Pawsey Training Goes Remote: Experiences and Best Practices

Ann Backhaus, Sarah Beecroft, Lachlan Campbell, Maciej Cytowski, Marco De La Pierre, Luke Edwards, Pascal Elahi, Alexis Espinosa Gayosso, and Yathu Sivarajah

Volume 12, Issue 2 (February 2021), pp. 25–30

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  author={Ann Backhaus and Sarah Beecroft and Lachlan Campbell and Maciej Cytowski and Marco De La Pierre and Luke Edwards and Pascal Elahi and Alexis Espinosa Gayosso and Yathu Sivarajah},
  title={Pawsey Training Goes Remote: Experiences and Best Practices},
  journal={The Journal of Computational Science Education},
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The Pawsey Supercomputing Centre training has evolved over the past decade, but never as rapidly as during the COVID-19 pandemic. The imperative to quickly move all training online — to reach learners facing travel restrictions and physical distancing requirements — has expedited our shift online. We had planned to increase our online offerings, but not at this pace or to this extent. In this paper, we discuss the challenges we faced in making this transition, including how to creatively motivate and engage learners, build our virtual training delivery skills, and build communities across Australia. We share our experience in using different learning methods, tools, and techniques to address specific educational and training purposes. We share trials and successes we have had along the way. Our guiding premise is that there is no universal learning solution. Instead, we purposefully select various solutions and platforms for different groups of learners.