Edmond, N., Hillier, Y. and Price, M.
Between a rock and a hard place: the role of HE and Foundation Degrees in workforce development
Education and Training, 49 (3).
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This paper explores how HE institutions are responding to the workforce remodelling agenda of public services and the emergence of ‘para-professions’ within traditionally low paid / low status employment.
With reference to recent research, the authors review their experience of Foundation Degrees in Education and explore tensions in managing the competing needs of the varying stakeholders.
A model of work-based learning which includes consideration of the following key areas:
CPD and Professional Bodies – external validation and professional recognition
Progression into HE through the workforce
Pedagogy of WBL
This article identifies a need for the systematic examination of the issues raised by the implementation of FDs as CPD for employed staff. The assumption that FD provision for employees results in more effective work-based learning is challenged. The importance of FDs in accreditation for a range of occupations in the Children's Workforce also suggests a need for research into the 'professionalisation' of these occupations.
The issue of employer engagement is fundamental and we would argue that HE has a crucial role to play but that ensuring employer engagement requires responsiveness on the part of university structures, as well as the capacity to stimulate employer engagement and/or sanction lack of employer engagement at the level of individual programmes.
This paper provides information about the new phenomenon of implementation of Foundation Degrees to support workforce development.
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