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New Online Essential Certificate dates released

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New Online Essential Certificate dates released

Our Online Essential Certificate is a sell-out success!

Some exciting changes have been afoot at Leiths. Thanks to our partnership with Workshop, a start-up technology business, we’ve moved into the thrilling and limitless world of distance learning.

Our professional Online Essential Certificate course has been so popular, it sold out in January, February, March, April and May, and we’ve just released new dates for June!

We spoke to Josh Taylor, the brains behind the app, to see if his feet have touched the ground...

Hi Josh, so to start us off, could you explain your professional background?

I initially trained as an engineer at the University of Bath before going to work with my brother at SORTEDfood, who are the creators of one of the UK’s most popular online cooking shows. I learnt so much about food, tech and video production that I would later carry through into my work on Workshop.

Workshop is really your ‘baby’, what gave you the idea for it?

Learning new skills is one of my favourite things to do in my spare time. I’ve taken in-person lessons in everything from coding to piano and, with the internet being such a huge pool of knowledge, I assumed that if I wanted to learn online instead, any skill I needed would be just a few clicks away.

But after trying and failing to complete a bunch of online courses and tutorials, I realised that no one had used the power of modern technology to make the process of learning at home any better than learning in the classroom.

So that’s where the idea for Workshop came from! I wanted to develop a better way of learning from home.

What’s so different about Workshop?

Technology gives us the ability to bring teachers and students from around the world together in ways that have never previously been possible.

But rather than developing a new way of teaching that embraces this potential, online course providers tend to copy the traditional lecture-based style of teaching that was never intended for online leaning.

With this problem in mind, I got in touch with Dan, my old housemate and engineering coursemate. After rooting through heaps of academic research on learning behaviours and neuroscience, we built our platform from the ground up, focusing above all else on the idea of “learning by doing”.

By breaking everything down into small steps, Workshop makes the process of learning as simple and straightforward as possible. Learning on Workshop is as simple as setting your phone down, following the instructions you’re given at your own pace, and reflecting on your experience as you go.

Why do you think partnering with Leiths works so well?

While technology allows us to deliver a brain-friendly learning experience, the starting point is always exceptional content.

Everyone we spoke to in the cooking world referred back to Leiths as the benchmark for educational quality, so it was clear that together we could create something truly special.

I believe that Leiths is the best U.K. cookery school; you offer very thorough training, yet you encompass so many international cuisines and you’re constantly evolving. There’s so much potential to develop further courses, and we know you’re open to fresh ideas.

How have you found the creative process?

Working with Leiths has been a dream! With everyone at school so knowledgeable on how to effectively teach culinary students, we’ve been inspired with so many ideas on how to create the best possible experience for online students.

Does an online cookery class have any advantages over a real life cookery class? How can you replicate having an experienced chef by your side to catch you at the point you make a mistake and put you back on course? Or someone to ask questions as they occur to you?

In the stress-free environment of their own home, students have complete control over where and when they take each session of the course.

By joining a small peer group of likeminded learners at the start of the course, students can discuss their individual experiences, troubleshoot any issues and give one another personal feedback throughout.

Every student is also given a direct line to their class mentor, who will always be on hand to provide help and advice.

What’s the best thing about your job generally and creating this course?

Building this course has been such a satisfying process; as an engineer I love to make things and figure out design solutions. Beyond that, the best part of my job is hearing the amazing stories of our users...

The Leiths online course is currently transforming the lives of so many students around the world. They’re following their dreams of becoming professional cooks and some are even starting their own culinary businesses.

Without this course, these people had no way of learning the skills they needed, and so I’m thrilled to play my small part in helping them fulfil their life ambitions.

Jen Coles

Author: Jen Coles

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