This blog is part of the series featuring ideas contained in the new HEPI-Brightside report, Reaching the parts of society universities have missed: A manifesto for the new Director for Fair Access and Participation. It showcases the idea from Vonnie Sandlan, Senior Policy Officer at Colleges Scotland.
A mechanism of delivery which works well in Scotland, underpinned by the Scottish Credit and Qualifications Framework, is the clearly-mapped and accessible pathways to progression.
These pathways exist through colleges in Scotland delivering education and skills training beyond the traditional remit of further education, meaning individuals can study at higher education level in college with all the support, guidance and advice that exists for individuals in a further education setting.
Post-16 opportunities are changing to meet the needs of a new generation of millennial learners whose curriculum has taught them how to learn.
A focus on tackling youth unemployment, combined with efforts to keep young people at school until the end of S6 (Sixth Year), and a dynamic labour market with changing expectations on workers, has encouraged new ways of thinking: from the Foundation Apprenticeship, undertaken in the senior phase of school and delivered by colleges, which gives work- based learning a space at school, to increasing articulation partnerships forming efficient and cohesive pathways from school through college to university.
The college sector in Scotland is integral in both pre- and post- 16 education and ensures that learners are equipped with the skills and experience to move comfortably into employment and deploy their talents.