About Us

Developing sophisticated, coherent, and impactful training is central to a productive and engaged workforce.  The process, however, of developing a highly functional, tailored training system is not straightforward.  Successful training is not only about great training content but also about organisational values, clearly defined roles and responsibilities, responsive learning management systems, equity of access, well-articulated standards, and assessment process.


We at the Centre for Advanced Training Systems, bring expertise from organizational psychology, neurosicence, physiology, engineering, education, learning and instructional design to work with our partners to optimise their training systems.

Overview of ATS

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The Problem

Over the past two decades, digital transformation has swept across all industry sectors and is fundamentally changing businesses, institutions and organisations. Both the volume of communication within the workplace and the diversity of professions that work together have dramatically increased. Amplifying these changes has been the speed at which new technologies emerge. The ever-increasing rate with which new technologies are appearing has led to the concept of ‘exponential technology emergence’. Collectively, these conditions are a challenge for all workplaces, which must now find a way to adapt.

A major question that many organisations are now being forced to ask is:

How do we take on new approaches to remain up-to-date, without fundamentally disrupting or compromising our existing practises?

We believe that the answer to this question is relatively simple; it relates to training.

The main challenge now lies in determining what type of training is required in new and highly dynamic environments.

Historically, training was based around three main aspects:

  1. Pre-existing knowledge imparted via vocational or college-based education
  2. Static workplace knowledge transfer approaches (e.g. digital presentations, policy documents and manuals)
  3. Presenter-driven updates (e.g. workshops, conferences)

It is increasingly clear that these training approaches are no longer sufficient to seamlessly respond to ever-changing and evolving conditions. Even a superficial analysis of training approaches indicates that the general model has evolved very little in the last two decades. Current training approaches have limited scalability, are difficult to quality-control and are often poorly suited to training practical workplace skills.

Our Team & Our Role

At the Centre for Advanced Training Systems (ATS), we recognised the need to modernise training approaches. Our focus is on working with organisations to develop, implement and evaluate new training approaches that take advantage of digital platforms, particularly digital simulation platforms.


Importantly, we do not build these platforms in isolation. We work with partners to identify and develop solutions that are aligned with their needs. We integrate established concepts and ideas from research on physiology, psychology and neuroscience to enhance the teaching programs we develop. We also actively engage in research to optimise the development of training tools, document their efficacy and inform implementation strategies. We then engage with organisations to facilitate implementation of training solutions to ensure these resources get into the hands of users to deliver training outcomes. In doing so, we use a scientific approach with structured evaluations and assessment processes to ensure training platforms achieve the desired objectives.

The Solution

Training can fail staff and fail for organisations for literally dozens of reasons.  Common reasons include that the training does not have well defined objectives, the skill transfer process has not been modernised, time pressures have driven minimum standards down, limited feedback quality and impaired assessment sophistication. Some of these issues can be addressed by re-examining training products and processes.  However, other elements require broader consideration of how training is structured and managed, how is financially underpinned, how its impact back to the organisation is quantified. 

Noting the many potential points of failure, we at the Centre for Advanced Training Systems seek to first to work with our partners to consider where the best points for intervention are and then move to develop a targeted action plan.

Augmented Reality (AR)


We have developed and delivered dozens on unique training solutions customised to the organsiations training needs.  First and foremost in these solutions is clear training objectives, that can be independently verified post-training.

Virtual Reality (VR)

Virtual Reality (XR/VR)

VR is the most commonly used form of digital simulation technology. It provides the most immersive experience and supports interaction within a 3D-simulated environment. VR requires the use of a headset and often incorporates a hand-held device to support interaction.



From a learners perspective a large amount of conventional desktop training is terrible.  Often content is designed to transfer information, and manage liability, rather than impart genuinely useful skills.   We work to create engaging and immersive desktop learning experiences for staff.

Historically, these technologies have been used mostly for gaming applications. Research trials of XR-based training technologies indicate that they increase user engagement and improve knowledge transfer, particularly for procedural skills development. This supports the suitability and value of these technologies in education and training.

For new technologies to be effective, they must be seamlessly integrated into the local training ecosystem. To support this, we also develop detailed data capture, analytics and reporting frameworks.

End-to-end Project Management

We deliver trusted, independent and expert advice and end-to-end project management to develop training applications that are sustainable, effective and personalised to your needs.

ATS connects content experts and technology developers with internal research expertise, to support the development of custom training solutions that meet your project’s needs.

  • We apply scientifically-established concepts and research findings from the fields of physiology, neuroscience and psychology into real world training systems to bridge the evidence-practice gap
  • We focus on training objectives and outcomes to ensure the final product is suitable and addresses identified needs
  • We provide or source content expertise, to ensure training content is up-to-date and evidence-based
  • We coordinate technology experts to ensure the most appropriate approach is used
  • We provide end-to-end project management to support training programme implementation, assessment and report outcomes
  • We coordinate research to validate the final training program

The Centre for Advanced Training Systems (ATS) partners with stakeholder organisations to develop customised workforce training solutions to address identified training needs.

Our projects are funded on a project-specific basis and focus on improving workplace training in three main areas; Defence, Health, and Education.

We have partnered with numerous organisations, including the Australian Department of Defence (Army and Air Force) and Hunter New England Area Health, to design, implement and deliver tailored training solutions that address their specific organisational needs.

ATS sets itself apart by integrating research evidence and data capture into all stages of the development process. This ensures the development of tailored, fit-for-purpose, evidence-based programs that seamlessly integrate into existing training frameworks.

We have been fortunate to collaborate with the following organisations to design, develop, evaluate or provide advice on training

If you are interested in developing a specific training programme in collaboration with the Centre for Advanced Training Systems (ATS), we would like to hear from you. Send us an email or access the Contact Us page to get in touch with our team.

Designing, Developing and Implementing Next Generation Training

Centre for Advanced Training Systems
Learn About the Centre

Learn About the Centre

The Centre for Advanced Training Systems brings together researchers, educators and technology experts to provide tailored end-to-end project management.

Learn About Specific Projects

Learn About Specific Projects

The Centre for Advanced Training Systems (ATS) activities are funded on a project-specific basis and focus on improving workplace training in three main areas: Defence, Health and Education.

Learn About the Team

Learn About the Team

Our focus is on working with organisations to develop, implement and evaluate new training approaches that take advantage of digital platforms, particularly digital simulation platforms.

Mailing list signup

Join our mailing list to receive information on Centre updates and to be involved in testing of new applications.

Centre for Advanced Training Systems

Funding: The Centre for Advanced Training Systems (ATS) is based at The University of Newcastle. ATS activities are made possible through project-specific funding, as outlined in the Projects pages.