Summary: Employers workstream

This workstream looked at an enhanced, future role for employers connected to the FE sector and learning technologies. It touched upon key issues around FE curricula, and better preparedness for learners as they enter the professional working environment.

Draft recommendations:

  1. Employers should play a more integrated role in the development and delivery of FE curricula. These employers should specify which digital skills they want. They should also use tech to connect with more FEIs and learners when giving demonstrations and talks. Identify to what extent technology can help get greater engagement of employers in the design and delivery of learning
  2. An innovation fund should support leading-edge apprenticeships, traineeships and internships that use a high degree of technology in their delivery
  3. Monetise Vocational Open Online Courses (VOOCs and VE MOOCs, Alphasat) with particular emphasis on their export potential
  4. Employers and FE providers should work together to scale up existing ‘best practice’ learning technology network-building

Your views:

  • Building on these proposals, what specific changes to the ideas for employers are needed to make the biggest difference to you?
  • Can you suggest any good mechanisms for achieving these recommendations?
  • Are there other issues relating to employers that should be considered?

Rate the employers workstream:

In your opinion, how useful are these draft recommendations on employers ( 5 = very, 1 = not at all).

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Rating: 3.3/5 (6 votes cast)
Employers, 3.3 out of 5 based on 6 ratings

4 thoughts on “Employers

  1. Ian Lynch

    We already have proof of concept for a method for recommendation 3. It has been the subject of 3 EU Transfer of innovation projects and currently related to two more and a Key Activities project on the subject of MOOCs. These have involved partnerships with NL, BG, CZ, DE, ES, RO, Si, PL, Pt. Using existing technologies we can lower the cost of delivering qualifications which on significant scale can finance the development of OERs whether in MOOCs or in non-linear evidence based systems.

    Most employers are SMEs and they do not have the resources to commit personnel to curriculum development yet small businesses are probably the closest to technological innovation and development. There is a real danger that any input will be from large corporates who can afford to make the input. In order to get balanced input grants to businesses with fewer than 10 employees should be available to participate.

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  2. Crispin Weston

    Agree with the desirability of allowing employers more influence over curriculum development. This could best be achieved through the use of data standards to encode representations of capability (aka competencies) and the use of such capability representations, expressions and attributions within learning management software. Again, this is something that the ed-tech industry would work out, if it were incentivised to do so.

    But, to repeat an earlier comment, you should retain a clear division between the development of curricula and the development of technology-related pedagogy. Why should you fund employer-driven courses “that use a high degree of technology in their delivery”? Develop curricula to reflect employer requirements. Use ed tech if, and only if, it WORKS as a means of developing those curricula. They are two completely different things.

    Of course, digital skills might well be a curriculum requirement – which is why we need a clear differentiation between ed-tech on the one hand and computing/digital skills on the other.

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  3. David Phillips

    Pearson participated in FELTAG’s workstream and fully supports its recommendations for employers, the FE sector and providers to explore more fully how they may collectively prepare FE learners for their chosen professional pathway or progression into Higher Education through the enhanced use of learning technologies.

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  4. Helen Milner

    Consider how SMEs can build the digital capability of their staff. BIS as part of its digital capability enhancement programme for SMEs, could work with Tinder Foundation to offer its free entry-level online digital skills course to staff working in SMEs.

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