Training wastewater treatment facility operators is a crucial function because of their responsibility for keeping treatment plants operational and running efficiently. On-the-job training carries the risk of upsetting plant operations and jeopardizing effluent quality, because operators being trained will make mistakes during the learning process. One training method that can reduce this risk is to train new operators on a computer simulator. OPTRAIN, developed for the State of Massachusetts, and now in use at other locations, is one such tool that has been used successfully in training sessions that bridge the gap between textbook teaching methods and apprenticeship learning. The purpose of this presentation is to describe the simulator and to show how it has helped train operators successfully.

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