• Gaining more than just vocational skills: Evaluating women learners’ aspirations through the capability approach

      Stuart, Rebecca; University of the Western Cape (Springer International Publishing, 2018-12-12)
      Vocational education and training had been a popular choice for women learners in the English Further Education sector. However, policy makers and policy researchers have characterized these women learners as providing a poor return on investment due to their failure to enter immediate employment. As a result, there have been significant cuts to funding. Such policy processes have not engaged with why these women returned to education and what they stood to gain from participation. This major absence is the focus of this chapter. Framed using a capabilities approach, women learners were asked why they had returned to FE and how they were going to use their knowledge and training. Using capabilities as a lens reveals a nuanced and complex picture of how education helps them to expand their well-being, agency, and freedom achievement.
    • Gaining more than just vocational skills: Evaluating women learners’ aspirations through the capability approach

      Suart, Rebecca; University of Nottingham (Springer, 2018-12-12)
      Vocational education and training had been a popular choice for women learners in the English Further Education sector. However, policy makers and policy researchers have characterized these women learners as providing a poor return on investment due to their failure to enter immediate employment. As a result, there have been significant cuts to funding. Such policy processes have not engaged with why these women returned to education and what they stood to gain from participation. This major absence is the focus of this chapter. Framed using a capabilities approach, women learners were asked why they had returned to FE and how they were going to use their knowledge and training. Using capabilities as a lens reveals a nuanced and complex picture of how education helps them to expand their well-being, agency, and freedom achievement.
    • Gatsby careers benchmark north east implementation pilot: interim evaluation (2015-2017)

      Hanson, Jill; Vigurs, Katy; Moore, Nicki; Everitt, Julia; Clark, Lewis; International Centre for Guidance Studies (University of Derby, 2019-02-15)
      This report presents interim evaluation findings on the implementation of the Gatsby Benchmarks (herewith referred to as the Benchmarks) for good career guidance with a sample of 16 pilot schools and colleges (herewith referred to as education providers) in the North East of England. These interim findings report progress made against the Benchmarks during the course of the pilot (autumn 2015 to autumn 2017), the enablers and barriers faced, and the impact of the Benchmarks on learners’ career readiness and attainment. The interim findings suggest the following: Timescale - Schools and colleges involved were able to make significant strides towards fully meeting most, if not all, Benchmarks within two years. To date Benchmark 2 (Learning from career and labour market information) and Benchmark 7 (Encounters with FE and HE) have seen the largest increase in the number of pilot education providers fully achieving them. Benchmark 3 (Addressing the needs of every pupil) and Benchmark 4 (Linking curriculum to careers) have the least number of pilot education providers fully achieving them. Positive impact on learners. Learners show an increase in some aspects of career readiness and tentative increases in some aspects of GCSE attainment. Effective implementation of the Benchmarks. This was enabled by the existence of a regional facilitator to support pilot education providers and strong provider leadership and robust organisational infrastructures. Key barriers were a lack of time and space (in the curriculum), a lack of funding and a lack of commitment at senior leadership level, which impacted on achieving a cultural shift in some education providers. Regional impact. The implementation of the Benchmarks is impacting more widely in the region with non-pilot education providers forming links with pilot providers to seek support on developing good career guidance in their settings. Furthermore, wider stakeholders such as local employers and providers of careers education were also using the Benchmarks to review and develop their services to schools/colleges. Emerging challenges: A noticeable challenge was how the term ‘meaningful’, in relation to encounters with employers and employees, was interpreted and how education providers monitor provision of such encounters.
    • The gender and age profile of the house building sector

      Shepherd, Claire; University of Derby (NHBC Foundation, 2017-02-06)
      The UK house-building industry is being challenged to deliver a increasing number of new homes. However, it is also facing skills shortages among its workforce, as older workers leave the industry but are not replaced by new entrants. This report aims to establish the diversity of the house-building industry in terms of the age and gender profile of the workforce and is over-reliant on older workers. Women are engaged in house building, but in relatively small numbers and predominantly in office-based roles. The industry is taking steps to tackle the growing skills shortages, but more needs to be done. This report summarizes the actions that have been taken so far, and identifies opportunities for further progress on increasing the diversity of the workforce in the future.
    • Get yourself connected: conceptualising the role of digital technologies in Norwegian career guidance

      Hooley, Tristram; Shepherd, Claire; Dodd, Vanessa; University of Derby (International Centre for Guidance Studies, University of Derby, 2015-10)
      This report outlines the role of digital technologies in the provision of career guidance. It was commissioned by the c ommittee on career guidance which is advising the Norwegian Government following a review of the countries skills system by the OECD. In this report we argue that career guidance and online career guidance in particular can support the development of Norwa y’s skills system to help meet the economic challenges that it faces.
    • 'Getting hired' is just part of it

      Grant, Korin; Hooley, Tristram; Loughborough University; The Careers and Employment Agency (Higher Education Careers Services Unit, 2017-11)
    • Getting it down on paper: the importance of letter writing for young people's employability

      Dodd, Vanessa; Hooley, Tristram; International Centre for Guidance Studies (2015-09-11)
    • Getting Qualified in Woodwork: Young peoples reasons for choosing VET programmes in the UK

      Atkins, Liz; Northumbria University (NCVER, 10/07/2014)
      This paper reports on a qualitative study carried out in the UK during summer 2010 on behalf of City and Guilds Centre for Skills Development (CSD). The study formed part of a wider, international project which aimed to explore young people's perceptions of vocational education and training (VET), and as such is of significance in the Australian context: it also formed part of the evidence for the influential Wolf Review of Vocational Education which reported to the UK government in 2011. The study found that serendipity, contingent events and influence of significant others are most influential in choice of vocational programme and that young peoples understandings of possible career paths vary in sophistication, differentiated by age, programme level and subject area. Perceived attractiveness of VET was closely associated with societal perception of their courses (which the young people considered to be negative) suggesting that, in the UK, pre-Coalition policy (before May 2010) has been unsuccessful in addressing issues of parity of esteem, despite considerable policy investment in the VET sector. The paper explores the implications of these findings for the English models of Vocational Education in the context of current Coalition policy. It concludes that whilst some recent policy initiatives, such as the proposed introduction of University Technical Colleges may be successful in raising the esteem of some forms of specialised VET, broad vocational courses at lower levels will continue to be held in lower esteem and to confer little educational advantage on those young people, largely drawn from working class backgrounds and displaying multiple exclusionary characteristics, who pursue them.
    • Give yourself the edge: Evaluation report.

      Dodd, Vanessa; Hanson, Jill; University of Derby (University of Derby, 2018-09-06)
    • The global graduate: developing the global careers service

      Neary, Siobhan; Thambar, N.; Bell, Sharon; University of Derby, iCeGS (CRAC, 2014-04)
      Graduate employability is an international issue. Students seek a higher education experience with added value in terms of employability and an international perspective. How do careers services meet the expectations that accompany these aspirations? The University of Nottingham, an established global university with campuses in Malaysia and China, attracts students from across the world. These students have diverse and culturally-specific career development needs, requiring skilled practitioners with knowledge of the global graduate opportunity structure. This article explores ways in which the Careers and Employability Services are being developed to meet a global market through support for staff and internationalised employer engagement.
    • Going further and higher together

      Atkins, Liz; Northumbria University (06/06/2014)
    • Good timing: Implementing STEM careers strategy in secondary schools

      Finegold, Peter; Stagg, Peter; Hutchinson, Jo; Isinglass Consultancy; Warwick University; University of Derby (Centre for Education and Industry, University of Warwick, 2011)
      Good Timing is the final report of a three-year programme of work, commissioned by the Department for Education, and carried out by the Centre for Education and Industry at the University of Warwick (CEI), the International Centre for Guidance Studies at the University of Derby (iCeGS) and Isinglass Consultancy Ltd. The programme explored potential to embed STEM careers awareness in the early stages of secondary education.
    • Government inspiration vision statement and other recent developments: Policy Commentary 24

      Watts, A. G.; University of Derby (Careers England, 2013-11-24)
      This is the twenty-fourth in an occasional series of briefing notes on key policy documents related to the future of career guidance services in England. the Government also published an Inspiration Vision Statement. This has clearly been the basis for Ministerial statements in two recent Parliamentary question sessions: in the House of Lords on 23 October 2013; and in the House of Commons on 11 November 2013. This Policy Commentary analyses these various statements. It demonstrates that the Government, despite its earlier promises to achieve a renaissance of the careers profession, appears now to be writing careers professionals out of the policy script.
    • Government response to Education Select Committee Report : Careers England Policy Commentary 20

      Watts, A. G.; University of Derby (Careers England, 2013-04)
      This is the twentieth in an occasional series of briefing notes produced for Careers England on key policy documents related to the future of career guidance services in England. This briefing note describes and provides context to the Government response to Education Select Committee Report.
    • Government response to Heseltine Review: Careers England Policy Commentary 19

      Watts, A. G.; University of Derby (Careers England, 2013-03)
      This is the nineteenth in an occasional series of briefing notes produced for Careers England on key policy documents related to the future of career guidance services in England. This briefing note describes and provides context to the Heseltine Review report, 'No Stone Unturned: In Pursuit of Growth'.
    • Graduate career handbook: A supplementary guide to the handbook for providing career support and employability programmes

      Hooley, Tristram; Grant, Korin; University of Derby; Loughborough University (Crimson and Trotman, 2017)
      We have written this guide for both academics who are delivering employability modules within the curriculum and career and employability professionals who may be working in the curriculum, delivering services centrally, running skills awards and/or providing workshops and advice and guidance.
    • Graduate dress code: How undergraduates are planning to use hair, clothes and make-up to smooth their transition to the workplace

      Cutts, Beth; Hooley, Tristram; Yates, Julia; University of Derby; University of Derby; University of East London (2015-08-01)
      This article explores the relationship between students’ identities, their ideas about professional appearance and their anticipated transition to the world of work. It is based on a series of semi-structured interviews with 13 students from a vocationally-focused university in England. It was found that participants viewed clothing and appearance as an important aspect of their transition to the workplace. They believed that, if carefully handled, their appearance could help them to fit in and satisfy the expectations of employers, although some participants anticipated that this process of fitting in might compromise their identity and values. The article addresses students’ anticipated means of handling the tension between adapting to a new environment and ‘being themselves’. It is argued that the way this process is handled is intertwined with wider facets of identity – most notably those associated with gender.
    • Graduate gap years: Narratives of postponement in graduate employment transitions in England.

      Vigurs, Katy; Jones, Steven; Harris, Diane; Everitt, Julia; University of Derby (Routledge, 2018-07-26)
      For UK higher education students, the ‘gap year’ or ‘year out’ is historically conceptualised as an amassing of wider life experience, often overseas, during a twelve-month period between the completion of A-level studies and the first year of a university degree. However, in a recent comparative study, which saw interviews conducted in both 2014 and 2015 with final year undergraduate students (n74) from different social backgrounds, across two English universities (one Russell Group university and one Post-1992 university), the term ‘gap year’ was being re-appropriated to capture something different. The term was being used to describe a period following graduation in which graduands planned to take low-paid work or ‘ordinary’ jobs, take stock of their financial situation, and attempt to save money and/or repay urgent debt. A high proportion of students in the 2015 stage of the study (16/37) spoke of taking a graduate gap year, compared with 9/37 in 2014. It may be that the increasing costs of debt-based forms of higher education payment coinciding with growing precarious employment has contributed to this situation. By borrowing the term gap year to describe a new and different phenomenon, some of the student interviewees may be legitimising the predicament in which they find themselves. This chapter explores the experiences of students who spoke of taking a graduate gap year. It examines the different roles of a graduate gap year and discusses wider implications for unequal graduate outcomes.
    • Great Expectations: youth transitions in troubled times

      Atkins, Liz; Northumbria University (BERA, 01/09/2014)
      This paper draws on an empirical study conducted in the UK to explore some of the issues surrounding young people on the lowest level VET programmes and make suggestions about ways in which the learner experience at this level might be enhanced. UK policy perception of young people undertaking low level VET programmes in Further Education (FE) colleges tends to characterise them within a deficit model of social exclusion, disaffectionand disengagement(Colley, 2003:169). Many have special educational needs (Atkins, 2013a). They have been the focus of multiple initiatives in both the context of the New Labour 14-19 agenda, and more recently in the Coalition governments response to the Wolf Review of Vocational Education (2011). These initiatives have largely consisted of the provision of routes through a range of VET opportunities, allegedly to enable young people to engage with the knowledgesociety (Bathmaker, 2005). This paper problematises these notions of opportunity, drawing on the little storiesof four young people to argue that the rhetoric which permeates Government documents fails to consider the significance of young peoples social and educational positioning. Finally, the paper considers the implications of these issues in terms of future practice, policy and research in the UK context.
    • Greater expectations of graduate futures? A comparative analysis of the views of the last generation of lower-fees undergraduates and the first generation of higher-fees undergraduates at two English universities.

      Vigurs, Katy; Jones, Steven; Harris, Diane (Society for Research into Higher Education, 2016-02-01)
      Student finance in UK higher education (HE) has been radically reformed over the past twenty years and the changes in student finance policies have been the focus for a growing body of education research (see for example, Bowl and Hughes, 2014; Bachan, 2014; Wakeling and Jefferies, 2013; Wilkins et al., 2012; Dearden et al., 2011; Moore et al., 2011; McCaig, 2010; Callender and Jackson, 2008). The majority of these existing studies, however, focus on the impact of differing tuition fee levels on students’ enrolment behaviour and the beginning of students’ HE careers. There is little research that has investigated how the most recent increase in tuition fees and changes to student loans, under the 2012 student finance system, have affected the views of graduands (university students who are about to graduate) and their approaches toward their graduate futures. This scoping study has been developed to start to address this gap in knowledge and understanding. In 2014, prior to the SRHE research award, the research team produced a unique qualitative baseline of the views of a sample of undergraduate students who were graduating in the summer of 2014. These graduands were part of the last cohort of students to have paid lower tuition fees and would therefore be graduating with less student debt. This follow-up study, funded by the SRHE, sought to generate new data in order to be able to compare the views, ambitions and experience of a sample of 2014 graduands with a sample of 2015 graduands.