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ERIC Number: ED519656
Record Type: Non-Journal
Publication Date: 2009-Apr
Pages: 58
Abstractor: ERIC
Reference Count: N/A
ISBN: ISBN-978-1-1001-5702-3
Evaluation of the Training Centre Infrastructure Fund (TCIF). Final Report
Human Resources and Skills Development Canada
The Training Centre Infrastructure Fund (TCIF) was initially announced in Budget 2004 and represented an immediate measure of the broader Workplace Skills Strategy. TCIF was a three-year $25 million pilot project, designed to address the growing need for union-employer training centres to replace aging equipment and simulators that were not up to current industry standards. TCIF was terminated after the first year in September 2006 as part of cost-saving measures resulting from an expenditure review process, hence not completing the full duration of the pilot. The Government of Canada decided to make investments which focused on direct contributions to individuals and employers, such as the measures announced in the Budget 2006--the Apprenticeship Incentive Grant, the Apprenticeship Job Creation Tax Credit, and the Tools Tax Deduction. During it existence, 46 projects were funded with $6.5 million distributed to Union Training Centres (UTCs) across Canada in amounts ranging from under $20,000 to $465,000, with the average agreement being approximately $150,000. This evaluation of the Training Centre Infrastructure Fund (TCIF) focuses on program rationale and relevance, results or success, and cost-effectiveness. The evaluation gathered information from four different lines of inquiry: 1) review of program documents and files; 2) literature review including sources from Canada, United States, Australia and Great Britain; 3) 14 key informant interviews; and 4) a survey of 66 UTC administrators who applied for funding. The findings indicate that overall TCIF was successful in achieving its intended outcomes as indicated by the following: (1) TCIF did help to leverage funds through the 50% contribution by UTCs, with a majority indicating their UTC's trust funds overall expenditures on training equipment increased the year they received funding compared to previous years; (2) New partnerships were established by 47% of the UTCs funded; (3) There is evidence that the equipment purchased with TCIF funding responded to the changing technological needs of the industries; (4) The new equipment resulted in changes to training including more hands-on opportunity, additional courses and changes to existing curriculum. Experts and external key informants emphasized the importance of hands-on training in order to maximize the benefits of training; (5) UTCs reported that they believed that the skills acquired during training were applied in the work setting because the equipment was similar or identical to that funded by TCIF; (6) UTC representatives indicated that training on TCIF-funded equipment did lead to job enrichment and/or increased opportunities; and (7) TCIF has positively contributed to the existing skill gap through providing trained workers. However, it is impossible to measure the actual impact of TCIF on the skill gap since other factors, such as wage growth, vacancies, turnover and demographics, also impact on the skill gap. Based on the information from the survey, over 10,000 people have been trained on TCIF-funded equipment between the time of purchase and the time of the survey in summer of 2008. It was also seen by some key informants to motivate the private sector to contribute more. The preceding suggests that TCIF may be an effective approach. However, it cannot be concluded that it is the best approach nor that is a cost-effective approach. Appendices include: (1) Program Logic Model; (2) Evaluation Issues and Questions Matrix; and (3) Bibliography. (Contains 10 tables and 35 footnotes.)
Human Resources and Skills Development Canada. Service Canada, Ottawa, ON K1A 0J9, Canada. Tel: 800-926-9105; Fax: 613-941-1827; Web site:
Publication Type: Reports - Research
Education Level: Adult Education
Audience: N/A
Language: English
Sponsor: N/A
Authoring Institution: Human Resources and Skills Development Canada
Identifiers - Location: Canada