The Association of Colleges award celebrates leading lights in the further education (FE) sector effectively using digital technology to improve the learner experience.
Jisc and the Association of Colleges (AoC) are proud to announce Heart of Worcestershire College, USP College and Activate Learning as the finalists for the Jisc-sponsored ‘effective use of digital technology in FE’ Beacon Award.
This year’s finalists have been tasked with developing innovative solutions to real world problems affecting the FE and skills sector. These solutions include:
- Heart of Worcestershire College created a new blended learning programme that provides learners with the opportunity to hone important skills such as problem solving, communication and collaboration on a weekly basis through timetabled online learning.
- USP College in Essex introduced immersive teaching spaces to enable cross-campus, blended and hybrid teaching to address teacher shortages, student numbers and additional challenges.
- Activate Learning, which has colleges in Oxfordshire, Berkshire and Surrey, developed an online learning programme that provides continual feedback to aid development whilst simultaneously building strong relationships with learners.
Education Partnership North East (EPNE) and Barnsley College have also been commended in this category for their use of immersive spaces and digital environments.
Paul McKean, head of FE and skills at Jisc, said:
“Jisc is proud to sponsor this award and champion the innovative use of digital technology across the FE and skills sector. It is inspiring to see how this year’s finalists are using digital solutions to help solve real-world problems impacting learners, communities, and the wider world of work.
“Colleges are at the heart of communities and have a profound understanding of the issues impacting society and their learners. I look forward to hearing how the digital solutions proposed by these finalists bring about positive change to learning experiences.”
Mark White OBE DL, 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 and celebrates examples of colleges who champion and practice inclusive leadership.
“This is emerging as a unique and critical capability and the work of the finalists showcases how colleges can adapt to diverse and changing markets and nurture ideas and talent.”
Finalists will be assessed by sector specialists over the next few months to see how their solutions develop before a winner is announced in Spring 2023.