02 Mar 2020
MillionPlus, the Association for Modern Universities, is today (2 March) calling on the government to turbocharge technical education, as it publishes its latest research report.
Levelling up: investing in higher technical education at universities in England explores the depth of provision of level 4 and 5 higher technical education, that equips people all over the country with skills keenly sought by employers.
The report includes a number of recommendations that would help boost the number of students and the esteem in which higher technical qualifications are held, including: introducing maintenance grants for all learners undertaking level 4 and 5 qualifications; encouraging all providers of level 4 and 5 education to register with the Office for Students to enable better loan access; and support for collaboration between universities and further education colleges delivering higher technical education.
Professor Rama Thirunamachandran, Chair of MillionPlus and Vice-Chancellor of Canterbury Christ Church University, said:
“As the effects on the labour market of AI, automation and the fourth industrial revolution continue to grow, there are rightly calls for increased work-focused and employer-led education. A great breadth of such provision does exist already in modern universities, but this delivery in every corner of England is too often unheralded.
“Working with employers on curriculum design, placements, apprenticeships and course delivery, modern universities deliver higher education that is both vocational and academic. They equip students with not just hands-on skills but also the underpinning knowledge needed to change career should they wish to in later life.
“The new government should commit to enabling greater diversity of workplace-focused provision and ensure it is flexible and accessible enough for students at any stage of their working life. We hope to work with the new team of ministers to achieve that goal.”
The report recommends that the UK government in England should:
Notes to editors
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