Learning Analytics in the Energy Industry: Measuring Competences in Emergency Procedures

Type: Evidence | Proposition: B: Teaching | Polarity: | Sector: | Country:

The paper describes a procedure evaluation/e-training tool (named PeT) for the oil and gas industry, related to the tracking of knowledge and confidence of trainees in emergency operating procedures.

The issue that this kind of tools try to solve is the fact that one of the main responsible for incidents in the oil & gas industry is the lacking of knowledge, both during standard and emergency situations. This lack of training can have serious consequences over the safety of workforce, such as losses of life and serious injuries. But incidents in oil & gas platforms can also lead to severe issues on the productivity of the plant, such as operations downtime, heavy costs and loss of reputation (e.g. the oil spill in the Gulf of Mexico on 2010).

PeT is a training and testing environment for both standard (SOP) and emergency operating procedures (EOP), implementing multiple-choice knowledge tests for two emergency procedures. The main objectives of PeT are:

  • Verify the knowledge of the standard procedures, with the aim to avoid incidents.
  • Ensure that workforce takes appropriate decisions in an emergency setting.
  • Create a competence portfolio for each operator while taking into account his/her past experience and expertise.
  • Provide remedial instructions and feedback to address gaps in the knowledge and competences of operators in the execution of both critical and non-critical tasks.


Concerning Learning Analytics, PeT tracks three kinds of data:

  • Session data, related to the time of completion of the overall knowledge verification session, ID of the employee and code of the operating procedure undertaken.
  • Question data, related to the time an user has spent in each single step of the procedure.
  • Choice data, related to the correctness of answers.


Moreover, the study has introduced an overall confidence metric (for the measurement of the ability of an operator to execute a task, both standard and emergency operating ones, correctly in the proper timeline with an optimal mindset) and a concept of criticality of each step.

The PeT tool has been tested and improved in two separate sessions in an oil & gas company in Canada in 2014. The experiment was conducted with several operators with different backgrounds and different levels of expertise.

Results show that, on the analysed group of workers, PeT is capable to efficiently assess the knowledge and behaviour of workforce in the oil and natural gas industry, in both standard and emergency procedures, ensuring traceable training for operators and leading to greater safety for workforce together with less risk of productivity losses for the plant.

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