The International Training Institute is making it easier for sheet metal apprentices and journeymen to carry their coarse work. The organization has made more than 100 of its textbooks available on the Apple iPad. The electronic curriculum will later be available with Windows laptop computers and other tablet devices.

“We want to keep up with technology because it’s where this industry is moving, and we don’t want sheet metal workers to be afraid of it,” said Mike Harris, program administrator with the ITI. “We threw this idea out to the apprentices and instructors, and they all think it’s a good idea.”

The mobile content delivery system offers an interface with search capabilities, off-line access to downloaded content, password protection, non-stop encryption, push notification ability, and zoom capabilities.

Apprentices and journeymen must be granted access to the texts through TotalTrack, a proprietary comprehensive database that puts all apprentice and journeyman information in one place, which can assign an e-text automatically available for download on their iPad devices.

TotalTrack hosts student contact information, assignments and course syllabus as well as grade books and forms for instructors. By 2013, ITI says that all of the 160 sheet metal training centers will be using TotalTrack.

“The two systems together will make life, and learning, a whole lot easier for apprentices and journeymen,” Harris said. “Technology is important in this industry, and it’s important they learn to use it to their advantage. Having your text books on a tablet, virtually in your back pocket, is definitely an advantage.” For more information about ITI, visit www.sheetmetal-iti.org.