Skills & Employability Review Issue 11


Check your inboxes! Issue 11 of the Skills & Employability Review is out now.

Happy New Year!

In this issue:
• FELTAG & EdTech In The 1920's
• FE Leaders React To Funding Cuts
• Our New Labour Market Infographic & much more

Read Issue 11 online >

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Previous Issues

  • Issue 10 - 5 steps to successful employability provision, highlights from the AoC conference and recommendations to boost engineering skills & training...
  • Issue 9 - Welcoming Paul Edsall, AELP comments on the big FE & skills challenges, 20 further education leaders to follower on twitter...
  • Issue 8 - What Do You Need To Know About New FE Funding Rules, Guidance On Skills For Growth & Our Latest Labour Market Infographic...

Issue 7 | Issue 6 | Issue 5 | Issue 4 | Issue 3 | Issue 2 | Issue 1

Tor Macleod 07:00

UK Employment Rate Rises To 72.1% (Infographic)

2014's first set of labour market statistics by the Office for National Statistics (ONS) show UK employment figures increasing to 72.1%. The comparable rate of unemployment decreased to 7.1%.

During June to August of 2013 there were 30.15 million people in employment in the UK, a growth of 450,000 from a year earlier.

Out latest labour market infographic gives an overview of the new employment and unemployment statistics. (view full size)

labour market jan 2014 sml

Read the full Labour Market Statisics report >

Our Previous Labour Market Infographics

December 2013November 2013October 2013September 2013 | July 2013 | June 2013  
May 2013April 2013 | March 2013 | February 2013

Like this Infographic? - copy the code below to share it on your website.

<a style="border: none;" title="UK Labour Market January 2014" href=""><img alt="Infographic UK Labour Market January 2014" src=""></a><br/>Infographic by <a title="Macleod Associates" href="">Macleod Associates</a>

Tor Macleod 10:39

FELTAG & EDTech In The 1920s?

Push Button education
Source: Paleofuture

Have you been following the FELTAG (Further Education Learning Action Group) conversation on Twitter?

FELTAG was set up by the UK Government to find out how the further education (FE) and skills sector could embrace learning technologies and have been asking FE professionals for their opinions.

There is no doubt that technology has the power to transform education from the way we teach, manage educational instructions, and design curriculum.

Every generation has its own new technologies that are supposed to change education forever. Current trends in the FE sector include MOOCs, big data, and the flipped classroom, but what would we be talking about 100 years ago?

In the 20's and 30's technologists predicted how the new inventions of radio and television would revolutionise the way we teach.

Predications of Blackboards Delivered Through TV & Push Button Education seem to somewhat foresee current trends in online to learning and responsive curriculum design.

Instead of sitting in classes and learning each subject from a particular teacher, schoolchildren will be able to learn individually from computers.”

Pupils would record attendance and answer questions by pushing buttons. Special machines would be "geared" for each individual student so he could advance as rapidly as his abilities warranted. Progress records, also kept by machine, would be periodically reviewed by skilled teachers, and personal help would be available when necessary.

Some predictions from the 1960's go on to anticipate how computers would eventually make schools virtually obsolete.

There could be no schools and no teachers. Schoolwork may not exist. Instead you will have to do homework, for you will learn everything at home using your home video computer. You'll learn a wide range of subjects quickly and at a time of day to suit you.

More fantastical and futuristic technology predictions envisioned a world where we would travel to our floating schools in pneumatic air pressure tubes and learn by plugging our brains directly into electronic books. I don't think that this is on the FELTAG discussion list just yet!

For more education technologies from the past read 15 Technologies That Were Supposed To Change Education

Follow the FELTAG conversation on Twitter using the hashtag #FELTAG

Tor Macleod 11:26

Labour Market Intelligence For A Responsive Curriculum

Today I am attending a NIACE and UKCES seminar on Planning Locally Using Labour Market Intelligence To Meet Skills Needs. 

There is a clear consensus that skills are the key to economic growth, but how do we ensure that we are delivering the right skills?


The challenge for further education and skills providers has been in designing a more responsive curriculum to meet local labour market needs.  As I have commented on in other blogs (An Agile And Responsive Curriculum For Colleges and The Missing Link Between Education & Employment) a demand responsive curriculum is dependent on:

  • Knowledge of local labour market needs
  • Anticipation of the future local skills agenda
  • Understanding of barriers to join-up and delivery
  • Flexibility in curriculum design and delivery

This seminar hopes to provide clarity on ways to accomplish this as well as providing an opportunity to share perspectives and challenges with others working in the sector.

With presentations and panel discussions featuring Tom Stannard (Director of Communications and Public Affairs) and Simon Beer, (Programme Manger) from NIACE, and Carol Stanfield, (Assistant Director) and Marc Bayliss (Senior Research Manager) at UKCES, as well as NICK Porter of LGA this promises to be an insightful day.

Find out more: Planning Locally Using Labour Market Statistics

Tor Macleod 10:57

Top 10 FE Blog Posts of 2013

It has been a busy year blogging about further education, education funding and education technology. To kick off the New Year I have put together a list of the most popular posts from 2013.

FE Leaders

1.Top 20 Further Education Leaders To Follow On Twitter

Figuring out who to follow on Twitter can take a bit of work, to make life a little bit easier we have compiled a list of the top people to follow in further education (with a few higher education pros thrown in too).


2. SFA To Pay Up To £900 Per Work Placement

The Skills Funding Agency (SFA) has announced funding rates from £500 to £900 for work placements within the Governments new traineeship programme.

Education Link

3. The Missing Link Between Education & Employment

As we prepare for the coming academic year the SFA and the Department for Business Innovation & Skills have commented on where the funding landscape is heading.


4. 5 Steps To Successful Employability Provision – Ofsted

A new best practice guide published by Ofsted examines how Halton Borough Council has developed outstanding employability provision.


Agile Further Education

5. An Agile and Responsive Curriculum For Colleges

Examining the challenges colleges faced in aligning their curriculum to business objectives, wholesale curriculum redesign and responding to employer, learner and labour market demands.


UK Education

6. Infographic: 18 Things To Know About Education In England

Take a closer look at education in the UK. Educations vs. unemployment, what does the public sector spend on education and how long do people stay in education and education?


Perkins Review

7. Perkins Review: 10 Recommendations To Boost Engineering Skills 7 Training

Professor John Perkins’ recent review of UK engineering skills examines the provision of engineers in the economy, offering recommendations to secure the talent pipeline.

UK Employment Stats

8. Infographic: UK Employment Rate 71.8%

The latest workforce statistics from Office for National Statistics show UK employment figures have risen to 71.8%.


UK Labour Market

9. Infographic: UK Employment Increases By 336,000

Latest labour market statistics from the ons show UK employment at 29.71million, 336,000 more than this time last year with 72,000 fewer unemployed.

UK Labour Market Infographic

10. Infographic: UK Labour Market April 2013

Unemployment increases by 70,000. Statistics issue by the ONS estimate the UK workforce from December 2012 to February 2013.


Tor Macleod 15:43


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