Last updated: 27.06.14

UK Further Education sector to get e-learning boost

The government’s response to the recommendations from the Further Education Learning Technology Action Group (FELTAG), published in June 2014, will form the basis of a hugely significant development for the e-learning industry.

Under the proposals a minimum of 10% of all publicly-funded programmes will be delivered online by 2015/16. In addition, there will be a minimum online threshold for the delivery of course content. The rate and threshold will be announced in the autumn.

The Skills Funding Agency (SFA) is to introduce a new field in the Individual Learner Record (ILR). This will be used by providers to record how much online and ‘blended’ delivery they are already involved in

This move by the government will allow education in the UK to meet the needs of today’s digital natives. It is also significant that the government is finally acknowledging the high levels of expertise that exist in UK companies that design and develop online training.

At Virtual College, we have been ‘trailblazing’ the use of technology in learning since 1995. During that time, we have engaged with 1.3m learners so we feel we have the pedigree to confirm that the government is making the right move.

We use technology to provide a range of online tools and resources for Apprenticeships that have helped reduce delivery costs’, improve efficiency and enhance quality. Apprentices today are comfortable using a smartphone or tablet to learn and Bring Your Own Device has facilitated this trend of online learning. The government is now encouraging the acceleration of this trend.

Virtual College’s introduction of the VOOC ‘Vocational Online Open Courses’ further demonstrates our understanding of how learners prefer to learn when given a choice. Learning is a life-long opportunity and now the government is recognising this by calling for new learning technologies to support this reality.

For further details of FELTAG’s recommendations and the Government’s response,