An Education Hub aiming to improve teaching among architectural ironmongers, door manufacturers and door hardware professionals around the world has been launched by the Guild of Architectural Ironmongers (GAI).

The GAI says the Hub puts educational resources produced by the GAI online for the first time. Materials are designed for those studying towards gaining its Certificate in Architectural Hardware, the GAI Diploma and the Guild’s continuing professional development (CPD) programme.

The GAI has been providing an education, qualification and CPD programme for the international architectural ironmongery industry since 1961. It provides the only recognised programme in the world that leads to a qualification in architectural ironmongery to British and European standards.

There are more than 2,500 GAI Diploma holders to date. Students on the GAI education programme come from 23 different countries, and 44% of those who studied last year were from outside the UK.

Maria Powell, president of the GAI said: "Students will now be guided through their learning in a much more accessible and engaging way. We are entirely transforming the Diploma syllabus, putting learning resources online and making them available to hardware professionals throughout the world.

"Essential content, ease of understanding and global access are vital to the new Education Hub. This new resource from the GAI is taking learning into the 21st century, offering an enhanced, interactive learning platform to an international audience."

Rachel Tipton, GAI’s education manager, said: “The impetus for change to the GAI's education programme and the idea for the Education Hub was prompted by recommendations from a working party of our members and past and present students.

“They identified the changes needed to the core curriculum, and decided that the method of delivery should be entirely online, be adapted and enhanced to include modern learning processes, and be globally accessible.”

The GAI’s Certificate in Architectural Hardware consists of two stages, with a total of 24 updated education modules covering everything a practicing architectural ironmonger is required to know. The modules include helpful explanations, animations and video clips, all geared to engage learners in easily digestible chunks.

These resources are now entirely online, including all course work and exams, and can be studied in any order with unlimited self-tests. Automation of exam results will ensure that learners know their results within days rather than weeks.

Beyond the Certificate, learners can continue their studies to achieve the GAI Diploma. This third stage now focuses entirely on the skills and learning needed for scheduling, of crucial importance to those AIs working with architects and contractors of projects being built to UK and European standards across the globe.

Further information, including a taster of the e-learning modules, testing knowledge of basic scheduling considerations for door hardware products, is available at:

Image: a screenshot of the Education Hub taster session