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Building digital skills in the Further Education Sector

Derrick, J; Laurillard, D; Doel, M; (2016) Building digital skills in the Further Education Sector. (Future of skills and lifelong learning , pp. pp. 1-27 ). Foresight, Government Office for Science: London, UK. Green open access

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Abstract

This paper highlights the importance of supporting FE teachers to help them improve the teaching and learning of digital skills, given the increasing demand for digital skills across the UK workforce. Digital skills are increasingly being considered as a crucial complement to essential English and maths skills. This applies to all learners, not just those in technical education. The traditional view of literacy as the ability to read and write has expanded to encompass understanding digital tools and information for the whole workforce. However, a high proportion of adults in the UK lack the digital skills to engage fully as citizens, and England and Northern Ireland is below the OECD average for digital skills related to work. Blended learning methods to upskill teachers and assist them to update their teaching approach could enable the UK to improve its relative position internationally. The sector is increasing the use of learning technology to update teaching methods through funded projects, but the work remains uncoordinated and inefficient. It will be important for teachers to use technology for scalable models, shared innovations and collaborative learning among professionals if they are to keep pace with innovation in teaching in an affordable and sustainable way. Models for change are: • Scaling up learners’ use of digital methods across the curriculum More elements of vocational courses could benefit from technology-enhanced learning activities and formative assessments, using automated and peer-reviewed methods. Digital methods would enable the sector to complement the future move to local autonomy with sector-wide collaborative provision of online courses that could be sourced centrally and tutored locally, thereby offering a wider range of provision at the local level. • Employer-provider collaboration projects on workplace digital skills There are proven models in the sector for building collaborative partnerships between employers and training providers. The new national colleges could greatly extend their value if they were to follow these models of utilising digital resources for learning and use online learning to offer central expertise plus local tutoring to other regions. • Teacher support via peer collaboration to accelerate innovation If the expectations of teachers explicitly include digital education skills for teaching both specific and generic digital skills, peer collaboration would help teachers to meet the accelerated innovation requirements being demanded of them. • Strategic leadership in the sector for rapid digital progress Open online courses show that it is feasible to develop the critical mass of engaged and collaborative teaching innovators who will sustain the FE teaching workforce. Such a learning community could adapt to changes in demand and the continual innovation in learning technology. Such courses could also be offered to support leaders and governors in a strategic approach to optimise digital technologies for teaching and learning. The main policy consideration is to invest in the use of digital learning innovations by teaching professionals to develop, test, peer review, publish and share their effective practices. This will build a self-sustaining learning system at the heart of the future development of the sector. Actions in support of this are to: • Enable pedagogic innovation; • Develop digital skills across the curriculum; • Update assessment methods to more digital forms; • Support teachers in keeping their digital skills capability updated; • Support leaders and governors in developing digital innovation; • Develop a policy for digital skills in the teaching and graduate workforce.

Type: Report
Title: Building digital skills in the Further Education Sector
Open access status: An open access version is available from UCL Discovery
Publisher version: https://www.gov.uk/government/publications/skills-...
Language: English
Additional information: © Crown copyright 2017. This publication is licensed under the terms of the Open Government Licence v3.0 except where otherwise stated. To view this licence, visit nationalarchives.gov.uk/doc/open-government licence/version/3 or write to the Information Policy Team, The National Archives, Kew, London TW9 4DU, or email: psi@nationalarchives.gsi.gov.uk. Where we have identified any third party copyright information you will need to obtain permission from the copyrightholders concerned.
Keywords: further education, digital skills, professional development, capacity-building
UCL classification: UCL
UCL > Provost and Vice Provost Offices
UCL > Provost and Vice Provost Offices > School of Education
UCL > Provost and Vice Provost Offices > School of Education > UCL Institute of Education
UCL > Provost and Vice Provost Offices > School of Education > UCL Institute of Education > IOE - Culture, Communication and Media
UCL > Provost and Vice Provost Offices > School of Education > UCL Institute of Education > IOE - Education, Practice and Society
URI: https://discovery.ucl.ac.uk/id/eprint/10069586
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