FE Reimagined (eBook)


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FE Reimagined (eBook)

  1. 1. © 2014 Microsoft, Gazelle Group and Intel. All rights reserved. Authors: Ha Cole, Enterprise Strategist at Microsoft UK and Fintan Donohue, CEO of Gazelle Group Key contributors: Dave Coplin, Chris McLean, Mike Morris and Linda Chandler Sponsored by Microsoft, Gazelle Group and Intel May 2014 Further Education Reimagined Preparing for the Future Workforce.
  2. 2. 2 Further Education Reimagined Preparing for the Future Workforce Contents Introduction 3 The Rapidly Changing World 4 The Changing World of Work 4 The Changing World of Education 5 The Intense Competition 7 New Thinking – New Strategy 8 Thinking Shift 1 – Actively Prepare for the New Worlds of Employment (and Self-Employment) 9 Thinking Shift 2 – Invest in Technology to Deliver Student Success and Employment 12 Thinking Shift 3 – Increase Transparency and Accountability 15 Summary and Call for Actions 16 Note A – Key Technologies for Further Education Reform 18 Note B – Microsoft, Intel Solutions and Certifications 21 Acknowledgments 23
  3. 3. 3 Introduction Technology is changing the way we live, work and play. It is continuing to make certain forms of labour redundant whilst creating new jobs and markets at a pace that grows faster every year. Technology is enabling people to work and to learn at a time and a place of their choosing. Increasing numbers of people are working from communal hubs, business incubation centres and mobile offices. The next generation of workers will have new outlooks, values and ways of working, typified by their reliance on social networking technologies to connect, collaborate, learn and create. Technology is recognised by many organisations as the strategic enabler to remain competitive and to grow. In the midst of this technological and social revolution, the debate around post-compulsory education in the UK has been dominated by the relationship between education, employment and competitiveness in the global economy. The golden thread running through the debate is the importance attached to advancing vocational skills as tangible outputs of the education system in such a way that the learner also acquires the technical and functional skills that are key to economic competitiveness. The emergence of the University Technical Colleges1 , the work of the commission for adult vocational teaching and learning and an increased emphasis on skills in the Further Education sector are all important products of that debate. What if, however, the drivers for collective and individual success require significantly more than technological mastery and knowledge acquisition? What if the new worlds of work now require T-shaped individuals? Individuals, Gazelle2 would argue, for whom a vocational and technical vision for the sector does not deliver on its own. Gazelle believes that a vision for vocational training without depth reflects a reductionist view of the needs of employers. Employers and indeed the self-employed, increasingly need to demonstrate a broader portfolio of personal, professional and functional capabilities in order to engage effectively in a world of work that requires individuals to create value. Indeed, the Confederation of British Industry3 (CBI) and other stakeholders identify the combination of deep expertise in a chosen vocational field together with the wider capabilities of creativity, teamworking, entrepreneurship, enterprise and other personal and technical abilities as the hallmark of success for employees in the 21st century. This breadth in learning will not appear as a by-product of a vocational and knowledge acquisition-based educational system. It requires a pedagogy, a learning experience and an assessment structure that is just as rigorous and applied as the curriculum that it underpins. If all of the available education and training funding is attached solely to the mastery of vocational skills, then colleges will fail to deliver the balanced outcome that a competitive economy will increasingly require. This report makes the case for a radical rethink of how learning should be delivered. It asks questions about leadership and the capacity of our sector to reap the rewards for learners that technology can potentially deliver. It offers some thought and practice on how our colleges might begin to reshape their curriculum to accommodate a bigger vision for colleges in the 21st century, borrowing from and aligning with practices in the business world. Its purpose, as with earlier Gazelle thought publications, is to stimulate debate in order to strengthen the quality and relevance of colleges to society and to industry in the decade ahead. Fintan Donohue, CEO Gazelle. 1 http://www.utcolleges.org/ 2 http://www.gazellecolleges.com/ 3 http://www.cbi.org.uk/ © 2014 Microsoft, Gazelle Group and Intel. All rights reserved.
  4. 4. The work we do has changed dramatically in the last 20 years. Technology has automated many traditional manual, high routine jobs that have been the mainstay of college success and this trend will continue faster than ever before. Even information workers are no longer immune to automation. Indeed, 47% of job categories are open to automation in the next two decades. Only non-routine work will continue to provide jobs in the long term. The nature of the work we do has also changed, as described in Gazelle’s Enterprise Futures4 . Careers characterised by long-term, well-defined employment in a single organisation still exist, but their number is shrinking. Instead, jobs regularly change as organisations outsource to suitable locations (onshore and offshore) for optimal outcome. Technology has lowered the barrier for entry and enables entrepreneurs and small organisations (6 to 10 people) to trade locally, nationally and globally. These small organisations and entrepreneurs will continue to grow in number and specialism to form micro-experts in the macro-economy5 . In short, organisations will increasingly operate and collaborate within a global networked economy of differing sizes. We need to ask what we are doing in our colleges to take account of this changing employment landscape. The nature of the work we do has started to change as described by Coplin in Business Reimagined.6 Coplin argues that the source of organisational competitiveness is to enable people to be fully engaged, fully creative and productive. His answer involves: Empowering employees to work anywhere, anytime of their choosing. Enabling employees to leverage their collective knowledge by creating culture of transparency and collaboration. A management style that empowers employees to have shared ownership and accountability. We need to ask whether our colleges are adjusting their internal culture to create the competitiveness that Coplin refers to. Fundamental shifts have occurred before in the industrial age but this time the pace of change is significantly faster as technology makes it easier to try out new business models. Individuals with the right skills will capture a significant proportion of wealth whilst the remainder face shrinking opportunities with lower earnings. In this landscape, Coplin advocates that education should become more destination- oriented, focusing on where students will get employment or start companies as well as acquiring formal vocational skills. This involves a change of emphasis away from simple acquisition of qualifications to a more applied and commercially relevant real world approach. He argues that colleges need to equip students with long-lasting skills such as teamworking, digital fluency, and entrepreneurship as well as how to learn effectively as the foundation for their lifelong learning. College leaders, he suggests, need to create physical and technological environments that can support and deliver applied learning and competitive advantage. Coplin questions whether college leaders have the expertise, training and confidence to deliver technology change at the pace required. The Rapidly Changing World The Changing World of Work 47%of job categories in the next two decades are open to automation Source: “the Future of Employment” by Frey & Osborne 2013 Individuals with the right skills will capture a significant proportion of wealth whilst the remainder face shrinking opportunities with lower earnings. 4 “Enterprising Futures – Changing Landscape and New Possibilities for Further Education” by Gazelle in 2012 5 “Race Against The Machine: How the Digital Revolution is Accelerating Innovation, Driving Productivity, and Irreversibly Transforming Employment and the Economy”, by Erik Brynjolfsson and Andrew McAfee, Digital Frontier Press, 2011 6 “Business Reimagined: why work isn’t working and what you can do about it”, by Dave Coplin, Harriman House, 2013 4 Further Education Reimagined Preparing for the Future Workforce
  5. 5. 7 “Generation Y will reinvent outsourcing”, Gartner 2013 8 “Ten things everyone should know about students and digital learning”, National Speak Up 2013 http://www.slideshare.net/ProjectTomorrow/ten-things-about-digital-learning-and-students-j-evans-fetc-2014 The Changing World of Education Younger generations (Y and Z) have very different values and ways of working to preceding generations7 . They value change, variety, excitement and diversity, and they actively seek new challenges. They are impatient and thrive on instant gratification and feedback. They enjoy social networking and embrace people from different cultures and countries. They embrace virtual teamworking and multi-tasking. They value work-life balance and like technology to enable them to freely and seamlessly mix their private and work life. The above preferences are clearly expressed in a recent survey8 of students: They like to learn anywhere anytime, to be in control of their learning and to learn at their own pace. They like social-based learning using e.g. text, chat, networking sites. They like digitally rich content using e.g. video. They like games (in learning) to make it easier to understand difficult concepts. All the evidence across Gazelle colleges suggests that the expansion of cross-college enterprise competitions and a more applied approach to entrepreneurial learning methods deliver student motivation, student preference and improved retention. Coplin sees a parallel with the world of work, where technology can increase efficiency and cost saving in education but technology can also transform and disrupt. He argues that college leaders need to embrace both the efficiency and transformative nature of technology, blending with changes to pedagogy and curriculum to create a 21st century teaching and learning environment. The five key technologies most relevant to education are Cloud, Mobile, Social, Big Data and Gamification (games in learning) (more details in Note A - page 18). Each technology has significant value individually, but considered together, they have the ability to transform Further Education to meet the preferences of students and to deliver graduates who are ready for the new world of work as shown in Figure 1. Cloud Mobility Social Big Data Gamification Anywhere anytime & flip learning Instant feedback & insights Co-creation of content Personalised & adaptive learning Social-based learning Digitally rich & fun learning Figure 1 - The five key technologies and their potential to transform further education Cross-college enterprise competitions and a more applied approach to entrepreneurial learning methods deliver student motivation, student preference and improved retention. The Rapidly Changing World 5© 2014 Microsoft, Gazelle Group and Intel. All rights reserved.
  6. 6. The Changing World of Education continued College leaders need to ask themselves whether these five technologies are effectively located in their strategy and in their investment planning for growth and delivery. The Rapidly Changing World 6 Further Education Reimagined Preparing for the Future Workforce Given the preferences of the younger generations and the economic reality of declining college budgets, it is no longer sustainable to use technology just to enhance traditional methods and deliver “more of the same for less”. The transformative capability of technology enables colleges to enhance and replace traditional methods of learning delivery in ways that create real value for students. We can reduce the cost of traditional learning while building new services that can increase employment and increase the confidence of our learners. Figure 2 - An example of learning pathway program A scenario using the five key technologies: Jimmy has just started college and hopes to run his own company. As many of his peers, he enjoys using ‘apps’ and playing games. He is inspired by Dong Nguyen who creates the Flappy Bird game and earns tens of thousands of dollars a day. Having watched Dragon’s Den however, Jimmy is realistic and knows there is more to running a business than being a talented app developer. He is also open to running non-IT businesses. Given Jimmy’s aspiration and his GCSE achievements, his tutor uses the Learning Pathway programme (below) to work with Jimmy on alternative paths. They co-create a learning programme specific to Jimmy, which combines the theory of entrepreneurship with the practical experience of running a real life app development business. Jimmy’s learning is supplemented by games, virtual trainers9 and projects where real life experience does not provide sufficient depth. On a day to day basis, Jimmy’s learning is regularly validated with mini-exercises and he is awarded with badges. The exercises capture not only Jimmy’s final answers, but also how he arrives at the answers and how long he takes. This allows his tutor to determine the specific areas that require intervention. The information from these exercises also serves to auto-generate the next set of learning content, which are set at “just enough difficulty” to challenge Jimmy whilst encouraging him to the next mini-goal and badge. Coached by his tutor, Jimmy is adept at building his professional network from his personal network and vice versa. He uses social network sites to connect with like- minded peers, employers, entrepreneurs, locally and around the world. Just as Jimmy learns from his professional and personal network, the coaches in his college also work as a team of facilitators. They use technology to share their students’ aspirations and progress. They complement each other to further their students’ goals. 9 For example, Virtual Welder http://www.midkent.ac.uk/news/news-archive/virtual-trainer-to-inspire-young-welders Windows App Development 2014 2015 Enterprise and Entrepreneurship App Design and Development User Testing App Accessibility Navigation Design Security and Reliability Business Planning and Pitching Get Started Developing Windows Store Apps Intro to Visual Studio Express Financial Planning & Implementation
  7. 7. The Intense Competition In recent years, business has been intensely competitive, both nationally and globally. Local businesses now face competition from abroad as well as from national rivals. Competition also exists in education. Competition is intensified through providers employing Massively Online Open Courses (MOOC) and other technologies. As this evolves to become more effective the competitive threat will increase. Colleges need to embrace these changes and they need to combine to create their own MOOCs. Reducing cost of learning to communities has to be a prime objective for all of our colleges in the next decade. As education becomes subject to the same forces that drive business, such as learners and employers being recognised as customers for example, the parallel with the business world is that Further Education could shrink further in the face of present and future competition from other education sectors both domestically and globally. Government has made it clear that if colleges wish to continue to receive public funding, they must be able to demonstrate a clear and compelling contribution towards UK competiveness in the global economy. 7 The Rapidly Changing World If the rate of change on the outside exceeds the rate of change on the inside, the end is near Jack Welch © 2014 Microsoft, Gazelle Group and Intel. All rights reserved.
  8. 8. The process of change to reflect the new realities of funding and customer needs has begun in the sector e.g. increased focus on apprenticeships, entrepreneurship, online learning as well as the work by the Further Education Learning Technology Action Group (FELTAG)10 . This rapidly changing world requires a step-change in our thinking. We propose three integrated thinking shifts which encompass change in culture, organisation, policy, leadership and technology, as shown in Figure 3, for consideration and debate. New Thinking - New Strategy 8 Further Education Reimagined Preparing for the Future Workforce Figure 3 - The new strategy with three integrated thinking shifts 10 http://feltag.org.uk/wp-content/uploads/2012/01/FELTAG-REPORT-FINAL.pdf Actively prepare for the new world of employment Invest in technology to deliver student success and employment Increase transparency and accountability
  9. 9. Thinking Shift 1 – Actively Prepare for the New Worlds of Employment (and Self-Employment) The encouragement and advancement of a traditional, predictable model of learning we believe is at variance with the unpredictable nature of work and employment The new worlds of work as characterised in Figure 4 demand a flexibility in our curriculum and in our delivery methods that is currently missing in many of our colleges. We would suggest that the flexibility needed is not well-served by the traditional classroom-based education methods actively encouraged by current policy makers. The encouragement and advancement of a traditional, predictable model of learning we believe is at variance with the unpredictable nature of work and employment that generations will experience over the century. If we are to include a richer set of skills into the curriculum we have to create space, choice and variety. The current emphasis on GCSE Maths and English for many young people in colleges each year is laudable. However, when the time required is combined with funding reduction levels, the potential to deliver the T-shaped learning outcomes that industry require, is extremely difficult. Innovation and the ingenious deployment of technology offers colleges a solution and the opportunity to be true to their values in the face of these unprecedented challenges. Technology offers us the potential to deliver some of the skills and knowledge-based content through MOOCs and other routes. This is not about reducing student learning but rather is about enabling colleges to build new activity choice and applied learning into the space created by that investment in new technology. Move to a T-shaped Curriculum T-shaped people have two types of characteristics. The vertical part of the “T” is a depth of vocational skills required for specific work in specific industry. The horizontal part of the “T” is the long-lasting skills that enable individuals to adapt to work in the different work environments, whether working for large or small organisations, or as entrepreneurs. The curriculum needs to adapt and change in order to deliver the T-shaped students the CBI, the Federation of Small Businesses and employer organisations consistently identify as important.. 9 New Thinking - New Strategy Open Solutions Propriety Products CorporateEmployment Experiences of Work BusinessDrivers PersonalEnterprise Networked World Industrial World Artisanal World Entrepreneurial World Figure 4 - The future worlds of work (source: Gazelle Enterprising Futures) © 2014 Microsoft, Gazelle Group and Intel. All rights reserved.
  10. 10. Emphasising the horizontal part of the “T” - The fast changing nature of the global economy means that businesses large and small are increasingly emphasising the horizontal aspect of the T-shaped student when undertaking recruitment. In the most recent CBI growth report11 , the CBI clearly identify the innovative, resilient, persistent and enterprising skills base as critical for growth in the economy. This is evident by the phenomenon of “enterprise social” in many industries, which refers to the ability for employees in an enterprise to collaborate and to share knowledge and expertise with each other and with customers and partners. Finding innovative ways to embed digital skills as a core element of a student’s learning programme - Many jobs now require digital skills. This is especially important for entrepreneurs and small businesses where workers must be confident users of IT, not only to run an efficient business, but also to find and combine knowledge to generate new business. The criticality of digital skills is recognised by UNESCO’s creation of an ICT framework for teachers12 and which is adopted en masse in Morocco and Netherlands, and US13 . There are those that would argue that digital functional skills should be on a par with Maths and English. The sector is already significantly challenged however to create the space and recruit the staff to deliver the GCSE Maths and English outcomes the government require. Instead we need to create additional space for students to learn and develop digital skills at the highest level. In many instances this will have to be by self-organised learning, peer group support and the use of volunteering employer mentors. Incorporating entrepreneurial learning – We must equip students with entrepreneurship as a core skill. Many entrepreneurs develop this skill throughout their lives, rather than in business and management institutions. To foster a generation of self-confident, independent and resourceful learners, we need to build entrepreneurial thought and action into the DNA of the student experience. Entrepreneurship needs to be developed throughout education, to train them in the fundamentals of business creation and management. All the evidence suggests that we need to incorporate entrepreneurial learning into the methodology of our teaching and learning practice. Across the globe, fee paying students and company executives invest large sums in developing entrepreneurial thought and action as a practice, individually and corporately. If it is so valued by this group, why should it not become an integral part of our vocational curriculum? Self-sufficiency, resourcefulness, an ability to learn from others and an optimism and experimentation has to be at the core of students’ experience if they are to operate within a new world of work environment. We must resist the temptation to teach through traditional qualification based routes: instead we need to create the conditions where students can practice entrepreneurship and learn through trial and error. Emphasising learning at work and through work - All the evidence in the first two years of the Gazelle colleges’ experimentation demonstrates that learning is accelerated significantly through placing students directly in employment or social enterprise competitive environments. These students gain skills demonstrably faster, are more highly motivated, and are significantly more likely to embark upon a career that is linked to that experience. Learning is accelerated significantly through placing students directly in employment or social enterprise competitive environments We need to incorporate entrepreneurial learning into the methodology of our teaching and learning practice 10 Further Education Reimagined Preparing for the Future Workforce New Thinking - New Strategy 11 CBI Tomorrow’s growth: New routes to higher skills http://issuu.com/the-cbi/docs/tomorrow_s_growth_ report/26?e=8763041/4232155 12 UNESCO ICT Competency Frame for Teachers http://www.unesco.org/new/en/unesco/themes/icts/teacher-education/ unesco-ict-competency-framework-for-teachers/ 13 http://www.microsoft.com/en-us/showcase/details.aspx?uuid=bcfdb720-457a-41a5-87d0-f94b1c49f6d9
  11. 11. 14 http://www.ukces.org.uk/ 15 http://www.157group.co.uk/ 11 New Thinking - New Strategy Collaborate for a New Skills Pipeline UK Commission for Employment and Skills (UKCES)14 , 157 Group15 and Gazelle have consulted widely with employers and business leaders on the shape of future employer college partnerships and collaboration. Their seminal report to be published simultaneously with this Further Education Reimagined report calls for a mind-set change on a scale that the FE sector last encountered when embracing the widening participation agenda. The challenging question set out in the UKCES, 157 Group and Gazelle report could only be answered in our opinion through the strategic and systematic application of new technologies. Their report calls for colleges to contribute to the economy, to be more analytical in their understanding of the labour market and growth potential of employers, to build effective digital capacity in their communities and to communicate more effectively with local employers. All of these require a link strategy around the technology that can deliver the outputs on a significant scale. The College Leadership questions: Do we actively analyse the employment landscape that our students are supplying? Is the design of learning supported by technology taking account of the changing nature of that employment? Do we have a strategy for embedding digital skills with students and the workforce within their training and learning programmes? Are we confident that the planned spending in technology over the next 3 years will deliver better employment and earning opportunities for students? Have we considered bigger collaborative ventures to secure the digital and technology capacity you may need to deliver your learning vision? The Business Engagement questions: Do colleges, businesses, entrepreneurs and industry bodies have a systematic way to collaboratively forecast demand for future skills based on industry, global and local trends? © 2014 Microsoft, Gazelle Group and Intel. All rights reserved.
  12. 12. Figure 5 – A blend of learning, with emphasis on unstructured, and self-direction (source: Chief Learning Officer) 12 Further Education Reimagined Preparing for the Future Workforce New Thinking - New Strategy Thinking Shift 2 – Invest in Technology to Deliver Student Success and Employment The changes described in this paper cannot easily be achieved without a transformation in understanding how technology can deliver and support the learning vision of the corporation. There is clear evidence across the sector of investments in technology which are largely driven by either suppliers or by senior leaders within colleges who may or may not have the necessary acumen to invest in the areas of greatest impact. Massively Open Online Courses (MOOC) offer a high degree of flexibility and student empowerment. To succeed in today’s climate colleges should find ways to combine the high achievement rates of the best traditional learning with the technical advantages of MOOC-like delivery. Introducing a higher blend of self- directed learning into courses, with technology as the enabler, is the key to the creation of a more dynamic and varied curriculum. Self-directed Learning Much of the learning within our colleges is still directed, structured and planned. This reflects the fact that much of the accountability around funding has required an audit that fulfilment is easily measurable in terms of hours and employment. Recent flexibilities provided by the government open up much greater potential for a new approach. The work of Sugata Mitri with Gazelle Colleges, Highbury and Barking and Dagenham has begun to test the potential for self-directed and self-organised learning to create greater space in the traditional curriculum. The work of Sugata Mitri across the globe in both Primary and Secondary education has proven that students as young as 8 can create high levels of learning through the use of technology with or without tutor support. If we are to achieve a T-shaped learning outcome at the scale needed and within the confines of the current funding model then we need to embrace the power of technology to enable students to access all sorts of interactive and skills based learning opportunities that do not require the deployment of teachers in every environment. Self-directed learning is also prevalent in the business world. At Microsoft and Intel, “readiness” is a set of activities which every employee is asked to perform. This covers continuous learning of technical skills and professional development or soft skills. Some courses are mandatory for all, others are role-specific and many are an optional individual choice. The employee can work within the general priorities of the company to develop skills based on their own priorities so that they are actively engaged in detailed development of their own and the companies interests based on their assessment of need. Managers act as coaches to guide the employees on a learning path which ensures they are broadening their horizons and experiences alongside technical skills development as a prerequisite for continued employment. In both companies learning is a blend (see Figure 5), with an emphasis on unstructured and self-direction, and enabled by technology. Directed learning Formal courses Unstructured learning Informal courses Structured learning Learning-focused engagements My status Matching system ?
  13. 13. 13 New Thinking - New Strategy In order to deliver this model at scale, colleges will need to create a shift from the existing staffing resource profile of directed teaching towards a profile of coaches to support students in self-direction and a blend of structured and unstructured learning. Our colleges need to learn from progressive practice in organisations that have radically changed their approach to employee development. In some of the most progressive companies, the employee profile in terms of their learning development has moved significantly towards the provision of technology- supported learning and learning communities across different parts of their organisations. There are different examples of this in the further education sector that we also need to explore and develop more widely. Use Technology to Drive “Better for Less” Information Technology has rarely been used in further education to change or transform the fundamentals of learning. Innovative new technologies such as the PC, digital whiteboards and tablets have all generally reinforced a more traditional pedagogy of student learning. Teachers have deployed the technology well but in most instances the technology remains relatively tutor dependant in terms of its content and delivery. This is not a failure of technology per se as the economy at large is successfully embracing the potential of technology to deliver agility in to a whole range of occupations and businesses. Instead it can be argued that the failure to capitalise sufficiently on the potential of technology does not lie with the tutor but with the capacity and expertise at the more strategic levels. It is generally easier to control resources and student movement in a constrained environment than it is in an environment that demands high levels of trust and embraces uncertainty. There is a need we think for a debate around how in a public sector environment colleges can liberate learners and enable a much more mobile approach to the acquisition of skills and knowledge. College leaders and tutors need to invest in their own understanding of technology capability and its opportunities. Leaders and tutors need to be knowledgeable about how young people leverage technologies in everyday life and how they enable businesses to grow and to learn more about their markets. This knowledge equips leaders and tutors to leverage innovation and practice from other contexts. That knowledge must be better located within the senior team that create the vision for the organisation and invest in the technology to support it. The College Leadership questions: Is there a need for a more strategic conversation with staff representatives regionally and nationally about the changing role of the teacher and the support needed to strengthen their engagement in the coaching, mentoring and delivery of a more technology based learning output? Could college leaders combine in their locality to create a more personalised development programme for their workforce? Could a shared investment create better opportunities for those staff? The College Teaching and Learning questions: Do we need to invest in higher levels of experimentation and testing around self-directed and self-organised learning? Can colleges sustain a tutor intensive timetabled and predictable model of learning delivery within the current funding climate? College leaders and tutors need to invest in their own understanding of technology capability and its opportunities. © 2014 Microsoft, Gazelle Group and Intel. All rights reserved.
  14. 14. 14 Further Education Reimagined Preparing for the Future Workforce New Thinking - New Strategy Examples of actions that colleges can take to inform and develop new approaches is characterised by the bullet points and Figure 6 below. Implement anywhere, anytime learning in order to save building and space costs, to provide students with a flexible productive learning environment and potentially to reach more students (using MOOC). Implement IT shared services in order to leverage economies of scale. Implement social networking technologies in order to encourage more unstructured learning. Implement personalised learning (co-creation of a learning programme and content specific to a student, and frequent timely feedback – as described in section The Changing World of Education). Use games such as SimVenture to simulate how individuals may start and run businesses from scratch. Colleges need to recognise that the future of Further Education is not all digital, but that an appropriate blend of digital and traditional approaches will realise the strategic vision that reflects the preferences and needs of new generations of students and employers. To be a wise investment any technology-blended strategy will still have to answer these questions: How does [an investment in] a solution enable educators and students to be at their most productive and creative in order to improve their capability? How does it meet the needs of prospective employers and employability schemes such as apprenticeships? How does it meet the values and preferences of younger generations? How does it reduce the cost per student of high quality learning, enabling the same funds to have further reach? What cultural change is needed to embrace this new solution? North Hertfordshire College provides an early example with a blend of digital (a team-based Learning Management Platform call 3D Learning) and traditional approaches. The digital platform starts to deliver aspects of the scenario as described in section The Changing World of Work. The College Leadership questions: Do we have an in-depth understanding of technology, what can provide opportunities, what can disrupt, what is obsolete, and when? Are colleges part of any working group to adopt the newer technologies as described in Figure 1 and Note A? The Student Advocacy questions: Do we partially or fully leverage technology to provide student empowerment (e.g. through personalised learning with real time feedback, a flexible and productive learning environment through anywhere anytime and mobile learning)? Figure 6 – An example of technology solutions
  15. 15. 15 New Thinking - New Strategy Introduce Employability-Focussed Measures The Programme for International Student Assessment (PISA) is a worldwide study that aims to evaluate education systems worldwide by testing the skills and knowledge of 15-year-olds. To date, 70 countries participate in the study. PISA transforms Primary and Secondary education because it does not measure qualifications: it measures skills and knowledge. By collecting such high quality data, countries are then able to determine what solutions work or do not work. It can be argued that Further Education is in need of the same high quality data to demonstrate what works and to demonstrate Further Education’s contribution to UK competitiveness. Such data is needed about individual colleges, providers, students and employers. This may be granular to the level of individual courses or even individual coaches. The data serves multiple purposes: It provides students and employers with quantifiable employability data to help them to make choices about where to spend their resources. It allows colleges and learning providers to differentiate themselves, and if necessary, specialise in areas where they are truly excellent. It provides learning providers and colleges with insights on how to improve and challenges on how to keep up with the best. Further consideration should be given to the development of an marketplace feedback system like Amazon or Expedia to create a nationwide model that helps students and employers to make some judgements about the overall experience their funding will purchase in particular parts of the education system. This has to include the subjective comments of students on their experience of their tutoring, their coaching, their learning environments, their employability, and their connection to industry. In such a transparent environment there are clearly some risks, but with proper dialogue between the sector, employers and government, we can arrive at a place where employers and students confidence is built around a sector that is as open with its data as are many other industries such as hospitality, catering and health. The College Leadership questions: Do we collate and synthesize relevant data to drive improvements in the experience of your students? Do we provide access to data that allows employers, governors, stakeholders and students to proactively evaluate the college’s contribution to the local economy? Do we invest in solutions that would allow you as CEO to make more informed judgements insights when investing in technology infrastructure? Can we evaluate the contribution of technology to your strategic and operational performance annually? Thinking Shift 3 – Increase Transparency and Accountability © 2014 Microsoft, Gazelle Group and Intel. All rights reserved.
  16. 16. We set out to stimulate a debate about the need to transform Further Education in order to strengthen its quality and relevance to industry and society at reduced cost. The case for change is compelling and pivots around three key factors: the changing world of work, the changing world of education, and the intense drive for transparency and accountability. We propose that college leaders, employers, entrepreneurs and government embrace the three shifts in our thinking to: Actively develop strategies for the new worlds of employment (and self-employment). Invest in technology to deliver student success and employment. Increase transparency and accountability. The key considerations from the thinking shifts are: Summary and Call for Actions 16 Further Education Reimagined Preparing for the Future Workforce On Leadership On Teaching and Learning On Student Advocacy On Business Engagement A strategy for embedding digital skills with students and the workforce within their training and learning programmes. A strategic conversation with staff representatives regionally and nationally about the changing role of the teacher and the support needed to strengthen their engagement. Acquiring an in-depth understanding of technology, what can provide opportunities, what can disrupt, what is obsolete, and when. Providing data that allows employers, governors and students to proactively evaluate the college’s contribution to the local economy. Investing in higher levels of experimentation and testing around self-directed and self-organised learning. Provide student empowerment through personalised learning, with real time feedback. Provide students with a flexible and productive learning environment through anywhere anytime and mobile learning. Validating the Learning Company concept as an alternative to apprenticeship with businesses and industry bodies. Collaboration between colleges, business and industry bodies to forecast future demands for skills.
  17. 17. 17 The challenges to these transformations are leadership, funding and culture change. We speculate that many of us do not generally have the skills, expertise, knowledge and resources we need to create a coherent technology strategy in support of our medium and long term corporate objectives. We suggest that many of our governors do not generally have the tools to effectively evaluate the impact of technology investment on student success. We also suggest that there could be resistance (active and passive) from some college staff who do not see the benefits of transformation. Our call for actions are for college leaders to: Collaborate with each other to create a common strategy and transformation roadmap that covers changes to leadership, teaching and learning, business engagement as well as data and technology changes. Find ways to combine and share in the investment needed to produce affordable technology based solutions to deliver new curriculum and new learning models for their students. Smaller colleges in particular will struggle to compete in technology based learning markets. Hold regional discussions with LEPs around the investment needed to deliver affordable learning to individuals, communities and employers. Microsoft and Intel with Gazelle are inviting colleges to provide feedback on the above challenges and to input on how the sector might gear up to meet these challenges collaboratively. Summary and Call for Actions © 2014 Microsoft, Gazelle Group and Intel. All rights reserved.
  18. 18. 18 Further Education Reimagined Preparing for the Future Workforce Five key technology trends are emerging as fundamental enablers for education reform. When considered together they can dramatically alter both opportunity and output for our colleges. Cloud Cloud (computing) describes the concept where online services are accessible from anywhere, anytime in the same way we access other utilities such as water and electricity. With high speed networks, it would seem as if the services are being delivered from a range of consumer devices. Cloud enables data and information to be available from any connected device. It enables rich collaboration and communication in “virtual” environments, it breaks down preconceptions about the location of individuals within a cohort and increases the reach of the individual pedagogue. Easy recording and logging makes out-of-time learning the norm. If looked at operationally, the cloud can be seen as an infrastructure largely reducing the overhead costs of technology. If however, it is viewed as the route to bring learning to those employees and communities that currently do not access our colleges, it could become a much more significant element in the strategic driver for the employer and community partnerships that so many of the early reports in the sector have encouraged. Note A – Key Technologies for Further Education Reform Cloud Mobility GamificationSocialBig Data Cloud enables data and information to be available from any connected device. Figure 7 - The key technologies
  19. 19. 19 Big data The key to becoming an outstanding organisation in the complex world of education can be determined by the quality of student outcome and feedback. Big data (learning analytics) will be the key technology for teaching and performance management in the future. Big data allows tutors and coaches to learn more from their students past while looking to their future. It uses measurement, collection, analysis and reporting of data about students and their context for the purpose of understanding and optimising learning and the environments in which it occurs. The profiling of students using data that helps us to understand as much about their motivation as their skill can fundamentally change the nature of the experience they need within the college. Using big data, tutors can answer questions which were beyond their reach in the past. They can extract insight, knowledge and identify trends to personalise learning and to stretch individual student performance to new levels. Harnessing this data and then using it to create the pedagogy that will best determine individual success presents both challenge and opportunity. Big Data also helps colleges identify employers to position apprenticeships and other work-based learning schemes. It helps to manage and automate the individual relationships within these complex pathways and offer dashboard-based insights into progress in real-time – enabling remedial change to occur in time to have an impact. Mobile (Learning) Mobile learning is one of the fastest-growing education technology trends. According to Ambient Insight research, the worldwide mobile learning market will be worth $9.1 Billion by 2015. This technology fundamentally challenges the traditional learning paradigms in colleges of vocational education as students can connect to learning opportunities from anywhere in the world. Mobility has two dimensions: students are not restricted to a classroom and the devices are easily portable and usable for communication as well as information delivery. Importantly, this form of learning takes learning to the preferred technology of our students, enabling them to connect with each other, to prepare material and to engage in real time activities using video or audio conferencing services. It is imperative that the design of learning in the future and the location of those learning opportunities, reflects the strength and potential of the mobile learning environments. Colleges have to ask where mobile learning technology features in their strategy for value creation and community access going forward. Note A - Key Technologies © 2014 Microsoft, Gazelle Group and Intel. All rights reserved. Mobile learning is one of the fastest-growing education technology trends. The worldwide mobile learning market will be worth $9.1 Billion by 2015.
  20. 20. 20 Further Education Reimagined Preparing for the Future Workforce Note A - Key Technologies Social (Learning) The emergence of the social and connected web allows people not only to consume information and knowledge but to be active co-creators of that knowledge. It fundamentally changes the way learning is perceived and defines the requirements for advanced learning systems. Supported by technology, learning will increasingly become an active social process. Learners have the ability to acquire new knowledge, principles and concepts for themselves through dialogue and interaction with others and through experimentation and risk taking in safe learning environments. The shift from the design of the learning content to how that content is co-created and shared by students, paves the way for a new and more relevant type of pedagogy. It fundamentally challenges the role of the teacher in Further Education. It suggests that students can, in many instances, learn effectively without the support of a teacher and can acquire both knowledge and skill outside a cost based tutor delivered environment. In such a scenario the potential to create a much higher value output from Government funded learning resource, becomes a reality. Gamification Gamification could have an important impact in meeting the preferences of current student generations. Gamification applies game design into real life situations for purposes other than entertainment. Some businesses have started to use it to encourage learning and participation with great effect. Kentucky Fried Chicken (KFC) US, which employs 140,000 people, changed its training from paper with a virtual world after noticing that a significant portion of its workforce are young and tech- savvy. KFC has seen high adoption rates, positive feedback from learners and fewer on-the-job errors. Future learning systems will benefit from the incorporation of game elements into education settings. Game mechanics will help to keep students coming back to their learning, reputation mechanics will motivate students to choose to complete more challenging activities and content, while social mechanics will promote greater peer and tutor interaction. As gamification spreads throughout the real world, there is little question it will also impact our education systems. When words like “Play”, “Games”, “Missions” and “Fun” are used in front of students, when collecting badges and ascending the leader board is part of learning, we will have a powerful source of energy creation and interest. Gamification will be a part of students’ lives for years to come. If we can harness the energy, motivation and sheer potential of their game-play and direct it toward learning, we can give students the tools to become high scorers and winners in real life. The opportunities from the above trends are significant. The learning environment can move from fixed /location to anywhere, any time learning; from periodic, irregular to near real time feedback; from teacher directed learning to learning from any sources. Many other possible changes can be envisaged to transform learning.
  21. 21. 21© 2014 Microsoft, Gazelle Group and Intel. All rights reserved. Note B – Microsoft, Intel Solutions and Certifications Microsoft and Intel have a range of products and services that support the key technologies for Further Education Reform. Many of these are provided free to Further Education. In combination they can provide the transformed environment of the college of the future. In addition, both companies have a number of programs that support the necessary cultural change that all stakeholders must embrace for the institution to realise the full benefits of transformation. Here are some examples of these platforms and programmes. Please contact Mike Morris (mikemor@microsoft.com) or Julie Penman (julie.penman@intel.com) for more information. Cloud Office 365. Comprising email, web apps, Unified Communication, blogging, Video conferencing and 50GBs of storage, Office 365 offers a transformational capability to all colleges. Office 365 is at no cost to Education. Got to: http://slidesha.re/1ir4PwI Student Advantage. As part of Office 365 all students can download up to 15 copies office 2013 for free. Got to: http://slidesha.re/1iqprGg Azure. Colleges can reduce the cost of data centre processes by 90% by removing private data centres and using the Azure cloud. Go to: http://bit.ly/1fhYuUQ Big Data Real time intelligence based insight engines permeate all Microsoft data products. They can address structured and unstructured data and can be delivered via the Cloud or even as simple to deploy apps. Products with Business Intelligence built in include Excel 2013, (http://bit.ly/1n830mz) Power B.I. for Office 365, (http://bit.ly/RY8KY0) SQL Server, (http://bit.ly/1lWG4M7) SQL Server 2012 Parallel Data Warehouse (http://bit.ly/1ljNeHA), Microsoft Azure HDInsight and Microsoft Azure Marketplace. A full overview can be found at http://bit.ly/1fi11P2 Mobile Learning Intel processors have the power to deliver the high performance that meaningful creation and productivity require. They drive a range of form factors including laptop and tablet devices that enable complete mobility. Windows 8 operating system provides a single user experience and secure environment across PC’s, laptops, tablets and phones. More information can be found at http://intel.ly/1h3y9Fd and http://bit.ly/1ruUUqw Social Yammer is an Enterprise class social networking engine that is closed to your organisation and secure. https://about.yammer.com/ Lync This offers video conferencing, instant messaging, classroom recording and many unified communications features. http://bit.ly/QLHhI8 SharePoint Online offers the capability of blogging and document sharing. Yammer, Lync and Sharepoint Online are free to Education in Office 365.
  22. 22. 22 Further Education Reimagined Preparing for the Future Workforce Gamification Office 365, Yammer and SharePoint can combine to deliver gamification relevant to Education and the work place. There will soon be IT Academy modules helping Teachers to learn how to deploy Gamification. http://bit.ly/1k8KeuT I.T. Academy Microsoft IT Academy is the training programme and certification aimed at both business and education audience. ITA certification is recognised by Microsoft partners and others employers globally. ITA is aligned to the UNESCO ICT framework for teacher. It is deployed en masse in the Netherlands, Morocco and US. It is mapped many UK qualifications and apprenticeship programmes. It can be used to enhance student and employer value and also to enable cultural change through teacher and leader CPD. Teachers can train to become a Microsoft Certified Educator, (http://bit.ly/1mPy4fn), demonstrating on their CV a proven ability to use technology effectively in the teaching of all subjects. IT Academy is central to the delivering universal Digital Literacy. http://slidesha.re/1pE5cc5 The Microsoft Intelligent Learning Platform (MILP) These platforms and programs above – and the many other platforms and programmes from Microsoft products can combine to produce highly integrated learner enabled environments. They can help Colleges to deliver excellent pedagogy, completion and student success at the online scale of a MOOC. One example of an integrated solution is the Microsoft Intelligent Learning Platform MILP is the first step towards enabling: Learning from anywhere and at any time Real time and regular feedback and awards to students and tutors Learning pathway to provide students with a roadmap Collaboration between students and with employers MILP is built on collaboration solutions Microsoft Office 365 and customer relationship management Microsoft Dynamics. http://slidesha.re/QLJeEv Note B - Microsoft, Intel Solutions and Certifications Learning Pathway (on Microsoft Azure Cloud) o  Matching skill profiles to career plans o  Matching employers to career plans o  Matching learning modules to career plans o  Giving the student a progressive roadmap Identity / Single Sign On Employer o Skill profiles o Module feedback o Candidate pipeline (anonymised) o Mentoring (1:1) Learner o Progress o Tasks o Career goals/ recommendations o Badges o Module feedback o Mentoring (1:1) Grading & badges Course creation Course consumption Provider o Grading o Badges o Employer feedback o Learner feedback Student Information System Moodle (On premises or in Microsoft Azure Cloud) o Course creation o Course consumption o Grading o Badges
  23. 23. 23 About the Authors Ha Cole is an Enterprise Strategist at Microsoft and has a special interest in Education. She has 25 years of business and IT experience in the finance, retail and public sectors, at Merrill Lynch, Thomson Reuters, Tesco and Microsoft. Ha has combined her interest in technology and education with her experience in these organisations with to reimagine Further Education. Fintan Donohue is the CEO of the Gazelle Group. He is widely credited with igniting the debate around entrepreneurship as an agent for change in the Further Education sector. He was the architect of the highly praised Bridging the Gap scheme, which won the Podium Gold award for the most inspirational skills programme of the London 2012 Olympic and Paralympic Games. In his role as CEO of Gazelle he is working extensively internationally, not only developing transformational learning models but also putting entrepreneurs at the centre of the entrepreneurial college movement. About the key contributors Dave Coplin is the Chief Envisioning Officer for Microsoft UK and an established thought leader on the role of technology in our personal and professional lives. He has worked across a wide range of industries and customers, providing strategic advice and guidance around the intersection of a modern society and technology both inside and outside of the world of work. Dave is passionate about turning the base metal of technology into valuable assets that affect the way we live work and play and in so doing, move the focus from the technology itself to the outcome it enables. His first book: “Business Reimagined”, provided a view of a new working environment based on collaborative and flexible working. His latest book, “The Rise of the Humans” provides a further call to action, for both individuals and organisations to harness not hate the digital deluge, to rise up and take back control of the potential that technology offers our society. Dave has contributed to a range of media articles, conferences and forums all relating to the goal of making technology less “visible” and more “valuable” in our daily lives. Chris McLean has worked in Further Education sector for the last 30 years. His current role is Deputy Principal at North Hertfordshire College, with responsibility for Curriculum, Quality, IT, Information Services, Marketing and HR. He also works closely with the Gazelle Colleges Group in the areas of curriculum innovation and the use of technology for learning, teaching and assessment. Mike Morris is the Manager for Further Education and Skills at Microsoft. Over the last 15 years he has delivered technology solutions to Colleges and Universities from Companies such as Dell, EMC Adobe and Microsoft. This has given him strong understanding of how technology engages with the core activities of a college to improve outcomes. Linda Chandler is a creative leader who is passionate about making a difference to society through the use of technology. With over 20 years in the sector, she has experienced many facets of the IT industry, having worked for large and small organisations including start-ups. She is currently leading the Microsoft UK Cities and Regions Strategy of which Education is a key component. Acknowledgement We offer our sincere thanks to the Association of Colleges, UKCES, 157 Group, Gazelle Group of Colleges, Risual Ltd and Freedom Ltd. They have provided tremendous help to validate our thinking and to shape the final report. © 2014 Microsoft, Gazelle Group and Intel. All rights reserved. Ha Cole Enterprise Strategist Fintan Donohue CEO of the Gazelle Group
  24. 24. © 2014 Microsoft, Gazelle Group and Intel. All rights reserved. Click here to return to the start