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Examining practice : the perceptions of learners and employers on a work-based Early Years Sector Endorsed Foundation Degree

This research investigates whether work-based learning facilitates the development of practical skills and theoretical insights by early years practitioners. Foundation degrees symbolise both an opportunity and a challenge. The opportunity relates to creating a new vocational qualification which has work-based learning central to its delivery, in attempting to meet the demands of a skilled workforce necessitated by a shifting economy. The challenge is to form workable and sustainable partnerships with employers, Higher Educational Institutes and Further Education Colleges in developing an integrated approach to work-based learning. This thesis reviews the economic arguments and motivations that have led to the establishment of Foundation degrees and despite qualification inflation and continuing budgetary constraints; they are viewed optimistically through the perceptions of employers, students and policy makers. This research uses a mixed method approach involving three Further Education Colleges, learners and employers drawing on data gathered from questionnaires and interviews to examine the role of the Early Years Sector Endorsed Foundation Degree with particular emphasis on the role of employers in facilitating work-based learning and work based assessments. The impact of factors such as pastoral support and the inclusion of study skills in building self-confidence and improving academic writing skills amongst students especially those who have taken a break from education or those who have had negative experiences at school are highlighted. This research analyses the issues faced by employers, learners and Further Education Colleges, in accommodating work-based learning and considers whether the Government needs to reassess the demands placed on the partnerships and reconsider a more supportive package in order to make it a viable and successful qualification.
Date January 2013
CreatorsJoshi, Urmi
ContributorsHall, Neil
PublisherUniversity of Greenwich
Source SetsEthos UK
Detected LanguageEnglish
TypeElectronic Thesis or Dissertation

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