This is a very brief selection of relevant web pages and resources available in PDF form, aimed those advising adults about work-based HE progression routes.
These sites provide information, guidelines for thinking through individual circumstances and needs and step-by-step checklists to help people to make decisions. However most sites will advise learners to do extensive research for themselves and to get some professional advice and guidance before making a choice.
- Climbing Frame
- Gov.uk “public services all in one place”
- Money Saving Expert
- Open University
- Lifelong Learning Networks (LLNs)
- Sector Skills Councils Careers site
- Student Finance England
- Excellence Gateway
- The Student Room
- Unionlearn learning and careers advice line
- Not going to Uni?
www.apprenticeships.org.uk – Working people are finding that an apprenticeship can be a stepping stone to higher level qualifications such as Foundation degrees, HNDs and degrees, all of which they can undertake in the workplace. There are also Higher Apprenticeships and apprenticeship places for adults and this site provides information about progression.
TUC – The TUC currently has funding to support apprentices through unions.
www.climbingframe.unionlearn.org.uk – This is a free website for Union Learning reps (ULRs) to help them in their role of supporting learners in the workplace. This has been designed to help ULRs to carry out their role effectively and to help to bring learning into the workplace. There is a Higher Learning theme on the Climbing Frame, and also themes about Personal and Professional Development, and Progression for Union Reps.
www.gov.uk – This website is a one-stop shop for most of the basic information carried on other sites. It provides simple but comprehensive information about learning and work and direct links to all of the other sites mentioned here. This includes links to careers advice services by telephone, email and face to face. It also provides access to search facilities for courses and providers, and to online application processes for courses and finance for study. It is very easy to use.
Follow the links to Education and Learning.
www.life-pilot.co.uk – Lifepilot is a website for adults based in the South West who may be considering higher learning. It provides information about preparing for study, finance and the application process, as well as information about local higher education institutions and courses.
www.moneysavingexpert.co.uk – Easy to understand tips and guides from the official task force can be downloaded here, which explain fees and funding for higher learning.
https://nationalcareersservice.direct.gov.uk/ – Advisers can refer people to this free national service delivered by telephone, face to face, and online. Its a free, impartial, confidential service which helps people to develop new skills, improve their prospects at work or change jobs. The website includes links to a course search, skills inventory, CV builder and job profiles.
www.open.ac.uk – The flexibility of OU courses makes them suitable for working people. In addition to degree courses, the OU offers Foundation degrees, CPD courses and higher level opportunities such as Masters courses and PGCEs. Free taster courses are available at www.open.edu/openlearn. The careers area of the website has a link to the windmills programme www.windmillsonline.co.uk which has a virtual careers coach and a careers fitness check, helpful for people in work who want to progress their career.
The work of the national network of LLNs finished in July 2011, but they have left a legacy of a range of regional and sectoral resources about vocational and work-based learning and progression to HE. Some of these may now be out of date but contain useful general resources. Use with care!
- Heart Yorkshire
- Lifelong Learning Networks National Website
- Find a Course/Find a Career – The Creative Way
- Creative Portal
- Learning Opportunities – South East LLNs
- Life Pilot – Western Vocational LLN
- Your Future East Midlands
- Linking London
- HE Route Planner
- Trans:it Yorkshire – Engineering
- Visaroute Lancashire
www.prospects.ac.uk/sectors- Most SSCs have a careers website, and include information about sectoral progression routes and pathways. Click on this link to find a list compiled by unionlearn of these web pages and direct links to the sites.
SSCs also have an important role in producing Labour Market Information. The NGRF (National Guidance Research Forum) website www.guidance-research.org/future-trends includes LMI pages for each sector, and an LMI learning module for advisers. Job market information can also be found on the National Careers Service website.
The SSCs also have a general website www.sscalliance.org.
www.practitioners.studentfinanceengland.co.uk – This is a practitioner site for advisers who can refer people to apply online to finance their studies.
Information for learners is available on the Gov.uk site, which also provides information and links for those eligible for other types of finance such as Career Development Loans. www.gov.uk/studentfinance
This is the website of the Learning and Skills Improvement Service (LSIS) who support the updating of this site. You can find resources for career development on the site including CPD modules. LSIS also provides free e-learning modules for advisers at www.leadershiplearning.org.uk where you can register free to do 14 IAG modules.
www.thestudentroom.co.uk – This is an online forum about all aspects of studying at HE level including an area with a focus on mature students, and current information about student finance.
www.ucas.ac.uk – Advisers can use this site to search for courses and refer people to apply online for university places. There is an adviser guide to finding the right course and clear information about helping people to apply. Potential learners can also undertake the Stamford Test, which matches interests and abilities to HE courses. There is a link from the homepage to www.unistats.com , which allows people to compare courses and institutions.
This is a website for learners who would prefer to do higher learning at work rather than run up a debt by going to college full time. It includes information about job and apprenticeship vacancies and about courses you can do at work. www.notgoingtouni.co.uk