Schools enrolling in BRAKE Driver Awareness courses for 2014 would have access to the new BRAKE Online System or BOS, said BRAKE CEO Rob Duncan.
BOS is an online application that manages many aspects of the BRAKE courses allowing schools, teachers and students to control key parts of the BRAKE course from an online interface.
The BOS application was made possible by a grant from the Queensland State Government through the Jupiters Casino Community Benefit Fund. The State Government distributes some of the money it receives from gambling taxes to not-for-profit community groups, like BRAKE. BRAKE commissioned Info-Onscreen Productions to produce the application.
"Info-Onscreen has been a long-term adviser and supporter of the BRAKE initiative," said Rob Duncan, "And it's team, lead by CEO Peter Smith, has produced a modern, fast and scalable application that will drive down the cost of delivering BRAKE significantly. So with the same resources, we will be able to reach many more schools and students".
The BOS website allows BRAKE and the school administrators and teachers to manage everything from school enquiries, creating classes, managing the accreditation of teachers, student registrations, and running surveys. It integrates well with BRAKE's new website.
BRAKE Administrative Manager Belinda Duncan said, "The most popular feature is an online registration system
which allows students to confirm their enrollment in a BRAKE course
online or by using their mobile phone. Previously enrollment details were hand written or
supplied by spreadsheet files and had to be manually transcribed, making reporting and management difficult."
"This was particularly difficult when we needed to upload data to the Queensland Studies Authority so students who successfully complete the BRAKE course, can be accredited with one QCE point. The BOS application allows us to manage the students and classes efficiently, to track a student's status and to make sure we can communicate with the students after the classroom portion of the program has been completed," said Belinda.
The BRAKE teaching method relies on three multiple choice quizzes to test and reinforce learning and to build knowledge and behaviour resiliency in the students. One of the quizzes is taken in the seventh module of the course. The other two quizzes are followup or reinforcement tests, taken three and six months after the eight part class-room course has been completed.
Previously these tests have been completed on paper and the results input by hand, but now, with BOS, these quizzes can be taken online and the results made available immediately to teachers and school administrators.
With BOS, sending out these three and six month quizzes will be an automatic process. When all three quizzes are complete, the student automatically becomes eligible for the QCE point.
"This is the first part of a planned four part development of the BRAKE Online System," said Chairman of the BRAKE Board, Mr Richard Ponsonby. "This stage effectively gathers and stores information about the courses and the students taking them, and in further stages, we will add further reporting, training and student and teacher interaction into the system. We will also be adding more mobile functionality to BOS."
"We have designed the system so that it works on mobile devices from the get-go," said Info-Onscreen's Peter Smith. "That is important now as most people's first touch with a website is with a smart-phone or a tablet device. That trend is only going to continue, so websites must be designed to be highly usable on a smaller screen. That is one reason BRAKE asked us to update their website recently, because all modern websites need to scale well on mobile phones. So both of BRAKE's websites now fully embrace the mobile world."
The founder and CEO of BRAKE thanked the Queensland Government and the Jupiters Casino Community Benefit Fund for providing the funding that made the BOS application possible.
"We see the funding they have generously provided us as a crucial first step in allowing BRAKE to expand its reach throughout Queensland while keeping the delivery costs of the courses as low as possible. This is an important first step for us in our goal to give senior high school student the information they need to make the right choices when they are beginning to drive. We know that after three or four year of driving, young drivers have a very similar crash and death profile as the rest of the community."
"What BRAKE does is to reduce the risk of such tragedies, tragedies that scar and destroy young lives, by providing young adults with a realistic perspective on the complexity and the risks involved when they first start driving. We believe that the BOS application will be a crucial part of us getting that message out to every young Australian."