use of certain topics in a curriculum as an integration theme between different modules; 4) change the assessment method to problem-based assessment and use e-learning environment for assessment; 5) develop e-learning materials and enhance cooperation between teachers.


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