Background to SCQF College Ambassador programme
The College Ambassador Programme aims to encourage colleges to engage with the SCQF in a range of different ways to raise awareness and understanding of the Framework among a wider audience. This will enable college staff to cascade their knowledge of the benefits of the Framework and credit rating across the college with the full support of the SCQF Partnership Executive Team.
It is anticipated that the programme will maximise the impact of the Framework, ensuring that it is perceived as a vital tool for progression; facilitating Senior Phase learning pathways and supporting the aims of the Developing the Young Workforce agenda. It will also ensure that the benefits of the Framework are being communicated to staff and learners right across the college landscape.
Background to the College
Inverness College UHI is one of the largest partners of the University of the Highlands and Islands, a partnership comprising 13 colleges and research institutions.
Inverness College UHI is the UK's leading tertiary education provider, which makes the college different. It offers the complete learner journey, a universal, all-encompassing experience. As such, it is able to offer qualifications across the entire SCQF Framework.
Inverness College UHI delivers an extensive schools programme for senior phase pupils which encompasses Further Education programmes including Skills for Work and Foundation Apprenticeships; Higher Education provision including HNCs and degree programmes. It offers a unique pathway for school pupils to engage with the college throughout their entire learner journey from engagement in a school’s programme through to postgraduate research activity.
Can you tell us about one way in which the college has successfully used the SCQF?
Inverness College has been utilising the Framework to credit rate programmes. These opportunities have arisen from the close relationships with local schools and the local authority. The process of credit rating is relatively new in the College and has resulted in it building staff capacity and confidence to benefit staff and building upon the existing partnerships with local schools and the community.
Inverness College UHI has recently credit rated a number of programmes which had previously been offered to senior phase students both in school and within the wider community. Credit rating these programmes means they have been allocated an SCQF level and SCQF credit points so the learners on these programmes this year at Nairn Academy and Highlife Highland will benefit from formal certification with SCQF level and SCQF credit points. It is hoped that they will be rolled out to other local schools in future years.
And what have the benefits been for learners, the college, partners and any other organisations/third party organisation?
The benefit of credit rating the programmes will mean that school pupils will then have formally recognised qualifications which acknowledge their wider achievements and which can aid them into future community volunteering opportunities, demonstrate commitment to employers or contribute to their next steps to learning. The college has increased its capacity in credit rating and built upon its relationships with the local authority and local schools.
Sarah Abenheimer, Depute Head teacher at Nairn Academy commented:
We have enjoyed working in partnership with Inverness College UHI to credit rated programmes that we were already delivering to formally recognise the wider achievements within the broader curriculum of our pupils. The “Seed to Sale” programme involved working with the Farmer Jones Academy which is being rolled out to small numbers this year. We hope that, many more of our pupils will undertake this and other similar courses from the Framework at a range of stages in school. The enhanced understanding of the flexibility of the SCQF Framework has sparked creativity across the school as teachers realise that they can write qualifications that can be credit rated for the skills our pupils need to succeed into further study, volunteering or employment.
As an SCQF College Ambassador what are your future plans for using and promoting the SCQF?
Lindsay Snodgrass, Director of Student Experience at IC UHI commented:
“We have been really pleased to work with Nairn Academy on this exciting project to help formally recognise the wider achievements of young people and to raise the profile of the SCQF. We plan to continue to promote the SCQF as part of the ongoing work we do with schools and will roll this project out to some of the other schools which we work with across the Highland Region. We feel this will help young people to develop a better understanding of the SCQF and support their transition into further or higher education. We are also considering how we can work with schools to train pupils in the senior school to be peer educators. This would support us in widening the awareness of the SCQF and the range of qualifications which young people can engage with.”