On Assignment
The Future of Training; Training for the Future
Technology meets training in the Home Team.

The Home Team Academy’s (HTA) 2019 Workplan Seminar 2019 reveals how the Home Team is incorporating cutting-edge technologies into the training and development of officers. Here are three highlights: 

1. Learning in a Virtual Prison
In one scenario, an argument erupts between two inmates in the prison yard; in another, an inmate collapses while exercising in the yard. These are just some scenarios that Prison officers can face while on the job.

And preparing them for such contingencies is a new Virtual Reality (VR) training simulation system from the Singapore Prison Service (SPS) that’s modelled after real operating environments.

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Virtually “imprisoned”: An SPS officer demonstrating the use of the VR system. PHOTO: Muhamad Khair

Designed to test the decision-making process of officers, the VR system provides an immersive learning experience and can escalate or de-escalate a scenario depending on the officer’s responses.

This new technology saves time and space – one VR workstation can train up to four officers and the scenarios can be consistently re-created to refine responses. It also saves space as each VR workstation can be as small as 5m by 5m. Training sessions can also be played back to review the performance of participants.

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Foot sensors allow the user to walk in the VR simulation. PHOTO: Muhamad Khair

The VR system was first trialled in February 2019, and a second trial is planned for the later part of this year. The training results have been positive and the system will be fine-tuned further before it is fully implemented.

2. Smart Glasses and the Home Team’s Very Own Digital Assistant?
The Home Team School of Criminal investigation (HTSCI) plans to use voice-controlled smart glasses equipped with Augmented Reality (AR) technology to train investigators. The system lets users see digital object overlays through the glasses while also allowing instructors to communicate with trainees and conduct training remotely.

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Home Team goes high-tech: Using AR technology, fluorescent powder was “applied” on the box and fingerprints were “uncovered”. PHOTO: Muhamad Khair

The HTSCI is also looking to develop an Intelligent Learning Assistant that provides information to ground officers during complex situations. Using speech-to-text technology and artificial intelligence, the system allows investigators to access up-to-date information on the go. Both projects are in the exploratory stage and will be developed after further trials.

3. Training for the Future
The Immigration & Checkpoints Authority (ICA) is helping its officers raise their digital competencies by collaborating with Singapore Polytechnic on an eight-week Basic Digital Confidence Course.

The Course equips officers with the fundamentals of digital media literacy and prepares them for the ever-changing digital landscape. Such programmes are increasingly crucial as ICA incorporates biometrics, automation and data analytics into its operations.

Almost 40 ICA officers have successfully completed the Course since its inaugural run in October 2018. ICA aims to roll our more customised programmes to support its officers.

Additionally, HTA is working to develop a Certificate of Home Team Studies with the Singapore University of Social Sciences (SUSS) come January 2020. The certificate will see SUSS accrediting basic training programmes by the Home Team and will count towards attaining an SUSS degree. HTA has also worked with NIE International to raise the pedagogical knowledge and instructional skills of Home Team trainers.

HTA Workplan Seminar 2019

Home Team 2019 Workplan Seminars
Tech Spotlight: Checkpoint Transformation (ICA)
Tech Spotlight: The Future of Emergency Services (SCDF)
Strengthening the Ties that Bind (SPS)
New Jobs, New Lives (SCORE)
Tech Spotlight: The Future of Policing (SPF)
Eyes in the Sky to Guide Boots on the Ground (SPF)
© 2019 Ministry of Home Affairs, Singapore. All Rights Reserved.

  1. by Muhamad Khair
  2. 23 May 2019
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