The BC Open Textbook Project began in 2012 with the goal of making post-secondary education in British Columbia more accessible by reducing student cost through the use of openly licensed textbooks. The BC Open Textbook Project is administered by BCcampus and is funded by the British Columbia Ministry of Advanced Education.
Open textbooks are open educational resources (OER); they are instructional resources created and shared in ways so that more people have access to them. This is a different model than traditionally copyrighted materials. OER are defined as teaching, learning, and research resources that reside in the public domain or have been released under an intellectual property licence that permits their free use and repurposing by others (Hewlett Foundation). Our open textbooks are openly licensed using a Creative Commons licence, and are offered in various e-book formats free of charge, or as printed books that are available at cost. For more information about this project, please contact . If you are an instructor who is using this book for a course, please let us know.
The concept of identifying and creating resources for skills that are common to many trades has a long history in the Province of British Columbia. This collection of Trades Access Common Core (TACC) resources was adapted from the 15 Trades Common Core line modules co-published by the Industry Training and Apprenticeship Commission (ITAC) and the Centre for Curriculum Transfer and Technology (C2T2) in 2000-2002. Those modules were revisions of the original Common Core portion of the TRAC modules prepared by the Province of British Columbia Ministry of Post-Secondary Education in 1986. The TACC resources are still in use by a number of trades programs today and, with the permission from the Industry Training Authority (ITA), have been utilized in this project.
These open resources have been updated and realigned to match many of the line and competency titles found in the Province of BC’s trades apprenticeship program outlines. A review was carried out to analyze the provincial program outlines of a number of trades, with the intent of finding common entry-level learning tasks that could be assembled into this package. This analysis provided the template for the outline used to update the existing modules. Many images found in ITA apprentice training modules were also incorporated into these resources to create books that are similar to what students will see when they continue their chosen trades training. The project team has also taken many new photographs for this project, which are available for use in other trades training resources.
The following list of lines and competencies was generated with the goal of creating an entry-level trades training resource, while still offering the flexibility for lines to be used as stand-alone books. This flexibility—in addition to the textbook content being openly licensed—allows these resources to be used within other contexts as well. For example, instructors or institutions may incorporate these resources into foundation-level trades training programming or within an online learning management system (LMS).
Line A – Safe Work Practices
- A-1 Control Workplace Hazards
- A-2 Describe WorkSafeBC Regulations
- A-3 Handle Hazardous Materials Safely
- A-4 Describe Personal Safety Practices
- A-5 Describe Fire Safety
Line B – Employability Skills
- B-1 Apply Study and Learning Skills
- B-2 Describe Expectations and Responsibilities of Employers and Employees
- B-3 Use Interpersonal Communication Skills
- B-4 Describe the Apprenticeship System
Line C – Tools and Equipment
- C-1 Describe Common Hand Tools and Their Uses
- C-2 Describe Common Power Tools and Their Uses
- C-3 Describe Rigging and Hoisting Equipment
- C-4 Describe Ladders and Platforms
Line D – Organizational Skills
- D-1 Solve Trades Mathematical Problems
- D-2 Apply Science Concepts to Trades Applications
- D-3 Read Drawings and Specifications
- D-4 Use Codes, Regulations, and Standards
- D-5 Use Manufacturer and Supplier Documentation
- D-6 Plan Projects
Line E – Electrical Fundamentals
- E-1 Describe the Basic Principles of Electricity
- E-2 Identify Common Circuit Components and Their Symbols
- E-3 Explain Wiring Connections
- E-4 Use Multimeters
All of these textbooks are available in a variety of formats in addition to print:
- PDF—printable document with TOC and hyperlinks intact
- HTML—basic export of an HTML file and its assets, suitable for use in learning management systems
- Reflowable EPUB—format that is suitable for all screen sizes including phones
All of the self-test questions are also available from BCcampus as separate data, if instructors would like to use the questions for online quizzes or competency testing.
About This Book
In an effort to make this book a flexible resource for trainers and learners, the following features are included:
- An introduction outlining the high-level goal of the Competency, and a list of objectives reflecting the skills and knowledge a person would need to achieve to fulfill this goal.
- Discrete Learning Tasks designed to help a person achieve these objectives
- Self-tests at the end of each Learning Task, designed to informally test for understanding.
- A reminder at the end of each Competency to complete a Competency test. Individual trainers are expected to determine the requirements for this test, as required.
- Throughout the textbook, there may also be links and/or references to other resources that learners will need to access, some of which are only available online.
- Notes, cautions, and warnings are identified by special symbols. A list of those symbols is provided below.