UpCamp: a Model for IT Skills Training

Universal Design for Learning (UDL) is just one of the main pillars of the model of this Abstracta spin-off that pursues a clear objective: to provide comprehensive IT skills training for inexperienced people and help them enter the job market. The ultimate goal is to enrich the development of the industry and democratize access to work. Learn more about the model in detail in this article!

By Valentina Tortarolo, CEO at upCamp

“We want to be the ‘Scrum Team’ for the induction of junior positions in agile teams”. We repeat this phrase day after day without tiring since this goal has inspired and guided each of our steps for more than 1 year now and with increasing strength.

The IT industry is growing steadily, there are more business opportunities every day and it is evident that more and more professionals are needed for daily work. The only way to add more people is to assume that when they enter the company they will not have experience and to plan the most efficient way to accompany them.

Therefore, beyond benefiting the IT industry and democratizing access to better job opportunities, the incorporation of people without experience in the area is part of strategic thinking.

In this context, with the support of BID Labs, upCamp offers companies a solution that seeks to insert inexperienced people into the IT industry through internships with a comprehensive approach to learning processes. Companies provide access to internships, paid or unpaid, and use upCamp as a platform to carry them out.

To achieve its objectives, we created a competency training model that has a structure and activities necessary to provide trainees (whom we call “campers”) with the skills required to enter the labor market in one of the following roles: Frontend Developer, QA Automator, and manual QA.

These are roles that we have outlined now, but whose technical part can be parameterized to any technological stack. Our methodology focuses on “teaching to work in IT” by developing the socio-labor or psycho-labor skills of each camper.

Focusing on them in a specific way allows us to focus the development of skills on those with the greatest impact on employability and valuable contribution to the type of project they will join, making possible shorter training cycles and accelerating growth.

The results include a pre-project learning period, after which the campers can enter a project with a wide range of skills, concepts, and conditions that will allow them to develop and continue their learning in real environments in an accelerated manner.

Then, after the internship, when campers enter a project they do so knowing how to estimate tasks, plan a sprint, understand the business value to be returned, manage risk on a daily basis, prepare to show business value, and adapt sprint by sprint to improve how they work as a team.

What Does the upCamp Competency Training Model Consist of?

The model has different and varied components that allow the development and growth of the campers: Skill Tree, Profile, and Nano Experiences.

Let’s get to know them one by one:

Skill Tree: when a person enters upCamp, the first thing that is done is to define a set of skills related to a discipline, such as testing, development, or DevOps. The Tree is a kind of map, which serves as a guide to define the profile to be trained.

Profile: This is a document that we deliver to the client company, which involves people’s skills that are relevant to fulfill a specific role in the IT industry.

Nano Experiences: they are the main mechanism to exercise competencies, and are based on the idea of Project Based Learning (PBL). They represent a basic unit of work that implies a complete increase of value to the project on which it is executed.

Learning Processes

Entering the IT industry, with its culture and rhythms, can be an overwhelming experience. Learning at a demanding pace in a new context requires more than memorization, reasoning, and application. It requires an attitude of constant adaptation and reflection.

That is why at upCamp we work with a strong focus on learning processes. For this, in addition to the activities associated with the Nano Experiences, we create other types of instances.

One of them has to do with the incorporation of a metacognition mechanism, aimed at increasing self-knowledge and thus obtaining early feedback on the success or possibility of improving learning strategies.

the success or possibility of improvement of the learning strategies. The ultimate goal of this instance is to consolidate successful strategies and to identify and correct in time those that are not giving results.

We are a company with a strong agile enabler mindset and, as such, we believe in and defend the Scrum pillars. Transparency in each step is key for each camper to take ownership of their process, and to inspect and adapt.

We handle specific criteria both to select the candidates and for them to successfully graduate from the experience. In this way, we ensure that the skills of tomorrow’s Senior have been well-seeded in today’s Juniors.

Would you like to hire upCamp to have a future Senior today? Contact them at [email protected] and get to know in detail all the stages and processes they carry out in their methodology to achieve their goals.

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