Guest blog by Claire Newhouse, Head of Apprenticeships and Skills, Leeds Trinity University
Degree apprenticeships present an opportunity for universities to contribute directly towards improving productivity by increasing the number of people in local and regional economies with higher-level skills. They offer a new income stream for universities, but they also provide a means for diversifying HE entrants. The dual role for apprenticeships, as a mechanism for boosting productivity and enhancing social mobility, is not without tension, although it can, at times, be taken for granted by government.
Alongside the Research Excellence Framework (REF) that assesses research, and a Teaching Excellence and Student Outcomes Framework (TEF) that measures teaching we are now gearing up for the Knowledge Excellence Framework (KEF), which as you would expect will examine knowledge excellence. Yesterday’s announcement regarding the KEF pilots, of which the University of Sheffield will be one of the first participants, presents a timely opportunity to examine the broader context surrounding the KEF, and its linkages with other initiatives.
Guest blog by Professor Tim Thornton, Deputy Vice-Chancellor at the University of Huddersfield
One of the key strengths of the Leeds City Region is its unique concentration of world-class universities, and the diverse contributions that each makes towards the higher-level skills and innovation agendas. As part of the wider Yorkshire region, Leeds City Region can rightly-claim to be a ‘skills magnet’, which is able to attract new forms of inward investment and act as a seedbed for regeneration and growth.