HITO offer apprenticeships and on-the-job training qualifications in hairdressing, barbering and beauty therapy.


HITO needed to provide just-in-time, on-the-job learning to apprentice hairdressers, as well as replace their old cardboard portfolio-based formal assessment.

These learners may often have low literacy levels, poor access to PCs in the workplace, and varying levels of motivation to engage in formal learning and assessment. They are frequently studying solo and are based all over the country. However, most have internet-capable phones.

We needed to create a solution that was phone-based, had low literacy requirements, allowed learners to self-check their understanding, actively engaged learners, and allowed them to present evidence of their work electronically.


A mobile student learning portal was developed, including;

  • Just-in-time learning using video, complete with a voiceover and written summary of key points.
  • Formative assessment quizzes allow learners to self-check their understanding of each video.
  • Fully online portfolio creation, editing, and submission.
  • Badges to recognise and reward achievement.
  • A communications channel for news and notices.

The solution designed by Wavelength and developed by Touchtech includes:

  • Mobile phone and tablet apps for Android and iPhone.
  • A matching responsive site is suitable for phones, tablets, and PCs.
  • An administration site optimised for PCs.


  • There was over 22 per cent uptake in this time (2 per cent more than the project goal of 20 per cent), and 88 per cent of the learner reactions were positive.
  • We judged the success of the learning videos by analysing the results stored for the formative assessment quizzes.
  • Over 86 per cent of the quiz scores were over 60 per cent, indicating that the videos successfully taught the key learning points.
  • Feedback from trainers indicates that apprentices are finding the portal useful for preparing for formal assessments – and it’s even finding use as a refresher for fully-trained hairdressers in some salons.
  • This portal won a Learning Technologies Silver award in the Best Use of Mobile Learning category and a silver award for L&D Technology of the year from NZATD.

“VUE helps HITO staff in doing their jobs. It’s particularly useful for field staff who don’t have a hairdressing background – it gives us a reference if apprentices or trainers have any technical questions. We can refer them to VUE and know they get the right answer.”

Shelly Forbes, Wellington HITO Sales and Liaison Manager.