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Technology for Employability

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The role of UK higher education (HE), further education (FE) and skills sectors in developing student employability is clear. Technology can be an enabler to the development and communication of employability skills, but are organisations and employers making best use of it?

This presentation aims to share and discuss the emerging themes and ideas being generated through our student employability project, which explores how technology can best support students to develop and communicate the skills that are needed for the workplace.

The presentation informs participants of what has been learnt so far and engage them in discussions. We will:

Share emergent themes including issues and opportunities from the study
Share, discuss and build on ideas for what organisations, programme teams and we can do to enhance student employability and the use of technology.

Presenters:
Lisa Gray, senior co-design manager, Jisc
Peter Chatterton, independent consultant, higher education
Geoff Rebbeck, independent consultant, further education and skills

Who will find this useful?

The presentation will be of interest to anyone across HE, FE and skills with an interest in how students develop and communicate employability skills, primarily:

Senior managers with responsibility for employer responsiveness and employer engagement
Academic/teaching staff with an interest in employability
Technology-enhanced learning and academic enhancement roles
Employability leads
Staff with responsibility for personal development planning (PDP)
Careers staff.

Published in: Education
  • Unfortunately I missed the webinar, however the presentation is directly relevant to an Erasmus+ project I am involved with (WEA CYMRU). The EDGE project (Enhancing the Delivery of Guidance and Employability) investigates Best Practice in Delivering Employability across the Partner Organisations - Limerick City Adult Education College (AES VTOS) are the lead partners with ourselves and Insignare, Portugal, DafniKek, Greece & VHS Denkwerkstatt, Austria. The project will pilot the use of Open Badging and E-portfolios as CPD amongst staff in the respective partner Adult Education organisations. The project first meeting was held in Felin Heli, North Wales last week.
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Technology for Employability

  1. 1. Lisa Gray, Peter Chatterton and Geoff Rebbeck 29/04/2015 Technology for employability webinar
  2. 2. Technology for employability Geoff Rebbeck Independent consultant Blog: http://employabilityproject.jiscinvolve.org Twitter: #jiscemployability Lisa Gray Jisc Technology for employability This webinar will share emerging themes, issues and opportunities arising from a Jisc study exploring how technology can best support students to develop and communicate the skills needed for the workplace. It will also provide opportunities for participants to engage with and discuss emerging ideas for what institutions, programme teams and Jisc can do to enhance student employability and use of technology. Peter Chatterton Independent consultant
  3. 3. Overview »Background and context »Examples of practice »Five emerging themes – current practices »Three thematic ideas for institutions to enhance practices »Options for Jisc to consider to support the sector »Questions, comments and contributions Technology for employability
  4. 4. Why is this important? »Employability › Increasing importance in policy and strategy – evidence of an ‘employability gap’ › Means to economic independence and active citizenship. › Qualifications not an end to themselves »Technology › Evidence that technology can be an enabler…. – But it’s not clear how institutions are using technology most effectively to support learners › Digital savvy graduates are essential for shaping tomorrows entrepreneurial activities – But digital literacies aren’t well articulated in relation to employability skills Technology for employability
  5. 5. Jisc “Technology for Employability” study »December 2014 - study funded »February - open invitation for examples of practice »April 29th – webinar to share emerging themes and findings »May – study completes › Case studies › Analysis of the technology and employability landscape › Issues, challenges, gaps › Recommendations for institutions and Jisc › Good practice guidance »June – next steps identified Technology for employability
  6. 6. Effective practice examples Table 6 Case studies - HE Institution Subject University of Greenwich Greenwich Connect: a joined up approach to employability in a digital world University of Northampton Student employability development through social innovation and enterprise Glasgow Caledonian University Problem-solving real business issues using wikis Birmingham City University A range of creative approaches to developing student employability Keele University ILM accredited e-portfolio-based employability award University of Edinburgh Student-led e-portfolio-based assessments for evidencing graduate attributes University of Birmingham Online employability skills pathway of the Personal Skills Award University of London Employability skills MOOC Staffordshire University Staffordshire Graduate Employability project Bath Spa University International virtual internship programme Oregon State University collaboration Global student collaborative venture to compete in international student racing Technology for employability
  7. 7. Effective practice examples Table Case studies – FE and skills Institution Subject The Mindset Joint venture between Reed employment and 13 colleges – in campus branches S&BAutos Supporting motor vehicle apprenticeships through Moodle and virtual reality Job Centre Plus Using technology to support those out of work Welsh Baccalaureate Digital literacies embedded into the qualification MyWorksearch An online employability service supporting learners on an ongoing journey South Devon College Using an online employability course SouthWest College, NI Using technology to support partnership projects between students and industry Portland College Project using video, accessed by QR codes to support learners with disabilities ReadingCollege A college-wide move away from theVLE to learner-centred approaches City of Glasgow College An e-portfolio for stonemasons to best record their experiences in the workplace Technology for employability
  8. 8. Examples Further education and skills InnoTech, South West College, Cookstown, NI Technology for employability
  9. 9. Examples Keele Greenwich virtual law clinic Technology for employability Higher education Examples
  10. 10. Title of presentation 00/00/2013 10
  11. 11. Technology for employability Five emerging themes – current practices Google Doc: http://bit.ly/1blC97E Either: Add comments/questions/contributions to the text-chat or Add comments/contributions to the Google Doc
  12. 12. Technology for employability THEME 1 Institutions are on various points of the continuum towards student employability “maturity” » Different visions of “maturity” and variation in approaches to developing employability skills, capabilities and attributes » Authentic experiences can develop skills, but depend on: » the degree of “authenticity” » the degree to which students learn/reflect on them » the degree to which students articulate them » Many creative uses of technology, but embedding remains elusive to many institutions » Embedding employability/ attributes into curricula may be “ideal”, but there are challenges Five emerging themes – current practices
  13. 13. Technology for employability Programme teams are using technology to support student employability in five key ways providing significant benefits to students, employers and institutions » Technology-enhanced authentic and simulated learning experiences » Digital communications and engagement with employers including development of digital identity » Technology-enhanced lifelong learning and employability » Technology-enhanced employability skills development » Employer-focused digital literacy development THEME 2 http://bit.ly/1GaYdKx Five emerging themes – current practices
  14. 14. Technology for employability Technology is under exploited for employability » Variation in practices and understanding of potential of technologies- particularly with e-portfolios and social media. » Institutions could do a lot more to unleash student creativity in using digital networks/media to engage with employers, alumni and other stakeholders » Digital literacies are not well articulated in relation to employability skills » Employers and HE/FE generally have low aspirations in relation to “digital entrepreneurialism” » Growing band of knowledge in terms of what technology infrastructure is required for "connected curricula". THEME 3 Five emerging themes – current practices
  15. 15. Technology for employability Technology is under exploited for employability THEME 3 Programme teams are using technology to support student employability in five key ways providing significant benefits to students, employers and institutions THEME 2 THEME 1 Institutions are on various points of the continuum towards student employability “maturity” Google Doc: http://bit.ly/1blC97E Questions, comments and contributions on current practices?
  16. 16. Technology for employability Insufficient engagement and partnership working with employers » Core employability skills, capabilities and attributes are continually evolving » Unclear the degree to which employers (large and small) are involved in defining and developing employability skills » Not much evidence of institutions evaluating impact of employability policies/initiatives with employers » Not always easy to identify “truly” authentic learning experiences with employers for ALL students. » HE and FE need to find ways of improved working with a broader range of employers e.g. SMEs. » Need to raise aspirations for “digital entrepreneurialism” with employers. THEME 4 Five emerging themes – current practices
  17. 17. Technology for employability Variability in resources to support institutions in using technology for employability » Lack of awareness of e-portfolio resources and their value to institutions. » Insufficient emphasis in sector resources on “making the case” for using technology. » Guidance on digital literacies could be better contextualized and articulated in relation to employability skills. » Minimal resources relating to digital entrepreneurialism. » Insufficient guidance on effective use of social media to support employability. » Potential for greater adoption of multimedia communications approaches. » Resources on their own are insufficient – institutions need to be supported in using them effectively. THEME 5 Five emerging themes – current practices
  18. 18. Technology for employability Google Doc: http://bit.ly/1blC97E Questions, comments and contributions on current practices? THEME 4 THEME 5 Insufficient engagement and partnership working with employers Variability in resources to support institutions in using technology for employability
  19. 19. Technology for employability "Maturity" is probably best developed through "connected curricula" - embedding employability in curriculum and assessment combined with authentic experiential learning and employer engagement and underpinned by technology. » Some excellent examples of "connected curricula" where employability embedded into curricula and assessment » "Connected curricula" inextricably linked to assessment for learning approaches and authentic assessment » Curricula and assessment must incorporate student articulation of their experiential learning and employability skills » "Connected curricula" map well to the QAA "Flexible Curricula" framework ** » "Connected curricula" requires a learner- centred connected technology infrastructure IDEA 1 ** http://www.enhancementthemes.ac.uk/toolkits/flexible-curriculum Three thematic ideas for institutions to enhance practices
  20. 20. Technology for employability “Lifelong employability in a digital world” needs to be a core student capability – with students encouraged to take ownership early on » HE and FE need to prepare students for taking ownership of identifying and developing their employability skills and capabilities - using technology. » “Lifelong employability” is a key employability capability in its own right. » Lifelong employability aligns with lifelong learning, self-review, self-management and learning directions concepts. » Self-directed personal and professional learning (planning, reflection, managing, recording, review) can be effectively supported by e- portfolios. » (Digital) feedback and engagement with a variety of stakeholders including employers to help develop learner self-regulatory skills can be facilitated by technology. IDEA 2 Three thematic ideas for institutions to enhance practices
  21. 21. Technology for employability Institutions can better prepare for supporting student employability through technology in five key ways » Embedding and aligning technology for employability into polices, plans and resources » Developing staff digital literacies for employability – for themselves and their students. » Technology tools, resources, infrastructure and support for employability and student- centred flexible curricula » Improving communication and collaborations to drive change in technology for employability » Quality assuring and continuous improvement through employability data monitoring, analytics and review IDEA 3 Three thematic ideas for institutions to enhance practices
  22. 22. Technology for employability IDEA 3 IDEA 2 IDEA 1 Google Doc: http://bit.ly/1blC97E Questions, comments and contributions on the three thematic ideas for institutions to enhance practices "Maturity" is probably best developed through "connected curricula" - embedding employability in curriculum and assessment combined with authentic experiential learning and employer engagement and underpinned by technology. “Lifelong employability in a digital world” needs to be a core student capability – with students encouraged to take ownership early on Institutions can better prepare for supporting student employability through technology in five key ways
  23. 23. Technology for employability Jisc can potentially support institutions in six key ways » Benchmarking and effective practice toolkits. » Easily accessible, usable and navigable resources. » Facilitating an institution-led communications and engagement plan. » Online spaces to support creative collaborations between institutions, students, alumni, employers and professional & sector bodies. » Support services to institutions » Staff-student-employer partnerships OPTIONS Options for Jisc to consider to support the sector
  24. 24. Also on the horizon…. »Higher Education Academy › Embedding employability strategic enhancement programme › 37 Higher Education institutions › Using the HEA employability framework - https://www.heacademy.ac.uk/ node/6797 › Completing end of July 2015 Technology for employability »Joint AGCAS / CRA seminar › ‘Presenting yourself for the 21st Century’ › Birmingham City University, Monday 8th June › Register at: http://tinyurl.com/k9jxncr
  25. 25. Related Jisc activity » e-Portfolios – guidance on what they, how you can use them and successful implementation (updated guide currently in development) › www.jisc.ac.uk/eportfolio » Students as Agents of Change › www.jisc.ac.uk/rd/projects/change-agents- network » Digital Literacies › www.jisc.ac.uk/guides/developing-digital- literacies » Assessment and employability › http://bit.ly/jisc-assess » Curriculum Design › http://bit.ly/jisccdd » Lifelong Learning and Workforce Development › http://repository.jisc.ac.uk/5993/ Where to find out more Technology for employability
  26. 26. Find out more »Lisa Gray lisa.gray@jisc.ac.uk »Peter Chatterton peter.chatterton@daedalus-e- world.com »Geoff Rebbeck grebbeck@me.com »Googledocs: http://bit.ly/1blC97E and http://bit.ly/1GaYdKx »Project page: jisc.ac.uk/rd/projects/developing- student-employability »Join the conversation on the blog: employabilityproject.jiscinvolve.org/ and on twitter #jiscemployability Technology for employability

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