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Bridging the Gap. . The skills gap between FE and HE, and what can be done to reduce it. Chris Fuller, Learn with US Coordinator and Lecturer 24 June 2011. Bridging the gap. Introduction and background

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Bridging the gap l.jpg

Bridging the Gap.

The skills gap between FE and HE, and what can be done to reduce it

Chris Fuller, Learn with US Coordinator and Lecturer

24 June 2011


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Bridging the gap

  • Introduction and background

  • Highlight specific issues regarding the transition from FE to HE, in particular at Russell Group institutions

  • Examine the Extended Project Qualification (EPQ) as a method of overcoming some of these issues

  • Introduce the University of Southampton’s Learn with US (LwUS) programme and its role in supporting skills development and the EPQ


Our backgrounds l.jpg

Our backgrounds

MRes 2008-2010

PhD candidate 2010 -

A-level

UG/PG

Chris Fuller

PGCE Secondary

A-level teaching experience 2001 – 2008

Evening class teaching

2003 – 2011

University Outreach

2008 –

UG lecturing 2011 -

Helen Spurling

PhD

UG and PG teaching experience 2002 –

Continuing Education teaching

2005 –

University Outreach

2009 –

Transition

Academic research and

Outreach responsibility


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Bridging the gap

  • Introduction and background

  • Highlight specific issues regarding the transition from FE to HE, in particular at Russell Group institutions


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Staff ratings: required skills on arrival (1)

Academic staff drawn for across all disciplines.

Source: Fiona Black and Stephanie Lee, Universities of Glasgow and Manchester, Mission Ambition RG Conference, May 2009


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Staff ratings: required skills on arrival (2)

Source: Fiona Black and Stephanie Lee, Universities of Glasgow and Manchester, Mission Ambition RG Conference, May 2009


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Mismatch in expectations

  • Students

  • Amount of study time required

  • Breadth of study expected

  • Need to take responsibility for their own learning

  • Staff

  • Basic skills such as grammar and numeracy

  • Critical thinking

  • Ability to demonstrate independent understanding

Source: University of Southampton Transition to Living and Learning Conference, 7 June 2010


Factors pulling the two sectors l.jpg

Content

Results

Retention

Contact hours

Mixed ability

Employers

Assessment

Factors pulling the two sectors

Further Education

Higher Education

Guided Learning

Independent Learning

Sources: University of Southampton Transition to Living and Learning Project, Learn with US


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Twenty-first century graduates

The ideal graduate is "intellectually flexible", a critical thinker and a team player; someone who could see their discipline in a wider context; someone who is, above all, employable.

intellectually flexible

critical thinker

team player

see their discipline in a wider context

Source: University of Aberdeen, Curriculum Reform Consultation, 2010


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Multi-disciplinary study=employability

Top 10

The

in demand global graduate jobs of 2010

did not exist

in 2007.

US Department of Labor


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The globalization of Higher Education

Sweden - 2

Denmark - 2

Ireland - 2

UK - 18

China - 2

Canada - 4

France - 2

Netherlands - 4

Switzerland - 4

South Korea - 2

USA - 32

Germany - 4

Japan - 6

Belgium - 1

Taiwan - 1

Hong Kong - 3

Singapore - 2

Australia - 8

New Zealand - 1

Source: QS World Rankings 2009 - 10


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Percentage of students in full time graduate employment within six months of leaving university.

Score awarded by students for quality of education, facilities, support and social life.

Source: Sunday Times League Table, 2010


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Content

Results

Retention

Contact hours

Mixed ability

Employers

Assessment

Higher fees?

Factors pulling the two sectors

Further Education

Higher Education

Guided Learning

Independent Learning

Transition

Sources: University of Southampton Transition to Living and Learning Project, Learn with US


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Bridging the gap

  • Introduction and background

  • Highlight specific issues regarding the transition from FE to HE, in particular at Russell Group institutions

  • Examine the Extended Project Qualification (EPQ) as a method of overcoming some of these issues


Why the extended project qualification l.jpg

Why the Extended Project Qualification?

  • Skills and qualities required in Higher Education

  • Writing essays/reports

  • Thinking critically

  • Problem solving

  • Time management and independent working

  • Contributing to a discussion

  • IT skills

  • Numeracy

  • Team work

  • Interpreting graphs and tables

  • Presenting

  • Intellectual flexibility

  • Seeing subject in a wider context

Source: AQA Level 3 Extended Project Qualification Specifications


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Why the Extended Project Qualification?

  • Skills and qualities required in Higher Education

  • Writing essays/reports

  • Thinking critically

  • Problem solving

  • Time management and independent working

  • Contributing to a discussion

  • IT skills

  • Numeracy

  • Team work

  • Interpreting graphs and tables

  • Presenting

  • Intellectual flexibility

  • Seeing subject in a wider context

‘take responsibility either for an individual task or for a defined task within a group project’

[120 hours, of which 30 should be taught, the rest are independent research and supervision]

Source: AQA Level 3 Extended Project Qualification Specifications


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Why the Extended Project Qualification?

  • Skills and qualities required in Higher Education

  • Writing essays/reports

  • Thinking critically

  • Problem solving

  • Time management and independent working

  • Contributing to a discussion

  • IT skills

  • Numeracy

  • Team work

  • Interpreting graphs and tables

  • Presenting

  • Intellectual flexibility

  • Seeing subject in a wider context

‘obtain, critically select and use select information

from a range of sources’

Source: AQA Level 3 Extended Project Qualification Specifications


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Why the Extended Project Qualification?

  • Skills and qualities required in Higher Education

  • Writing essays/reports

  • Thinking critically

  • Problem solving

  • Time management and independent working

  • Contributing to a discussion

  • IT skills

  • Numeracy

  • Team work

  • Interpreting graphs and tables

  • Presenting

  • Intellectual flexibility

  • Seeing subject in a wider context

‘develop and apply decision-making and, where appropriate, problem-solving skills’

Source: AQA Level 3 Extended Project Qualification Specifications


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Why the Extended Project Qualification?

  • Skills and qualities required in Higher Education

  • Writing essays/reports

  • Thinking critically

  • Problem solving

  • Time management and independent working

  • Contributing to a discussion

  • IT skills

  • Numeracy

  • Team work

  • Interpreting graphs and tables

  • Presenting

  • Intellectual flexibility

  • Seeing subject in a wider context

‘analyse data, apply it relevantly and demonstrate understanding of any appropriate linkages, connections and complexities of the topic’

Source: AQA Level 3 Extended Project Qualification Specifications


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Why the Extended Project Qualification?

  • Skills and qualities required in Higher Education

  • Writing essays/reports

  • Thinking critically

  • Problem solving

  • Time management and independent working

  • Contributing to a discussion

  • IT skills

  • Numeracy

  • Team work

  • Interpreting graphs and tables

  • Presenting

  • Intellectual flexibility

  • Seeing subject in a wider context

‘The taught element is likely to include ICT skills that will enhance the production of the report and/or the development of the project covering research, analysis and execution’

Source: AQA Level 3 Extended Project Qualification Specifications


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Why the Extended Project Qualification?

  • Skills and qualities required in Higher Education

  • Writing essays/reports

  • Thinking critically

  • Problem solving

  • Time management and independent working

  • Contributing to a discussion

  • IT skills

  • Numeracy

  • Team work

  • Interpreting graphs and tables

  • Presenting

  • Intellectual flexibility

  • Seeing subject in a wider context

‘On completion the learners must give a presentation which should be for a non-specialist audience using media appropriate to the type of project. […] The presentation

must include a live question and answer session overseen by the supervisor’

Source: AQA Level 3 Extended Project Qualification Specifications


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Why the Extended Project Qualification?

  • Skills and qualities required in Higher Education

  • Writing essays/reports

  • Thinking critically

  • Problem solving

  • Time management and independent working

  • Contributing to a discussion

  • IT skills

  • Numeracy

  • Team work

  • Interpreting graphs and tables

  • Presenting

  • Intellectual flexibility

  • Seeing subject in a wider context

‘a written report of between 1000 and 5000 words. The exact length of each written report will depend on the nature of the project, the subject area or topic chosen and the other evidence provided. […] It should use appropriate terminology, style and form of writing.’

Source: AQA Level 3 Extended Project Qualification Specifications


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Why the Extended Project Qualification?

  • Skills and qualities required in Higher Education

  • Writing essays/reports

  • Thinking critically

  • Problem solving

  • Time management and independent working

  • Contributing to a discussion

  • IT skills

  • Numeracy

  • Team work

  • Interpreting graphs and tables

  • Presenting

  • Intellectual flexibility

  • Seeing subject in a wider context

Source: AQA Level 3 Extended Project Qualification Specifications


Factors pulling the two sectors26 l.jpg

Content

Results

Retention

Contact hours

Mixed ability

Employers

Assessment

Higher fees?

Factors pulling the two sectors

Further Education

Higher Education

Not directly linked to offers

Guided Learning

Independent Learning

Experience of independence

Transition

Self-selecting?

Small numbers?

More about skills development

Sources: University of Southampton Transition to Living and Learning Project, Learn with US


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Challenges in implementing the EPQ

  • Encouraging students to undertake the EPQ when it does not necessarily form part of a university offer


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We certainly welcome students who have undertaken the EPQ, as it provides an excellent introduction to the type of work they will be expected to do at university. It encourages development in all the skills required of our undergraduates, such as research, analysis, independent work and thought, and the ability to communicate ideas.

Whilst we do not currently include the Extended Project in our offers, we recommend that students discuss their project in their personal statement and illustrate the ways it has helped to build on both their academic skills and intellectual curiosity.

University of Southampton

Source: AQA <http://www.aqa.org.uk/qualifications/projects/extended-project-epq.php> [accessed 2 February 2011]


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Qualifications taken in addition to your main exams, such as the Extended Project, will improve your application by enabling you to develop study skills that will be useful in higher education. Although we do not usually make offers based on such qualifications, we encourage applicants to take them and to note them on their application form.

University of Birmingham

The University is supportive of the requirement to undertake an Extended Project … It is expected that some admissions tutors may make two alternative offers to those offering this qualification, one of which involves success in the Extended Project (e.g. either AAA at A-level or AAB at A-level plus Extended Project).

University of Bristol

Source: AQA <http://www.aqa.org.uk/qualifications/projects/extended-project-epq.php> [accessed 2 February 2011]


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We welcome the introduction of the Extended Project and would encourage you to undertake one as it will help you develop independent study and research skills and ease the transition from school/ college to higher education. Completion of an Extended Project will not, however, be a requirement of any offer made.

University of Cambridge

Source: AQA <http://www.aqa.org.uk/qualifications/projects/extended-project-epq.php> [accessed 2 February 2011]


Slide31 l.jpg

[We] encourage students to complete an EPQ, where possible, as we value the development of skills in independent study and research, which an EPQ can offer. … an EPQ in the subject that is related to the course or discipline that you wish to progress into … may be taken into account by admissions tutorswhen making decisions between applicants of equal academic standing.

University of Sheffield

Source: AQA <http://www.aqa.org.uk/qualifications/projects/extended-project-epq.php> [accessed 2 February 2011]


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Russell Group applications per places

15%

08-09

11%

09-10

Source: Dr Wendy Piatt, RG Director General, Mission Ambition Conference, May 2009


A level exam performance a a ratio l.jpg

27.5%

35.3%

A-level exam performance A / A* ratio

Independent sector

State sector

Source: UCAS results summary 2009 - 2010


Degree performance 1 2 1 ratio l.jpg

68%

64%

Degree performance 1 / 2:1 ratio

Independent sector

State sector

Source: London School of Economics’ Centre for Economic Performance, 2010


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Degree performance 1 / 2:1 ratio

‘In the state sector there's more independent learning. Students are more used to working things out on their own rather than having a teacher giving them individual attention. When they get to university, where the classes are much larger than at school, they're better equipped to cope than those from private schools.’

Richard Murphy, Research Economist, LSE, Friday 23 July, 2010

<http://www.guardian.co.uk/education/2010/jul/23/state-school-pupils-better-university>

[accessed 16 September 2010].


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Challenges in implementing the EPQ

  • Encouraging students to undertake the EPQ when it does not necessarily form part of a university offer

  • Training staff to supervise students undertaking EPQs

  • Writing and delivering skills sessions (30 taught hours)

  • Access to resources and materials


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Bridging the gap

  • Introduction and background

  • Highlight specific issues regarding the transition from FE to HE, in particular at Russell Group institutions

  • Examine the Extended Project Qualification (EPQ) as a method of overcoming some of these issues

  • Introduce the University of Southampton’s Learn with US (LwUS) programme and its role in supporting skills development and the EPQ


Slide38 l.jpg

www.learnwithus.southampton.ac.uk


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How does Learn with US work?

Outreach Lectures and Seminars

Multidisciplinary research-based content, hosted on campus or delivered out at sixth forms.

Supported by Academic Guides

Extended Project Qualification Support

Academic workshops, research visits to the Hartley Library (up to 50 students per visit) and online resources.

Research Based Learning Project

Whole day group project working with primary materials, hosted on campus or out at school.


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Outreach Lectures and Seminars


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How does Learn with US work?

Outreach Lectures and Seminars

Multidisciplinary research-based content, hosted on campus or delivered out at sixth forms.

Supported by Academic Guides

Extended Project Qualification Support

Academic workshops, research visits to the Hartley Library (up to 50 students per visit) and online resources.


Extended project support l.jpg

Extended Project Support

  • Learn, discover, develop & create.

  • 83 pages covering 23 A-level subjects

  • Links to over 700 reliable websites, databases and documents for research provided by our academic liaison librarians

  • Advice on how to conduct multidisciplinary research

  • Freely available PDF on Learn with US website


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Extended Project Support

  • Group visits to Hartley Library (up to 50 students)*

  • Individual or small group independent visits

* Depends upon time of year. Group visits include a library induction lecture and guest log-ins to access online journals


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Extended Project Support

All freely available in PDF format from website.


How does learn with us work45 l.jpg

How does Learn with US work?

Outreach Lectures and Seminars

Multidisciplinary research-based content, hosted on campus or delivered out at sixth forms.

Supported by Academic Guides

Extended Project Qualification Support

Academic workshops, research visits to the Hartley Library (up to 50 students per visit) and online resources.

Research Based Learning Project

Whole day group project working with primary materials, hosted on campus or out at school.


Research based learning project l.jpg

Research Based Learning Project

9:30 – 10:30 Lecture to provide background e.g. Our Final Frontier? The use and abuse of space through the 20th century

10:45 – 11:15 Set up task

Brief recap on research skills, referencing, need to balance argument and giving presentations.

11:15 – 15:00 Group research

Students split into groups and given specific question to research and answer e.g. Make the case for/against the continued militarisation of space. Groups provided with wide range of primary and secondary materials.

15:00 – 15:45 Presentation

Groups must present their cases. Presentations are marked and formal feedback is provided.


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Research Based Learning Project

Encourages intellectual flexibility and multi-disciplinary approach. Uses skills developed by Extended Project.

Law

International law and human rights

Physics, Chemistry, Computer Science

Assessment of the effectiveness of space weaponry

Politics

Role of the UN, the input of citizens in space policy

Should the militarisation of space continue?

Philosophy, Theology

Ethical issues of arming the heavens

Engineering Sciences

Development of space vehicles

History

Cold War and the space race, arms races and their consequences

Mathematics, Astrophysics

The implications of space debris for space traffic

English Literature, Film

Representation of space and weapons in popular culture, from Jules Verne to George Lucas

Economics

Cost implications, budget analysis of expenditure


How does learn with us work48 l.jpg

How does Learn with US work?

Outreach Lectures and Seminars

Multidisciplinary research-based content, hosted on campus or delivered out at sixth forms.

Supported by Academic Guides

Extended Project Qualification Support

Academic workshops, research visits to the Hartley Library (up to 50 students per visit) and online resources.

Research Based Learning Project

Whole day group project working with primary materials, hosted on campus or out at school.


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Planned future developments

  • More staff INSET and training

  • Research skills short course/module

  • Podcasts and free lesson plans

  • Using PhD students to extend programme


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?

Chris Fuller

[email protected]

www.learnwithus.southampton.ac.uk


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