Vamia uses a simulated accessible living environment in education
Welfare technologies are revolutionising social and health care. In the future, care professionals will work in high tech environments. As a forerunner in welfare technology education, Vamia Vocational Institute has invested in developing a simulated environment of accessible living – VamiaEasy. It was introduced in 2021.
“VamiaEasy is a model of a smart home full of energy efficient welfare technology and automation solutions that make everyday life easier and safer for the elderly. It allows our students to learn about these technologies in an authentic environment”, says Principal Åsa Stenbacka.
A medication dispensing robot, motion detectors, robotic therapy cats and dolls, voice-activated lights, and a motorised kitchen cupboard – these are just a few of the many modern solutions utilised in VamiaEasy, opening new opportunities for social and health care education.
“Our students can practise practical working life situations with the help of teachers trained in simulation pedagogy. Students can act as patients or care professionals and create simulated scenarios that are filmed and later analysed in more detail”, explains Magdalena Vähäkangas, Welfare Services Lecturer.
However, other educational fields can also benefit from the simulated environment.
“The technologies require maintenance and programming, which makes it possible to use VamiaEasy in IT technology and electrical engineering education, for example”, points out Toni Boren, Head of Division.
Developed within the TechnoFuture project, VamiaEasy was designed and built in cooperation with multiple partners, such as ABB, a provider of electrical equipment. On top of enhancing regional cooperation, VamiaEasy offers learning opportunities for external customers as well.
“A learning environment like this can also be utilised in the training of social and health care workers. In addition, it enables companies to present their new welfare technology solutions and receive feedback”, says Stenbacka.