Due to the creation of materials for supporting foundation degrees in the SURF WBL project we were contacted by CWT the Coventry Chamber of Commerce Training firm. They were given our details from foundation degree forward, one of our project partners for both the WBL project and the WBL-Way project. It is good to know that our materials are being disseminated outside of our own dissemination days. They have been given access to our Moodle site and some learning objects have been emailed over to them based on their requests and discussions(Negotiated Learning, the Project, Mentoring handbook).
I organised a meeting looking at supporting them in creating a foundation degree in Leadership and Management based on REAL work based learning. This is very interesting for the SURF WBL-Way project as it has allowed me to see the very start of the process of what happens when someone expresses an interest in running a foundation degree. We had a very profitable meeting yesterday with the university (Rex), SURF (Richard), CWT, and foundation degree forward attending along with Mark and myself. It was interesting to see the very start as due to the project I have been working through student enrolement, validation and award setup but not this side. Hopefully some of the information we collected at this meeting can be used for guidance for other people wanting to set up foundation degrees, such as:
- Collect a list of existing internal training - including learning outcomes
- Collect a list of professional training employees have attended
- Think about the setup for the award (including do you want to embed existing training / x days + assessment = 15 credits?)
- What would be considered a critical success (for measuring against in the future) for the company
- Expected numbers of students
- Frequency of award being delivered
- Starting date of award
- Does the company want to deliver the courses or do they want the university to do it?
These are some of the basic points I have picked up on, and we are organising another meeting in May to carry on work in this area. It was surprising that they felt that they had to push their project back from being ASAP to being delivered next year as they perceived universities as being shut over the summer. We have been able to move their project forward much quicker than they hoped and may be something we need to consider on our portal is letting employers know that we are available to help them regardless of the time of year.