University degree ‘worth less than some apprenticeships’

A university degree is worth less than some apprenticeships, according to a survey which found that most employers would prefer to take on a “higher apprentice” than a graduate.graduation

Qualified apprentices scored four per cent higher on an “employability” scale than university graduates, and 15 per cent higher than the average of all other types of qualification.

People who had completed so-called “higher apprenticeships”, a new scheme which combines on-the-job training with education for school leavers, were considered 25 per cent more employable by a group of 500 employers.

Subjects in which the programme is available include Contact Centre Operations and “Work based learning for Practitioners” along with more traditional courses such as Agriculture and Life Sciences.

The survey was commissioned by the Department for Business as it launched an online guide to higher apprenticeships in 41 subjects which will be available to school leavers this year.

Employers rated on a scale of one to 10 how employable they considered people with a variety of different qualifications to be, with one being the least employable and 10 being the most.

People with higher, or degree-level, apprenticeships scored 7.98 overall while university graduates were ranked second highest with 7.58. The lowest scoring group was people with only GCSEs, who scored 5.14.

Higher apprenticeships allow participants to earn a wage while studying towards a degree-level qualification, and are offered by a range of businesses including management consultancies, public relations firms and science and engineering companies.

Careers advice for girls is weak – says Ofsted

An Ofsted study has found that young women are turning to ‘gender-stereotypical’ careers such as childcare, social work, hairdressing and beauty therapy as a result of weak careers advice in schools.

The Girls’ Career Aspirations study, conducted across 16 primary schools, 25 secondary schools and 13 colleges, found that most schools were not doing enough to promote the confidence, drive and ambition of girls to encourage them to challenge vocational stereotypes within the workplace.

Inspectors found that girls aged 11 to 14 had limited understanding of how choices about courses and careers influence pay and progression. “From an early age, the girls surveyed had held conventionally stereotypical views about jobs for men and women,” the report said. “They retained those views throughout their schooling despite being taught about equality of opportunity and knowing their rights to access any kind of future career.”

School records revealed that only 164 out of 1,725 pupils embarked on non-stereotypical work placements and of 200 female college students, only seven were considering engineering jobs and 17 wanted a science-related career.

Ofsted chief inspector Christine Gilbert said “Schools need to develop more opportunities for young women to meet professionals working in non-stereotypical roles, and to learn more about what the job entails through diverse work placements.”

Read news items in Guardian and CYPN

Nicki, Business Director, dbda

Careers advice is failing a generation of school leavers

New research commissioned by Future First into social mobility and careers advice, has found that a generation of young people is being let down as a result of bad careers advice at school.

The poll, conducted by YouGov, revealed that 64% of adults said their school careers advisors had not been important in helping advance their careers and only 13% of young people said their careers advice had been important in helping them access a job.

The research also reveals the concerns of 16-19 year old students – 70% of whom believe it will be difficult to gain access to a good career and 39% who said they don’t know anyone with a career they would like to do.

Jess Cordingly, managing director of Future First said, “With youth unemployment at a record high and social mobility stagnating, this research is a wake-up call that should lead to meaningful change in the provision of careers advice.” She added, “Access to role models is key to social mobility and we are at risk of limiting the prospects of 600,000 young people this year alone, by not providing credible careers advice.”

Read the full report at Future First.

Nicki, Business Director

Apprenticeships Week: Government backing

7-13 February is ‘Apprenticeships’ week which has received backing from Government –

‘Prime Minister David Cameron gives backing to Apprenticeships’

‘Cable urges more business to say ‘you’re hired’ to an apprentice’



Read more of this post

KPMG launches six-year training scheme to turn school leavers into accountants

KPMG will pay the tuition fees of up to 100 school leavers joining its new degree programme this September.

KPMG launches six-year training scheme to turn school leavers into accountants

Within a few years, the company hopes to recruit more than 400 school leavers annually.
The accounting giant said the scheme was a “blueprint” for employers to support teenagers faced with rising fees, while helping to devise a vocational course relevant to the world of work. Read more of this post

Pearson/Edexcel – Jamie’s Cooking Skills

Pearson/Edexcel – Jamie’s Cooking Skills (Home Cooking Skills qualification)

  • Site supports the Home Cooking Skills qualification
  • Qualification profile:
    • Consists of two single unit BTEC qualifications at Level 1 and Level 2
    • Both qualifications are fully funded on the QCF and contribute to Performance Points
    • Free online Teacher Support Materials accompany the course. They have been designed with teacher-ease in mind. They are user-friendly enough for those teachers without a home economics qualification to be able to teach, while at the same time providing exciting content for more experienced teachers and those who already have a good knowledge of food and cooking.
    • Includes printable recipes, skills-based videos, activity sheets, facts sheets, learner records, feedback and gallery.
    • This fulfilled a need to engage young people with the subject and is a good fit for a qualification and Jamie’s altruistic interests. Jamie’s mission was to focus on cooking, but the question begs the transference of elements of his empire to other subject areas e.g. business skills, buying and selling, public/media relations, people, entrepreneurialism.

Also check out: Money and Finance Skills – developed in partnership with Nationwide Building Society using the free, award winning  resources.

Source: BETT Show 2011

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