Activate Learning wins Jisc-sponsored Beacon Award

College group triumphs in the effective use of digital technology in further education (FE) category.

Activate Learning has won the 2023 Association of Colleges (AoC) Beacon Award for effective use of digital technology, which is sponsored by Jisc, for supporting adult learners to study remotely. 

The college group, which spans three counties, identified the challenges of providing fair access to learning for adults studying alongside jobs and personal commitments, which can lead to high levels of attrition and low achievement rates.  

With the use of their learning philosophy, they developed an online programme that prioritises continual feedback to help learners develop and succeed at their own pace.  

Since implementing the programme, Activate Learning has seen improvements in GCSE pass rates and received positive feedback from learners who are benefitting from a more flexible way of working.  

Paul McKean, director of further education, skills and training at Jisc said: 

“Jisc has been a sponsor of the AoC Beacon Awards for over a decade. The effective use of digital technology category highlights the advances being made in digital transformation across the whole of the UK FE sector. 

“Activate Learning should be proud that their innovative use of digital technology is improving experiences for adult learners. For the UK to sustain a truly effective and agile workforce, everyone should have fair access to digital learning throughout their careers and beyond. 

“Congratulations to the well-deserving winners, and well done to the other finalists, USP College and Heart of Worcestershire College.” 

Mark White, Chair of AoC’s Charitable Trust said:  

“The AoC Beacon Awards showcase exactly why colleges are so important to every community and why people value them.  

“This award recognises examples of excellent practical teaching and learning. The work of the winning college shows how important colleges are in providing students with the necessary skills for the real world.”