Skillset Employer Engagement Map by pengxiang

VIEWS: 3 PAGES: 40

									Audio Visual Industries
  Engagement with
  FE Providers in the
    West Midlands




         ~~~




  Caroline Davis for
  Skillset Midlands
     March 2006
CONTENTS


INTRODUCTION                                                              p2

METHODOLOGY                                                               p3

LOCATION OF PROVIDER AND INDUSTRY SPREAD                                  p3

FINDINGS:     Part1: Provision                                            p4

              Part2: Industry Engagement – Nature and Range of Employer   p4
              Engagement

              Part3: Qualifications                                       p10

              Outline of Skillset’s work re 14-19 Specialised Diploma     p12

              Part4: Industry Engagement – The Way Forward                p13

CONCLUSION                                                                p15


Appendix A: Mediacove Profile                                             p17

Appendix B: Walsall College of Arts and Technology Profile                p21

Appendix C: South Birmingham College Profile                              p24

Appendix D: Henley College Profile                                        p26

Appendix E: Stratford-Upon-Avon College Profile                           p28


Appendix 1: Regional Further Education Audio Visual Related Provision     p30

Appendix 1: Contact details re Regional Industry Training Providers       p36

Appendix 2: Engaged Companies and Freelancers                             p37

Appendix 3: Glossary of terms                                             p39




                                         1
Skillset Employer Engagement Mapping Project: West Midlands

Introduction:

As the Sector Skills Council for the audio visual industries, Skillset has a vested
interest in the relationship between industry and education, and the extent to which
the two engage with each other to develop and deliver qualifications that incorporate
the skills and knowledge required or desired by employers.

There were two parts to the project. Firstly the mapping exercise and secondly to
develop a Further and Higher Education section on the regional pages of the Skillset
website which shows audio visual related provision by FE and HE institutions located
in the West Midlands with the objective of showcasing the range and provision in the
region. To view the results of this part of the project log on to
www.skillset.org/westmids

This mapping exercise looks at how FE providers within the West Midlands offering
qualifications relating to the sectors in our footprint engage with employers and
freelancers from the audiovisual industries. The aims of the exercise are as follows:

      to map the range and provision of courses related to the audiovisual sectors.

      to identify and map industry engagement as regards work related learning.

      to identify and map industry engagement as regards curriculum development.

      to identify areas of strength and good practice in relation to employer
       engagement that can be shared with other colleges and employers.

      to identify barriers to effective engagement and identify appropriate action
       which could be taken to overcome these barriers in order to improve industry
       engagement.

      to summarise additional regional industry training provision or informal
       learning networks which have good industry involvement.

      To gain any regional perspectives on Skillset’s work nationally in relation to
       developing the 14-19 Specialised Diploma, and to gain views on appropriate
       pathways for 14+ learners in relation to providers’ industry provision.

      to raise colleges’ awareness of Skillset’s work in relation to careers
       information, advice and guidance, National Occupational Standards etc.
       which will benefit their work in terms of curriculum content and development.

      To raise employers’ awareness of the range of FE provision on offer, and the
       number of opportunities available to positively engage with FE.

      Contact with Skillset will enable colleges to strengthen links with industry via
       Skillset’s industry panels and forums, and it will give them access to accurate
       labour market information, advice and guidance to assist their curriculum
       planning.




                                          2
Methodology:

Initially an email questionnaire was sent out to 23 providers and followed up with
further reminder emails and telephone interviews. 15 providers responded. Visits
were arranged to 6 institutions identified as proactively engaging with industry in
order to highlight good practice within the form of case studies. Further information
was gathered about their activities and facilities, and more in-depth discussion
regarding effective engagement took place. These providers are profiled in
Appendices A-E. Desk research was also undertaken to supplement the information
gathered via questionnaire and to fill any gaps.

The questionnaire asked providers for the following details:

1. Nature and range of provision

2. Industry engagement

   The nature and range of current employer engagement
   Good practice and highlights to illustrate and celebrate
   Companies and freelancers engaged – see Appendix 2.

3. Qualifications

   Specific qualifications which facilitate industry engagement
   Their views on appropriate pathways for 14+ learners towards their industry
    related provision
   Their comments and thoughts in relation to the proposed 14-19 Specialised
    Diploma.

4. Industry engagement – the way forward

   Perceived barriers to effective engagement
   Suggestions for action to improve or consolidate industry engagement.

Several themes recurred through the data collected and they will be outlined below
and summarised in the conclusion. The conclusion will also suggest priority areas for
new or continuing development.


Location of Provider and Industry Spread

The Skillset Census (2004) revealed that, excluding photo-imaging, there are three
main sub-sectors in the West Midlands region: broadcast TV, employing 1,080,
broadcast radio employing 1,170, and electronic games, employing 1,030. Photo-
imaging was excluded from the census but is known to have a large presence in the
West Midlands, and employs over 150,000 people nationwide. There are major
variations by sector in levels of freelancing, which largely reflect the national picture.
Specifically freelancing is most prevalent in independent production (61% of the
workforce), animation (53%), corporate production (50%) and post-production (45%).

The City of Birmingham tends to dominate the audiovisual industries in the West
Midlands, having the largest concentration of radio stations and interactive media
businesses as well as playing host to the BBC and ITV Central. There is, however, a
strong base of small independent production companies in the region and a good



                                            3
geographic spread of radio stations, including 26 commercial stations. There are over
160 interactive media businesses operating in the region, a growing animation sector
in Birmingham, Telford and Wolverhampton and a cluster of games companies in
and around Coventry, Warwick and Leamington Spa.

As with the national picture, the audiovisual industries in the West Midlands are
dominated by very small units, with 91% having a workforce of fewer than five and
99% employing fewer than 25.

Further information on regional audiovisual activity can be found in Skillset’s
Regional Strategy and Collaborative Action Plan for the West Midlands which can be
found on the West Midlands pages of our website… www.skillset.org/westmids


Findings

Part 1. Provision

An up to date list of qualifications provided by FE institutions in the West Midlands is
provided in Appendix 1.

Part 2. Industry Engagement

Nature and range of employer engagement

The table below refers to the 15 providers who responded. The total number shows
the number of providers engaged in that particular activity.

Nature and range                                            Total no.
Guest speakers                                              13
Work placements for students/work based learning            12
Lecturer placements in company                              2
Curriculum development/contribution                         7
Sponsorship – regular or one off competitions               5
Setting briefs and assessing projects                       12
Use of equipment/facilities (one or two way)                9
Other                                                       4

Respondents were asked to give further details of the relationships and activities
identified in this table, citing examples of good practice and highlights to illustrate and
celebrate.

Our research findings clearly indicated that the nature of industry engagement could
be divided into two categories:

       A. Engagement which relates to meeting the needs of individual course
       requirements in terms of work related learning.

       B. Engagement with industry on a wider scale which relates to strategic policy
       and long-term development plans.

The examples demonstrating good practice and highlights are listed below according
to these two categories.




                                            4
A. Engagement which relates to meeting the needs of individual course
requirements in terms of work-related learning:

1. Work experience placements/work-based learning

    i. Armoris Films is a production company based within Tamworth and Lichfield
       College’s School of Art. Specialising in corporate, educational and training
       films Armoris offers HND Media (Moving Image) students the opportunity of
       gaining high quality placements in preparation for employment in the real
       world.

   ii. The HND in Graphic Design at Solihull College has a regular work placement
       arrangement with Switch Designs, a local design company, placing all
       students on a two week placement. One student gained full-time employment
       in the first year of the placement operating. The HND in Photography has
       placed students in a variety of work settings.

   iii. Wolverhampton College has historically enjoyed an excellent working
        relationship with employers in the newspaper sector. The full-time NCTJ
        course arranges work experience placements for students alongside their
        college NCTJ course. Employers receive regular reports from the College on
        learners’ progress.

  iv. Students at South Birmingham College go for work experience with local
      employers, eg Galaxy FM commercial radio station, and are actively
      encouraged to do voluntary work. Local contacts are, for example the local
      BBC, and BRMB radio.

   v. BBC Radio WM provides work placements to students from CSV Media, a
      regional industry training provider (see Appendix 1).

  vi. Sandwell College photography department has links with local and national
      employers, eg Calumet, BBC Mailbox and freelance photographers. Students
      are encouraged to network with industry to either get some commercial work
      or work experience.

  vii. WCRT (Wolverhampton Community Radio Training) provides 24/7 radio
       programming for Wolverhampton College’s radio station and provides
       valuable work-based learning opportunities for Mediacove students.

  viii. Walsall College has engaged with a number of employers and aims to secure
        work experience placements for HND students that can be linked in with
        project briefs.

  ix. The Mediacove engages with a number of employers for work experience
      opportunities, for example Connect PR, Rainmaker, Express and Star, MAS
      Records.




                                         5
2. Setting briefs and assessing projects:

Working with external clients on briefs/commissioned work

    i. HND students at Stratford-upon-Avon College have set up their own
       production company called Nines Company, which has been commissioned
       to produce audio visual products for various organisations

   ii. Sandwell College was commissioned to produce a CD-Rom of images
       comprising examples of their photographic work, to be displayed at the local
       Learning Skills Council offices. Projects such as these give photo-imaging
       students the opportunity to work in the real world whilst extending their
       portfolios.

   iii. Mediacove now has its own commissioning agency – Mediacove Productions
        – producing promotional DVDs. This came about through a project with
        Education Business Partnerships and has brought in revenue as well as
        giving students real DVD/Video projects to work on.

   iv. Students at Henley College on the National Diploma Courses in Moving
       Image, E-Media and Photography were last year commissioned to produce a
       promotional DVD for Coventry Sports Foundation.

   v. BBC Warwickshire and Coventry have commissioned students at Stratford-
      upon-Avon College to make an ongoing documentary for them and this is now
      being shown on the channel.

Working alongside Industry professionals - setting projects/ involvement in projects/
mentoring/ in-house and externally

    i. National Diploma in Media students at Halesowen College worked with
       Birmingham based film director Sarah Walker who set a project for students,
       negotiated proposals and assisted with production and post production.

   ii. Maverick TV mentored CSV Media students to produce ‘3 Minute Wonders’
       series for Channel 4. A BBC producer from BBC local TV has worked with
       students to create content for Midlands Local TV pilot. The work produced so
       far will be raised from interactive TV to Midlands Today to ensure maximum
       promotion for students’ work.

   iii. National Diploma Media students at Stratford-upon-Avon College, working
        alongside industry professionals, undertake two days of live programming
        from the College’s TV studio. This work is broadcast across the college. A
        highlight this year was ‘Stars in Their Eyes, College Special.’ Students had
        been to see Stars in Their Eyes being made in Nottingham and following their
        own version of the programme the tapes were sent away and commented
        upon by the professional production team in Nottingham.

   iv. Students at South Birmingham College benefit from the College’s 375 seat
       multi purpose auditorium theatre which is used by outside agencies on a
       regular basis. Students are, for example, involved in providing in-house sound
       and lights and preparing the stage for live broadcasts, eg. working alongside
       industry professionals to broadcast the Ed Doolan Show, BBC Radio West
       Midlands and Radio One Extra.



                                          6
   v. Last year South Birmingham College held a Pop Idol competition. Performing
      Arts students performed, music technology students were responsible for
      sound, and media students filmed, working alongside industry professionals
      hired in from Carlton TV.

   vi. One student from the HND Media (Production and Audio Pathways) at South
       Birmingham College was actively involved in filming live-aid in Birmingham
       City centre in 2005. Since then he has received the BBC 5 Star award.


Competitions

    i. Local radio station Bear radio asked Stratford-upon-Avon College to launch
       ‘Jock Idol’, a competition to find new presenters, which involved three of their
       BTEC National Diploma students reaching the final. To decide the overall
       winner, students had to co-present alongside a regular DJ.

   ii. Students on photo-imaging courses at Sandwell College are encouraged to
       enter competitions. Last year one of the students came runner up in a
       national competition set by ICI National. Students also hold an end of year
       competition to showcase their work, for example at the City Space Gallery.

   iii. Tamworth and Lichfield College students on the HND in Media – Moving
        Image are encouraged to enter their films into one of the many national
        festivals held throughout the year. In 2005 a short film ‘’Writer’s Block’’
        produced by one of the second year students, was nominated and highly
        commended at the Blink Film Festival. In October the student produced
        feature film ‘’Dead Trees’’ was a winner in the student non-factual category of
        the Royal Television Society Awards.

   iv. Students from the HND in Media/Photography at Stoke College have been
       nominated for the prestigious national Tom Gowar award and the ICI
       Imagedata digital photographer of the year. During the last eight years
       students on the course have been nominated six times for the for the Royal
       Television Society Student Awards, winning outright on two occasions and
       also winning best overall student production in 2002.

   v. Students on North East Worcestershire (NEW) College media courses are
      encouraged to enter national competitions and have been award nominees
      and winners.


B. Engagement with industry on a wider scale which relates to strategic policy
and long-term development plans

1. Working in partnerships and networking:

Walsall College of Arts and Technology
Employer engagement is central to Walsall College’s strategy and is integrated
across the curriculum as part of the College’s long-term development plan. The
College has training partnerships with both local and national companies and through
sponsorship and investment in resources from key organisations, the college serves
as a centre for best practice, providing existing employees with industry standard
training and skills development through vocational qualifications.



                                           7
The introduction of specialist Academies at Walsall College extends the College’s
industry collaboration. The Apple Academy was launched in February 2006. It is the
most up to date centre for Apple within a 50 mile radius, with a brand new Apple Mac
suite and the latest multi-media software packages. The Academy’s learning
environment gives ‘real world’ experiences to students ensuring the delivery of high
quality, industry recognised qualifications. The Academy is operated in partnership
with Soho Editors Training, the largest Apple ‘pro-app’ training provider in Europe,
and will be a gateway for learning and skills development in a rapidly evolving
industry.

Examples or areas of good practice include:

   Links with Screen West Midlands over training of freelancers
   Involvement with Film Birmingham in efforts to attract media companies to the
    West Midlands, and encourage collaboration between freelancers
   Corporate clients: BBC, TV Network, Maverick TV and large number of SME’s
   All Academy staff have been placed into industry for up-dating training
   Looking at further developing partnerships with industry
   Networking through, eg involvement with Employers Forums
   Hosting open days and inviting employers in to showcase resources/facilities.


The Media Centre of Vocational Excellence (CoVE)
City of Wolverhampton College and Sandwell College have been granted Centre of
excellence status for the creative industries. The Mediacove centre forms a Black
Country learning hub and is part of a £100 million government programme designed
to foster high quality training and education in specialist areas. The Mediacove has
developed excellent links with employers in the music and media industry.

Examples or areas of good practice include:

   The Mediacove Employers Forum has developed into a strong network of around
    150 individuals and companies engaged in the Media industries in the Black
    Country. The Forum meets on a regular basis and is comprised of all the
    Mediacove areas.
   The Forum meetings have given members the opportunity to gain a real
    understanding of the extensive media facilities and training courses available in
    the region with presentations, displays and demonstrations.
   The Forum enables the Mediacove to consult employers regularly and frequently
    on their needs and to keep up to date with current and possible future business
    needs. This has led to plans for a short course in business start-up for creative
    industry businesses.
   The Mediacove fosters partnerships with other media providers and trainers, for
    example the Light House is a partner training facility in Wolverhampton and
    provides specialised animation tuition for the National Diploma Media Production
    course, as well as work experience.
   Building relationships with employers which can lead to sponsorships and
    donations. Beacon radio and Midlands News have sponsored courses. Ilford
    Imaging donated a high-eng digital printer to Sandwell College. Under this
    partnership agreement students were able to use state-of-the-art equipment and
    in return the Photography studio was used by the company to demonstrate that
    particular piece of equipment to its potential customers.




                                          8
Henley College
 Henley College Coventry is currently involved in a bid, together with the
   University of Warwick and Coventry University, to become a Serious Games
   Institute.

   The College would provide vocational training for people wishing to start a career
    in Games Development, and offer short updating courses. The College is
    currently collaborating with games developers in the region and would go on to
    offer Business Skills training to these companies. This in turn could lead to better
    engagement, including, for example, sponsorship deals and guest speakers.

   The College is also involved in a project to develop NVQs in Games
    Development and are currently in talks with Coventry University over this.

2. Curriculum design, development and delivery:

Stratford-upon-Avon College
 National Diploma Media, HND Media and FD (Foundation Degree) Media have all
   been developed in discussion with local and national employers.
 The Foundation Degree in Media has recently been written in conjunction with
   employers. The modules have been designed to reflect the balance of academic
   rigour whilst providing the skills needed for progression onto the BA (Hons) Top
   Up year or to employment within the Industry.
 Employers‘ views are sought in course planning. Chris Wood, MD for Ragdoll,
   has discussed the need for animators and this has been built into the delivery of
   programmes for 2006-7.
 The Head of School Creative and Cultural Studies, attends Screen West
   Midlands events, as well as national, industry events to ensure that courses are
   updated and adapted to fit industry imperatives.

Henley College
 Employers have been involved in the curriculum design for the Foundation
   Degree in Games Development with the aim of building on work-based projects
   and meeting the needs of employers by turning out students who are multiskilled.

Warwickshire College
 Art Director from Codemaster acting as external verifier for Visual
  Communications course.
 Codemaster and Aqua Pacific had input into the modules, software and platforms
  chosen when setting up the National Diploma Media Games Development.
  course.

Halesowen College
 The college has made links with the production company Underdog Productions
   over the development of the proposed Foundation Degree. Links have also been
   made with artist Ben Neal from Maggothouse, a Birmingham based creative
   collective and software designers.

Mediacove
 The Foundation Degree in Broadcast Journalism was designed in consultation
  with employers with the aim of equipping graduates with a broad range of
  technical skills and the knowledge necessary to operate within the broadcast
  journalism industry. The course was designed with shared and flexible modes of



                                           9
    delivery in mind. For example there is on-site delivery of the module on Radio
    Studio Production at the college radio station WCR 1350.

   The Journalism NCTJ was designed for trainee journalists in consultation with
    employers.

   The Mediacove and employers have identified a need for tailored qualifications
    which could be delivered in separate modules, for example highly skill-specific
    courses to offer graduates or post-graduates who want to specialise in a
    particular area.


Walsall College
The Apple Academy at Walsall College is offering highly specialised courses which
can integrate within other courses, for example HNDs, in order to match industry
requirements.

There are therefore many examples of collaboration with industry over the design,
development and delivery of courses, from BTEC National Diplomas, to HNDs and
more recently FDs in particular. Shared and flexible modes of delivery were
suggested by two providers as a way forward, for example students going into
companies to undertake modules on-site (as given above in example of FD
Broadcast Journalism). One respondent felt it was necessary to promote BTEC
qualifications to employers and engage employers to deliver modules in order to give
recognition to these qualifications within the industry in the future. At present, it was
felt that potential employers to engage with, who are not involved with colleges or
education, may have a very limited understanding of the level or content of these
qualifications.


Part 3. Qualifications

1. Specific qualifications which facilitate employer engagement

BTEC

A majority of the respondents felt that the range of audio-visual courses from level 1-
4 all benefit from employer engagement, and cited BTEC qualifications, in particular
Higher National Diplomas/Certificates as qualifications which facilitate and lend
themselves to industry engagement, and prepare students for employment by
teaching good industry standard audio visual skills as well as fully developed IT and
Communication skills.

Foundation Degrees

There were mixed feelings towards Foundation Degrees (FDs). Some institutions
were very happy with HNDs and saw no benefit to offering a Foundation Degree and
one respondent aired views that FD’s had been rushed in and was wary of their
quality. Another respondent felt that work-based learning was too embedded in FD’s
which would make it difficult to deliver within his industry sector, photo-imaging,
which is largely made up of freelancers who can be difficult to engage with. Another
was looking into FDs but felt confused over how different they would be to HNDs.

The respondents involved in developing Foundation Degrees in collaboration with
industry (as previously mentioned), and designing them around the needs of


                                           10
employers, however, had a very positive outlook. They felt that the Framework for
Achievement built into FD’s aims to equip students with a set of skills for a particular
job role and therefore make them more employable, ie with excellent communication
skills as well as technical craft skills. Work-based learning is built into the course.

Further examples and comments given include:

   BTEC National Diploma in Media – skills in video and audio production.
   All HND courses as these focus on graduate employment and involvement of
    local companies whilst students are on the programme.
   HNDs are very grounded courses and give students a realistic education based
    training.
   HNDs balance the academic side with the needs of industry and teaches industry
    specific skills.
   National Diploma Media unit 6 necessitates engagement and partnership with
    industry
   A low percentage of people leaving media courses actually get a job in the
    industry as it is so competitive. The BTEC Media courses teach transferable skills
    which make students generally more employable.
   Edexcel HND Media programme is strongly vocational and was devised in
    collaboration with industry.
   City & Guilds Diploma in media techniques 7501 – both full diploma and single
    units allow for focused short courses
   FD’s in Media; Games Development and Broadcast Journalism; Journalism NCTJ
    (as previously mentioned)


2. Views on appropriate pathways for 14+ learners towards their industry
related provision

Various comments were given, as well as examples of current practice with regard to
14+ provision:

   Stratford-upon-Avon College has 14-16 year old SWIFT Programme (South
    Warwickshire Initiative for Training) students attending one day a week under the
    gifted and talented scheme to study the First Diploma in Media. These students
    are able to pursue an industry focused course whilst at the same time taking
    between eight and ten GCSEs. Six of these students are part of the Young
    Apprentices Scheme. The scheme at Stratford was deemed to be ‘exceptional’ in
    a recent Ofsted inspection (February 2006) due to the college’s partnership with
    the RSC. The provider commented that the SWIFT model shows the way in
    which academic rigour and vocational skills can be combined to provide students
    with a course that fully motivates them and in which they can succeed.
   Walsall College offer media ‘taster days’, and the Apple Academy run ‘Twilight
    Sessions’ with school pupils (outside of school hours) and showcase their work
    with the aim of encouraging awareness of vocational courses.
   Both South Birmingham College and Tamworth and Lichfield College are in their
    first year of offering the BTEC First Diploma in Media to 14-16 year olds (two half-
    days a week). The aim is to focus provision on 14+ to encourage vocational
    routes by linking in with schools. Both providers stated that the obvious
    progression would be the BTEC National Diploma. Students could then progress
    all the way through to a HND course in one establishment.




                                           11
One respondent felt that there was insufficient focus in the industry or preparation of
the topic for 14+ in preparation for 16+ education. Another felt that any such
pathways will depend on integrated liaison between schools, colleges and
employers. Another suggested working with schools to provide media-related
workshops around the curriculum to engage learners to develop their skills.


3. Comments in relation to the proposed 14-19 Specialised Diploma

One respondent gave a cautiously positive comment – that it was a sound idea if
there was genuine progression with the diploma. A number of respondents didn’t see
the need for it as they were happy with the current provision. Some respondents
either didn’t comment at all, or stated that they had insufficient information to
comment effectively and were adopting a ‘wait and see’ attitude. However, common
themes occurred amongst those who did reply:

   Concerns that another new qualification in a crowded market place could impact
    on current 16-19 year old provision as there is a finite number of students.
    Confusion as to how it will fit alongside other qualifications.
   Perceived problem with regard to engaging with employers over work-related
    learning element in terms of credibility of 14 year olds. Employers in the creative
    industries require people to have a certain level of maturity and skills which is not
    found in the average 14 year old.
   Concern that it could raise hopes and expectations amongst young people
    regarding media-related jobs in an already small and competitive industry.
   Concerns that it will confuse employers already struggling to understand the
    myriad of qualifications on offer.
   Adequate resources would be needed to develop partnership projects between
    employers and providers. One respondent suggested working with a national
    partner for schools and youth engagement such as Connexions.


Outline of Skillset’s work on the 14-19 Specialised Diploma for Creative and
Media

The Government White Paper on 14-19 Education and Skills, published in February
2005, set out plans to reform the curriculum for 14-19 year olds in formal education.
A central part of these reforms will be the development of ‘Specialised Diplomas’ at
level 2 (equivalent 5 GCSEs in size and level). They will be developed in 14 ‘lines of
learning’, reflecting broad sectoral areas. Diplomas in the first 5 lines of learning will
be available for ‘first teaching’ in 2008 and by 2015 Diplomas in all 14 lines of
learning will be a national entitlement to every 14 to 19 year old in England.

Sector Skills Councils are leading on the development of the Specialised Diploma.
Skillset is the convening SSC for the Creative and Media line and is working in close
partnership with Creative and Cultural Skills and Skillfast-UK (for fashion design).
The Creative and Media Diploma will therefore relate to a broad range of sectors.
These will be grouped to form appropriate sector-orientated pathways within the main
learning programme. In order to ensure there is coherence for the learner, as well as
clear and appropriate progression routes through and beyond the Diploma.

In developing the Creative and Media Diploma, the principle aims are:




                                            12
       To create a credible and broad programme of experiential and applied
        learning in the context of Creative and Media
       To devise a programme that develops the essential skills and capabilities that
        meet employer needs, incorporating employer engagement in ways that
        enhance the applied work-oriented learning
       To ensure that there is clear progression into and beyond the Diploma, by
        defining clear progression routes and by meeting the entry requirements of
        higher education
       To provide a viable alternative to the existing curriculum at 14-19, giving more
        choice to young people and the opportunity to engage with learning in
        innovative and creative ways.

Stage 1 of the development work has involved consultation with stakeholders and
focused on the following key areas:

 Breadth in favour of specialisation
To what extent should the Diploma provide a broad programme of applied learning in
favour of occupation oriented specialisation?
 Employer Engagement
In what way and to what extent can employers engage with the development and
delivery of the Creative and Media Diploma?
 Work experience and work-related experience
How should the requirement for work experience be met and how can it add value to
the learning programme? (e.g. assessing generic skills as part of non sector specific
work experience).

Clearly the development process has some time to run and there will be more details
available after the consultation and research period leading up to June. Skillset will
provide information as to the progress of the Diploma on their website.


Part 4. Industry Engagement – the way forward

1. Barriers to effective industry engagement:

Common themes were apparent in response to this particular issue: the nature of the
industry which is operated by small companies and freelancers; traditional attitude of
industry towards further education colleges; time and resources. Time and resources
are perceived as a barrier to engagement for both industry and education.
Competition is also an issue as too many training providers (schools, FE colleges
etc) are trying to get involved with employer engagement. Examples of the barriers
cited by providers include:

   The nature of the industry, which is increasingly operated by small companies
    and freelancers, can make it difficult to engage with employers, particularly
    freelancers, due to issues around project deadlines, time constraints, and lack of
    continuity. Many small companies do not believe they have the resources to
    engage with the education sector.

   The negative perception of industry towards further education colleges as ‘ivory
    tower’ institutions which are unresponsive to their needs. One respondent felt
    there was still an attitude towards ‘medja’ studies but it was being slowly eroded
    away and hoped that as ex-students entered the workplace it will be recognised
    that they have usable skills and abilities that are an asset to the industry.



                                          13
   Some self-employed professionals may have the view that colleges are in
    competition with them over potential clients and therefore resist engaging. This is
    particularly evident in areas where there is already fierce competition in a small
    market place, for example in music production where recording studios can view
    colleges as a threat.

   College tutors engaged in teaching on full-time courses have very little time to
    devote to effective industry engagement. Tutors often rely on established
    contacts within the industry.

   One respondent cited that funding for Level 3 and 4 courses had been reduced
    and, in some cases, removed.

   Lack of available funding to offer flexible bespoke courses makes it difficult for
    some colleges to attract interest from industry. The City & Guilds radio provision
    course is no longer running at the Mediacove as funding is only available for the
    whole course, not a single unit within the full qualification. However, there is
    significant demand for accredited courses, and desire to take certain units
    amongst small businesses and individuals, for example within City & Guilds web
    design and animation courses.

   Health and safety and risk assessment issues can restrict opportunities for
    placements for students, especially regarding sole trader or micro enterprises.


2. Suggestions for action to improve or consolidate industry engagement

Common themes identified by providers in response to this question included looking
at strategic development and working in partnerships and networking. Suggestions
for action included:

   Integrate employer engagement across the curriculum as part of the college’s
    long-term development plan. Establish a corporate development team dedicated
    to engaging with business and industry.

   Look to working in partnerships with industry. Colleges promoting themselves in
    terms of resources and facilities they can offer to industry professionals in order
    to combine business opportunities with training opportunities. Invite employers in
    to showcase facilities/student work/courses etc. Promote colleges as working in
    partnership and not in competition.

   Promotion from agencies such as Skillset and the LSC highlighting the value
    these partnerships can provide.

   Look to proactively build relationships. Set up a Regional Employers Forum to
    address the particular needs of industry, to share information and practice around
    engagement issues, and to keep abreast of trends in the industry, for example by
    identifying skills shortages.

   Set up a regional Employer Engagement Group to co-ordinate engagement
    between education providers and industry regarding work-related learning. This
    would address the problem of employers being inundated with approaches from
    education providers.




                                          14
   Aim to develop avenues for self-funding, for example through setting up a
    production company.

   Offer specialised training courses which are flexible and responsive to the
    demands of employers

   Industrial updating of tutors, through involvement with projects, with corporate
    clients to establish credibility and contacts.

   Need commitment from college’s senior management and adequate provision of
    staff time and funding to enable partnerships to have a solid foundation.

   Discussions with local sector/awards body to investigate and embed industry
    needs with course delivery.

   Employ a centralised coordinator to liaise with employers, eg a work-based
    learning co-ordinator who has the time to devote to keeping the project alive and
    firefighting.

   Develop a showcase on-line site for the celebration of student work with industry.


Conclusion

A 66% response rate was achieved for the project and therefore the range of activity
illustrated in this report and in the provider profiles is indicative of the nature of
industry engagement across the region.

In terms of the nature and range of employer engagement relating to individual
course requirements it is clear that many providers are moving away from the
traditional work-experience placement and developing different, more creative ways
of engaging with employers based around, for example, setting briefs and project-
based work. In terms of engagement on a wider scale common themes included
looking at strategic development, and working in partnerships and networking.
Pathways into and through industry are therefore currently being addressed and
there are many examples of good practice across the region.

Providers are largely in agreement on concerns and issues for development, with
organisational planning and support and funding for staff and resources to develop
and sustain industry engagement being key issues. Looking at strategic development
and working in partnerships were largely cited as the way forward.

It is important to note that whilst industry engagement may need attention and
development in some areas, there is a high quality of education being provided in
audio visual related fields. Also the experience and expertise of provider staff who
contributed to the project is invaluable and Skillset Midlands hope to be able to work
with providers in the future to endeavour to address those issues which fall under our
remit for collaborative action.

We anticipate that priority areas, for example the development of the Creative and
Media Diploma, will continue to be debated and explored through mechanisms and
forums, such as our Regional Education Focus Group and encourage participation
from FE and HE providers.




                                          15
Finally, we will draw attention to the following areas for potential development that
were important to many providers and with which the Skillset Midlands team will
continue to engage over the coming months:

      Regional employer forums and networks:

   Skillset is committed, as stated in our West Midlands Collaborative Action Plan
   (which forms part of Skillset’s Sector Skills Agreement and gives details of priority
   areas of activity for Skillset in the region), to support and develop audio visual
   industry employer networks.

   We are currently reviewing the membership and structure of our own West
   Midlands Audio Visual Skills Industry Panel and will ensure that a broad range of
   employers, including those referenced in Appendix 2, will be invited to have input
   to the process and the resulting Industry Panel.

   We will also continue to foster links between our Industry Panel and our Regional
   Education Focus Group, a forum convened by Skillset Midlands, of FE, HE and
   industry training providers and representatives from statutory agencies involved
   with education and learning. The Group currently meets quarterly to share
   information and consult on education and training issues related to the audio
   visual industries.

      Understanding of and between industry and education:

   Skillset will continue to post case studies on the regional pages of our website,
   which will contribute to informing employers, freelancers and education and
   training providers as to each other’s key practices and needs. We will also
   endeavour to produce generic information on qualifications offered by regional
   providers in order to facilitate and speed up communication between potential
   partners.

      Liaison between industry and providers around work related learning:

   Skillset will share information and practice from its network of sector, regional and
   cross sector teams across the UK. We will continue to explore initiatives related
   to the development of mechanisms to facilitate or support communication
   between industry and West Midlands providers of education and training.
   Skillset will endeavour to participate in the development of models which could
   support delivery of services on a regional basis, and will draw attention to
   significant issues, as appropriate, through our strategic partnerships such as the
   Regional Local Learning and Skills Council Meeting for Digital and Media
   Industries and the Advantage West Midlands Screen Image and Sound Cluster
   Opportunities Group. Advantage West Midlands is the Regional Development
   Agency for the West Midlands.

THANK YOU to Peter Brady at Coventry and Warwickshire LSC for supporting the
project and to all respondents for their valuable contributions.

If you would like to discuss any areas of this report further then please contact:

Amy Thomas
Skillset Midlands Regional Manager
amyt@skillset.org



                                           16
Appendix A: Mediacove - profile

The Media Centre of Vocational Excellence (CoVE) is a project led by the City of
Wolverhampton College in partnership with Sandwell College.

City of Wolverhampton College and Sandwell College have been granted Centre of
Excellence status for the creative industries. The Mediacove centre forms a Black
Country learning hub and is part of a £100 million government programme designed
to foster high quality training and education in specialist areas. The Mediacove has
developed excellent links with employers in the music and media industry.

Facilities
State-of-the-art facilities:
 Lakeside Studios at the Smethwick Campus has professional multi-track studios,
   radio studios, TV and video facilities, using both analogue and digital technology.
 The photo-imaging section at the West Bromwich Campus operates from a
   dedicated suite of studios, computer labs and darkrooms.
 The journalism training area and new video production facilities, including state of
   the art digital video production kit at the Paget Road Campus.

Provision
A wide range of courses from introductory to degree levels, available part-time and
full-time, in a variety of disciplines including journalism, media, music, television,
multi-media, animation and photography.

Industry Engagement
 The Mediacove Employers Forum has developed into a strong network of around
   150 individuals and companies engaged in the Media industries in the Black
   Country. The Forum meets on a regular basis and is comprised of all the
   Mediacove areas.
 The Forum meetings have given members the opportunity to gain a real
   understanding of the extensive media facilities and training courses available in
   the region with presentations, displays and demonstrations.
 The Forum enables the Mediacove to consult employers regularly and frequently
   on their needs and to keep up to date with current and possible future business
   needs. This has led to plans for a short course in business start up for Creative
   Industry businesses.
 The Mediacove has acted as a catalyst for the development of new course
   provision and has consulted employers on curriculum design with regard to these
   courses, for example the Foundation Degree in Broadcast Journalism.
 The College has pioneered work in radio training running a weekly programme on
   BBC Radio WM since 1989 and holding a student radio licence since 1999.
   WCRT (Wolverhampton Community Radio Training) provides 24/7 radio
   programming for the college radio station as well as valuable work based learning
   opportunities for students.
 Mediacove now has its own commissioning agency – Mediacove Productions - to
   producing promotional DVDs. This came about through a project with Education
   Business Partnerships and has brought in revenue as well as giving students real
   DVD/Video projects to work on.
 The Mediacove fosters partnerships with other media providers and trainers, for
   example the Light House is a partner media training facility in Wolverhampton
   and provides specialised Animation tuition for the National Diploma Media
   Production course, as well as work experience.


                                           17
   Shared and flexible modes of delivery with employers and other providers is
    becoming available. For example on the Foundation Degree in Broadcast
    Journalism there is on-site delivery of the module on Radio Studio Production at
    the college radio station WCR1350.
   SPARK CI centre Science Park provides incubator units for new businesses, i.e.
    ex Mediacove students.
   The College has historically enjoyed an excellent working relationship with
    employers in the Newspaper sector. The full-time NCTJ course arranges work
    experience placements for students alongside their college NCTJ course.
    Employers receive regular reports from the college on learners’ progress, and
    vice versa.
   Building relationships with employers with can lead to sponsorship and donations.
    Beacon Radio and Midlands News have sponsored courses. Ilford donated a
    high-end digital printer to Sandwell College – this meant that the college premises
    were used by the company to demonstrate that particular piece of equipment to
    its potential customers.
   Examples of other employers engaged for work experience opportunities are
    Connect PR, Rainmaker – video Productions, Express and Star, MAS Records
    Kidderminster.
   Sandwell College was commissioned to produce a CD-Rom of images
    comprising examples of their photographic work, to be displayed at the Local
    Learning and Skills Council (LSC) offices. Projects such as these give photo-
    imaging students the opportunity to work in the real world whilst extending their
    portfolios. Other projects have included work for World Aids Day and Birmingham
    College of Food and Technology.
   Students on photo/digital imaging courses also hold an end of year competition to
    showcase their work, for example at the City Space Gallery.
   Students on photo-imaging courses are encouraged to enter competitions. Last
    year one of the students came runner up in a national competition set by ICI
    National.
   The photography studio has been a demonstration centre for Ilford Imaging
    system. Under this partnership agreement they demonstrated their facilities to
    potential clients, students were able to use state-of-the-art equipment, then after
    18 months the company sold the equipment to the college as it was out of date
    for them.
   The photography department has links with local and national employers, eg
    Calumet, BBC Mailbox and freelance photographers. Students are also
    encouraged to network with the industry to either get some commercial work or
    work experience.

Qualifications which lend themselves to Industry Engagement
 Foundation Degree in Broadcast journalism in particular as work-based learning
  is embedded. Also BTEC HNDs and HNCs. Also the Journalism NCTJ which was
  designed for trainee journalists. The Foundation Degree in Broadcast Journalism
  was designed in consultation with employers with the aim of equipping graduates
  with a broad range of technical skills and the knowledge necessary to operate
  within the broadcast journalism industry. Work-based learning is built into the
  course.
 The Mediacove and employers have identified a need for tailored qualifications
  which could be delivered in separate modules, for example highly skill-specific
  courses to offer graduates or post-graduates who want to specialise in a
  particular area.




                                          18
   The photography department looked into foundation degrees and decided to
    carry on with the HND due to the freelance nature of the work and the difficulties
    around engaging in terms of work-related learning.

Comments in relation to the proposed 14-19 Specialised Diploma
 Work experience in the traditional sense will be difficult to organise as employers
  in the creative industries require people to have a certain level of maturity and
  skills which is not found in the average 14 year old. This will make engagement
  difficult.
 Concern that it could raise hopes and expectations amongst young people
  regarding media-related jobs in an already small and competitive industry.
 Concerns that another new qualification in a crowded market place could impact
  on established courses as there is a finite number of students.
 Concerns that it will confuse employers already struggling to understand the
  myriad of current qualifications on offer.

Barriers to effective Industry Engagement
 The negative perception of industry towards education as (‘ivory-tower’)
   institutions which are unresponsive to their needs.
 Lack of available funding to offer flexible bespoke courses. City & Guilds radio
   provision course is no longer running because funding is only available for the
   whole course, not a single unit within the full qualification. However there is a
   significant demand for accredited courses, and desire to take certain units
   amongst small businesses and individuals, for example within City & Guilds Web
   Design and Animation courses.
 The nature of the industry i.e. made up predominantly of self-employed
   professionals can make it difficult to engage with employers as they are
   constantly running to project deadlines and too busy. The Photography
   department looked into developing a foundation degree but decided to carry on
   with the HND due to the difficulties around engaging in terms of work experience
   placements.
 Also self-employed professionals may have a view that colleges are in
   competition with them over potential clients and therefore resist engaging. In
   particular in areas where there is already fierce competition in a small market
   place, for example music production – recording studios can view Colleges as a
   threat.
 College tutors engaged in teaching on full-time courses have very little time to
   spend on being proactive regarding employer engagement.
 Lack of resources within College to finance employer engagement.

Suggestions for action to improve or consolidate Industry Engagement
 The Mediacove has identified a demand for new bespoke courses in the Black
   Country area and is currently devising and looking into implementing some
   specific Mediacove courses that meet the flexible demands of employers.
 Aim to further develop avenues for self-funding, eg through developing the
   commissioning agency.
 Within the Employers Forum address the particular needs of one aspect of the
   industry, eg photography, at each session.
 Ensure the chair of the meeting has a strong industry background.
 Invite employers in to showcase facilities/students work/courses etc.
 Wolverhampton College and Sandwell College are now developing the notion
   ‘employer engagement’ across the college. Concern raised that employee won’t
   have enough knowledge of all the different departments’ individual needs.



                                          19
   Keep abreast of trends in the industry, eg by identifying skills shortages (current
    demand for photoshop, digital imaging, radio and video editing training).
   Promote Colleges as training facilities which can work in partnership with industry
    and are not in competition with industry.




                                          20
Appendix B: Walsall College of Arts and Technology – Profile

Walsall College of Arts and Technology has an established reputation for academic
courses and vocational education. Employer Engagement is central to Walsall
College’s strategy and is integrated across the curriculum as part of the College’s
long-term development plan.

Walsall College has training partnerships with both local and national companies and
through sponsorship and investment in resources from key organisations, the
College serves as a centre for best practice, providing existing employees with
industry standard training and skills development through vocational qualifications.
Broadway is the College’s own corporate development team dedicated to engaging
with business and industry. The introduction of specialist Academies at Walsall
College extends the College’s industry collaboration.

Apple Academy - Facilities:
The Apple Academy was launched in February 2006. It has a brand new Apple Mac
suite and the latest multi-media software packages. The Academy’s learning
environment gives ‘real world’ experiences to students ensuring the delivery of high
quality, industry recognised qualifications. The Apple Academy will be a gateway for
learning and skills development in an industry that is rapidly evolving.

Apple Academy – Provision:
The Academy offers the opportunity to gain qualifications which are relevant to
creative industries and organisations with capabilities in creative arts, graphics,
editing, web design and multimedia.

The Apple Academy is operated in partnership with Soho Editors Training, the largest
Apple ‘pro-app’ training provider in Europe and the world’s premier post-production
talent agency.
Soho Editors Training @ Walsall College delivers:
 Access to potential funding schemes, for both individuals and companies
 Globally recognised qualifications from Apple, with certification to prove it
 SET trainers are Apple certified, with significant experience as post-production
    professionals
 Your own Mac G5 with dual screen technology on which to train
 Fully tailored and bespoke training available for all training requirements, from
    one-to-one tutorials to company-wide training solutions.

The School of Creative Arts - Facilities
The Art Studios and Computer Suites offer the very best training. The Media
department use professional equipment to prepare students for working in the
industry. Graphic design students have access to excellent Design Studios with
dedicated Apple Mac Computer Suites and ‘industry standard software for design’.

School of Creative Arts – Provision
Within graphic design, music and media departments - a range of BTEC First
Diplomas, BTEC National Diplomas, HNDs.




                                        21
Industry Engagement

Apple Academy
 Operated in partnership with Soho Editors Training.
 Run ‘Twilight Sessions’ with school pupils (outside of school time) and showcase
   their work. To encourage awareness of vocational courses.
 Links with Screen West Midlands over sponsoring training of freelancers.
 Involvement with Film Birmingham in efforts to attract media companies to the
   West Midlands, and encourage collaboration between freelancers.
 Corporate clients: BBC, TV Network, Maverick TV and large no of SMEs.
 All Academy staff have been placed into industry for up-dating training.
 Looking at working in partnerships with industry.
 Networking through, eg involvement with Employers Forums.
 Hosting open days and invite employers in to showcase resources/facilities the
   College/Academy has to offer.
 Offering highly specialised courses to integrate within eg, HNDs to match with
   industry requirements.

School of Creative Arts - Media department
 The media department give students industry style assignments.
 Guest speakers are secured by tutors.
 Tutors have contacts within their own specialisms, eg radio/TV/editing/marketing
   and promotions.
 The aim is to secure work experience placements and link this in with project
   briefs, particularly for second year HND students.
 The dept is currently concentrating on maintaining established contacts and
   developing new contacts.
 The dept is looking towards developing lecturer placements in companies, to
   work on projects, as a way of keeping up to date with a fast moving and ever
   evolving industry.
 The dept is looking into developing sponsorship from companies, eg for
   competitions. Soho Editors Training have already presented a Student of the
   Year Award.

Employers engaged for work experience: Central Independent Newspapers Limited;
Aquilla Post Production; Multicultural magazine; Kic fm; BDW; The farm; Mix Mag
Magazine; SixftSix; Maverick Television; Hotbed Media.

Barriers to effective Industry Engagement
 Need to overcome negative historical industry view of FE as out of date, non-
   proactive institutions unresponsive to the needs of industry.
 Reduced or removed funding for Level 3 and Level 4 courses.
 Film industry is underrepresented by large companies and whilst there are larger
   numbers of SME’s and freelancers it can be difficult to engage with them due to
   issues around deadlines, time constraints and lack of continuity.

Suggestions for action to improve or consolidate Industry Engagement
 Industrial updating of tutors, through involvement in projects, with corporate
   clients to establish credibility and contacts.
 Look to working in partnerships with industry/ proactively building relationships:
   ask employers what they need, assess how you can help them and be clear what
   you can offer them.
 Offer specialised training courses which are flexible and responsive.



                                        22
   Avoid cold calling.
   Integrate employer engagement across the curriculum as part of the College’s
    long-term development plan.
   Establish a corporate development team dedicated to engaging with business
    and industry.




                                       23
Appendix C: South Birmingham College - Profile

South Birmingham College is one of the Midlands’ largest colleges of Further
Education offering specialist provision in a broad range of professional, vocational
and academic qualifications.

Facilities
The new £17 million state-of-the-art centre at Digbeth, in the heart of the city, offers
superb accommodation and resources as well as unrivalled provision and facilities in
a wide range of courses including media and multimedia. Facilities include:
 375 seat multi purpose auditorium theatre, dance studio
 4 recording studios (Pro Tools, RADAR, Cubase, Logic), 6 rehearsal studios and
   4 music technology suites
 6 IT suites, 3 multimedia suites, 2 radio control rooms, 2 edit suites (with AVID
   editing machines), dedicated adrenaline suite.

Provision
Within media and multimedia: A range of BTEC First Diplomas, BTEC National
Certificates and Diplomas, and BTEC Higher National Diploma in Media (Production
and Audio Pathways) from sep 2006. Also NCFE Certificates (Video Production and
Digital Photography).

Industry Engagement
 Industry professionals, for example speakers from the Performing Rights Society
   and the Musicians Union, come in as guest speakers on a regular basis
 maintaining links with the local community, other educational establishments and
   industry through, for example the Employers Forum
 Applying for funding for specific projects, for example LSC funded project where
   bands were invited to apply to become a recording act for a year.
 Links with the Irish Centre regarding various projects, eg running Film Awards
   nights
 The auditorium is used by outside agencies on a regular basis, eg for concerts,
   and HND students are responsible for sound and light.
 The auditorium is an excellent promotional tool as it brings other agencies in as
   well as bringing in revenue.
 Last year the Department held a Pop Idol competition. Performing arts students
   auditioned, music technology students were responsible for sound, and media
   students filmed, working alongside industry professionals hired in from Carlton
   TV. This kind of cross-collaboration is used regularly for final major projects –
   another example is running a West End style production.
 BBC Question Time is broadcast from the auditorium – student involvement is
   through observation.
 Students are involved in providing in-house sound and lights and preparing the
   stage for live broadcasts, eg working alongside industry professionals to
   broadcast The Ed Doolan Show, BBC Radio West Midlands and Radio One
   Extra.
 Students gain work based learning through involvement with local projects. Last
   year they were involved in the launch of the Digital Birmingham Project.
 Students worked alongside BBC engineers to install ISDN line to the auditorium.
 Students go for work experience with local employers, eg Galaxy FM commercial
   radio station.
 Working in partnership with industry. For example, a company which produces
   corporate promotional videos offers students voice-over experience in return for
   credits on the Diploma course.


                                          24
   Students are actively encouraged to do voluntary work. Local contacts are, for
    example the local BBC, and BRMB Radio.

Qualifications which lend themselves to Industry Engagement
 Modules within the BTEC National Certificate/Diploma Media (Moving Image
   Production).
 HND courses in particular.
.
Pathways for 14+ learners
 Focusing provision on 14+ to encourage vocational routes by linking in with
   schools and offering the BTEC First Diploma to a 14-16 year olds group. Started
   this academic year.

Barriers to effective Industry Engagement
 The nature of the industry, which is largely governed by self-employment.

Suggestions for action to improve or consolidate Industry Engagement
 Promoting BTEC qualifications to employers and engaging employers to deliver
   modules as a way forward. Foe example students going into companies to
   undertake modules on-site. Engaging with employers in this way will give
   recognition to these qualifications within the industry in the future. At present,
   potential employers to engage with, who are not involved with colleges or
   education, may have a very limited understanding of the level or content of these
   qualifications.




Appendix D: Henley College - Profile

Henley College Coventry offers a wide range of Media and Multimedia courses.


                                         25
Facilities
The 120 full-time students benefit from excellent production facilities.
 A darkroom capable of working with 35mm film up to 8x10 large format.
 A professional photographic studio.
 A digital photography post-production and printing suite.
 A sound recording and editing suite with 24 track mixing desk and 8 track ADAT
   facility.
 Three high specification multimedia IT labs.
 12 MAC based video edit workstations.
 Broadcast standard video production and audio recording equipment.

Provision
Within art and design, media and multimedia departments – a range of BTEC
qualifications including Introductory Diplomas, First Diplomas, National Diplomas,
and HNDs. Also: Foundation Degree in Photography; Foundation Degree in Moving
Image and Multimedia. Looking towards developing a Foundation Degree in Games
Design.

Industry Engagement
 The College is currently involved in a joint bid, together with the University of
    Warwick and Coventry University, to become a Serious Games Institute.
The College would provide vocational training for people wishing to start a career in
Games Development, and offer short updating courses. The College is currently
collaborating with some games developers in the region and would go on to offer
Business Skills training to these companies. This in turn could lead to sponsorship
deals, guest speakers etc.
The college is also involved in a project to develop NVQs in Games Development
and are currently in talks with Coventry University over this.

 Working with external clients on live briefs.
Students on the National Diploma Courses in Moving Image, E-Media and
Photography were last year commissioned to produce a promotional DVD for an
environmental Project being run by the Coventry Sports Foundation.
The ND Photography students produced work which would form 3 slide shows while
the Moving image students produced 3 video pieces. Each of these demonstrated a
different part of the Environmental Project and were then compiled by the E-Media
students within a DVD with its own graphic elements and animations.
Working with external clients on live briefs has now for several years enabled
students to experience the demands of real deadlines and professional production
values. Whether it is working in partnership with the BBC, with local charities, the city
council or producing corporate and training products the students by the time they
finish their National Diploma have a real understanding of the skills required to
succeed in the media industries.

Qualifications which lend themselves to Industry Engagement
 BTEC National Diplomas and HNDs work well with external clients setting live
  briefs to high professional standards.

   Employers have been involved in the curriculum design for the Foundation
    Degree in Games Development with the aim of building on work-based projects.
    Foundation Degrees are currently being designed around the needs of employers
    with the aim of turning out students who are multiskilled. The Framework for
    Achievement built into Foundation Degrees aims to equip students with a set of


                                           26
   skills for a particular job role and therefore make them more employable., ie. with
   excellent communication skills and research skills as well as technical craft skills.

Pathways for 14+ learners
 The college currently offer media ‘taster’ days for ‘Gifted and Talented’ school
   pupils.

Comments on proposed 14-19 Specialised Diploma
 Possible problem with work-related learning element in terms of credibility of 14
  year olds within the industry, ie are they mature enough to contribute in a
  meaningful way?
 Concerns over the diploma impacting on current 16-19 year old provision within
  colleges.

Barriers to effective Industry Engagement
 There is only a finite number of employers in the region who are being
   approached by numerous schools and colleges and only have the capacity to
   commit to one college.
 Within the traditional work experience placement of eg two weeks it is difficult for
   students to contribute in an effective way as the industry is deadline driven.

Suggestions for action to improve or consolidate Industry Engagement
 Colleges promoting themselves in terms of resources and facilities they can offer
   to industry professionals and therefore working more in partnership with industry
   to combine business opportunities with training opportunities. For example, a
   production company came in recently to produce a music video and involved
   students in the project.
 Colleges looking more closely at becoming self-funding by starting up paying
   projects via their own production company.
 The College is currently in the process of setting up an Employers Forum as part
   of the High Technology Bid.
 It would be sensible to have an Employer Engagement Group to co-ordinate
   engagement between education providers and industry regarding work-related
   learning. This would address the problem of employers being inundated with
   approaches from education providers.




Appendix E: Stratford-Upon-Avon College - Profile




                                          27
Stratford-upon-Avon College is a medium sized College in Warwickshire with a
growing international reputation for quality. The College was shown to be the
strongest performing College in Warwickshire, according to the Government 16+
league tables for 2004-5.

Work experience placements play an important part in student life at the College and
staff maintain effective links with local employers.

Facilities
The excellent Media Centre is sponsored by JVC and the facilities boast:
 A digital television studio
 A radio studio
 Digital audio and visual editing suites
 A digital stills editing suite
 Black and white photography darkroom facilities

Provision
BTEC First Diploma in Media, both for full-time students and 14-16 year old gifted
and talented part-time students (SWIFT); BTEC National Diploma in Media (Moving
Image), (Audio), (Publishing); BTEC National Diploma in Multimedia (Computer
Games) (2006); BTEC National Diploma in Photography; currently running last year
of HND in Media; Foundation Degree in Media (2006); BA in Media Performance
(2007); BTEC Entry Arts and Media 16-25 Years; AS and A2 Media, Film and
Photography.

Industry Engagement
 ND Media students, working with industry professionals and other lecturers,
   undertake two days of live programming from the college’s TV studio. This work
   is broadcast across the college and involves students from lots of different
   disciplines. A highlight this year was ‘Stars in Their Eyes, College Special.’
   Students had been to see Stars in their Eyes being made in Nottingham and
   following their own version of the programme the tapes were sent away and
   commented upon, very favourably, by the professional production team in
   Nottingham.
 HND students have set up their own production company called Nines Company,
   which has been commissioned to produce audio visual products for various
   organisations.
 Programmes made by both ND Media and HND Media students are broadcast on
   the Creative Network Channel.
 ND Media students made two dramas and a documentary in Cornwall for a week
   in October of year two of the course. These films are then premiered to an invited
   audience in December. The students undertake all the planning, budgeting and
   promoting of this event. The event was well attended, not only including friends
   and family, but also some industry professionals.
 Local radio station Bear Radio regards the college as a supplier of presenters
   and recently asked the College to launch ‘Jock Idol’, a competition to find new
   presenters, which involved three of their BTEC National Diploma students
   reaching the final. To decide the overall winner, students had to co-present
   alongside a regular DJ.
 BBC Warwickshire and Coventry have commissioned students to make an
   ongoing documentary for them and this is now being shown on the channel.
 Programmes made by HND Media and ND Media students are broadcast on the
   Creative network Channel.
 The work that students do is regularly commissioned by local employers.


                                         28
   Lecturers, especially in practical areas of the course, are currently media
    practitioners.
   ND Media, HND Media and FD (Foundation Degree) Media have all been
    developed in discussion with local and national employers.
   Employers’ views and advice are sought in course planning. Chris Wood (MD
    Ragdoll) has discussed the need for animators and this has been built into the
    delivery of programmes for 2006-7.
   Lynda Ross, Head of School Creative and Cultural Studies, attends Screen West
    Midlands events, as well as national, industry events to ensure that courses are
    updated and adapted to fit industry imperatives.

Qualifications which lend themselves to Industry Engagement
 The range of audio/visual courses from Level 1-4 all benefit from employer
  engagement. Colleges must highlight the benefit to employers of being able to
  employ well-trained, highly motivated staff who have good industry standard
  audio visual skills as well as fully developed IT and Communication skills.
 The Foundation Degree has recently been written in conjunction with employers.
  The modules have been designed to reflect the balance of academic rigour whilst
  providing the skills needed for progression onto the BA (Hons) Top Up year or to
  employment within the industry.

Pathways for 14+ learners
 The College has 14-16 year old SWIFT Programme (South Warwickshire
   Initiative for training) students attending one day a week under the gifted and
   talented scheme to study the First Diploma in Media or First Diploma in
   Performing Arts. These students are able to pursue an industry focused course
   whilst at the same time taking between eight and ten GCSE’s. Six of these
   students are part of the Young Apprentices Scheme. The scheme at Stratford
   was deemed to be ‘exceptional’ in a recent Ofsted inspection (February 2006)
   due to the College’s partnership with the Royal Shakespeare Company.
 The SWIFT model shows the way in which academic rigour and vocational skills
   can be combined to provide students with a course that fully motivated them and
   in which they can succeed.

Barriers to effective Industry Engagement
 Because the industry is increasingly operated by small companies and freelance
   workers it is difficult for employers to find the time to engage with colleges.
 There is still an attitude towards ‘medja’ studies within the industry but this is
   being slowly eroded away.
 Hopefully as ex-students enter the workplace it will be recognised that they have
   usable skills and abilities that are an asset to the industry.
 Time constraints on college staff regarding visiting students on work experience.

Suggestions for action to improve or consolidate Industry Engagement
 All stakeholders in the industry working together, appreciating that they are all
   equal but may have different perspectives/expertise.
 Setting up networks and partnerships, for example an Employers Forum.




Appendix 1




                                          29
Full-time courses, within FE Colleges, related to the audiovisual industries
offered in the West Midlands

Dudley College

Art & Design BTEC Introductory Diploma – Level 1
Art & Design BTEC First Diploma – Level 2
Art & Design BTEC Diploma in Foundation Studies – Level 3
Art (General) BTEC National Diploma – Level 3
GCE – AS/A2 Levels in Art & Design, 3D Design, Dance, Film Studies, Graphics,
Music, Performance Studies, Photography.
Graphic Design – BTEC National Diploma – Level 3
Media BTEC First Diploma – Level 2
Multimedia BTEC National Diploma – Level 3
Media Studies (Access)
This course is primarily concerned with the visual media. It is suitable for applicants
with few or no formal qualifications.
Music Practice BTEC National Diploma – Level 3


Halesowen College

Media BTEC First Diploma
Film Studies AS/A Level
Media Studies AS/A Level
Media (Audio) BTEC National Diploma
Media (e-Media) BTEC National Diploma
Media (Publishing) BTEC National Diploma
Edexcel Foundation Degree Media (Moving Image) - proposed for 2006-7
Music Technology BTEC National Diploma
Performing Arts (Music) BTEC First Diploma


Henley College

Media, Art and design BTEC Introductory Diploma Level 1
Media BTEC First Diploma Level 2
Media – eMedia BTEC National Diploma
Media – Moving Image BTEC National Diploma
Media – Photography BTEC National Diploma
Media – Games Development BTEC National Diploma
Media Higher National Diploma
Moving Image Higher National Diploma
Multimedia Foundation Degree
Photography Foundation Degree

Computing – Digital Application (DIDA) Diploma Level 1
Using I.C.T.
Multimedia
Graphics
I.C.T. in Enterprise

Art and Design Foundation
Art and Design Intermediate First Diploma
Art and Design National Certificate


                                           30
Art and Design BTEC National Diploma
Graphic Design BTEC National Certificate
Graphic Design BTEC National Diploma
Graphic Design Higher National Certificate/Diploma


Hereward College

Including part-time courses:
GCSE Media
AS/A2 Media
HND Media
TV & Video – Basic Skills (College certificate)
Introduction to TV & Video (OCN module Certificate)
Access TV & Video Production (Access Certificate – OCN)
Introduction to Digital Photography (OCN Certificate Levels 1 and 2)
Digital Photography Level 3 (OCN Certificate)
Journalism (OCN Certificate Levels 2 and 3)


Kidderminster College

BTEC Higher National Diploma Media
AS/A2 Level Media Studies

BTEC National Certificate in Music Technology – DJ and Mixing
BTEC National Diploma in Music Technology
HND Film Making (Performance and Production)

BTEC National Diploma in Games Development

BTEC Introductory Diploma in Art & Design
BTEC First Diploma in Art, Design and Media
BTEC National Diploma in Art and Design
BTEC National Diploma in Foundation Studies Art and Design (Level 3)
AS/A2 Level Art and Design


Matthew Boulton College

Digital Technology (Dida) – Edexcel Diploma – Level 1 and 2

Art and Design – BTEC Introductory Certificates and Diplomas – Levels 1 and 2
Art and Design – BTEC First Diploma – Level 2
Art and Design – BTEC National Diploma – Level 3
BTEC National Diploma in Foundation Studies Art and Design – Level 3
Art and Design AS and A2 Level

Graphics – AS and A2 Level
Graphic Design – BTEC National Certificate – Level 3
Multimedia – BTEC National Diploma – Level 3
Photography – BTEC Introductory Award – Level 1
Photography – BTEC First Award – Level 2
Photography – BTEC National Diploma – Level 3
Photography AS and A2 Level


                                         31
Music Technology – BTEC National Diploma – Level 3
Music Technology NCFE – Level 1 and 2
Media AS and A2 Level
Film Studies AS and A2 Level
Vidoe Production – BTEC Intermediate Certificate


The Mediacove (The Media Centre of Vocational Excellence – a project led by
the City of Wolverhampton College in partnership with Sandwell College)

Music Technology – BTEC National Diploma
Music Production and Performance – BTEC Higher National Diploma (new for 2006)

Television Technology and Production – BSc (Hons) with UCE
National Diploma in Media (Moving Image)
Multimedia – BTEC National Diploma

Media Studies AS Level
Media Production GNVQ Intermediate

Journalism and Editorial Design BA (Hons) in association with University of
Wolverhampton
Foundation Degree in Broadcast Journalism
Journalism NCTJ (day-release)

Media (Photo imaging) – BTEC First Diploma
Photography – BTEC National Diploma
Photography HNC/HND


Newcastle-under-Lyme College

Film Studies AS/A Level – Level 3
Media Studies AS/A Level – Level 3
Photography AS/A Level – Level 3
City & Guilds 7500 Diploma in Media Techniques with pathway in Radio and
Journalism – Level 3
City & Guilds 7500 Diploma in Media Techniques with pathway in TV and Video –
Level 3

Art and Media Studies – Entry Level
GNVQ Foundation in Art and Design – Level 1
GNVQ Intermediate Art and Design – Level 2
Diploma in Introductory Studies in Art and Design – Level 3
BTEC National Diploma in Art and Design – Level 3
BTEC National Diploma in Design Crafts – Level 3
BTEC National Diploma in Graphic Design – Level 3
Art AS/A Level – Level 3
Graphic Design AS/A Level – Level 3
BTEC Diploma in Foundation Studies in Art and Design – Pre Degree


NEW (North East Worcestershire) College



                                         32
BTEC First Diploma Media (Moving Image)
First Diploma Performing Arts, Media and Music Technology
AS/A Level Media Studies
BTEC National Diploma Media (Moving Image)
BTEC Higher National Diploma Media (Moving Image)
BTEC First Diploma Music Technology
BTEC National Diploma Music Technology
BTEC Higher National Diploma Music Technology

BTEC First Diploma Art and Design
BTEC National Diploma Art and Design
BTEC Higher National Diploma Art and Design
BTEC Higher National Diploma Multimedia Development


Shrewsbury College of Arts and Technology

BTEC First Diploma in Music Technology
BTEC First Diploma in Media – Film and Animation
BTEC National Diploma in Multimedia
BTEC National Diploma in Media – Interactive Games Development
BTEC National Certificate in Multimedia alongside Art AS Level – this programme is
offered jointly by Shrewsbury Sixth Form College and Shrewsbury College


Solihull College

BTEC First Diploma in Media
BTEC National Diploma in Media

BTEC First Diploma in Art and Design
BTEC National Diploma in Graphic Design
BTEC National Diploma in Photography
HND in Graphic Design
HND in Photography and Digital Imaging

Diploma in Digital Applications for IT users (Level 1)
Diploma in Digital Applications (Level 2)

AS/A2 Levels in Film Studies; Media; Photography


The Sixth Form College Solihull

AS Media Studies (OCR)
A2 Media Studies (OCR)

OCR Level 3 National Diploma in Media
OCR Level 2 National Certificate in Media




South Birmingham College



                                           33
BTEC First Diploma in Media
BTEC National Certificate in Media – E-Media Production
BTEC National Diploma in E-Media
BTEC National Certificate in Media – Moving Image Production
BTEC National Diploma in Media – Moving Image Production
BTEC National Diploma in Games Design
BTEC Higher National Diploma in Media (Production and Audio Pathways)
NCFE Certificate Video Production
NCFE Certificate Digital Photography

BTEC First Diploma in Performing Arts – Acting, Dancing or Music Technology
BTEC National Certificate in Music Practice or Music Technology
BTEC National Diploma in Music Technology
NCFE Certificate in Music Technology


Stafford College

BTEC First Diploma in Art and Design
BTEC National Diploma in Multimedia
BTEC National Diplomas in: Photography, Graphic Design, Fashion and Fine Art
BTEC Higher National Diploma in Illustration – run in conjunction with Staffordshire
University
BTEC Higher National Diploma in Graphic Design – run in conjunction with
Staffordshire University
Foundation Course in Art and Design

BTEC First Diploma in Media
BTEC National Diploma in Media Production

BTEC First Diploma in Music Technology
BTEC National Diploma in Music Technology
BTEC Higher National Diploma in Music Production – run in conjunction with
Staffordshire University


Stoke on Trent College

BTEC Introductory Diploma in Art, Design and Media
BTEC First Diploma in Art and Design
BTEC First Diploma in Media
NVQ Level 2 Signwork
BTEC National Diploma Media – Moving Image
BTEC National Diploma Media Imaging Design
NVQ Level 3 Signwork
BTEC National Diploma in Multimedia
BTEC Higher National Diploma in Media/Photography
BTEC First Diploma in Music Technology
BTEC National Diploma in Music Technology




Stratford-upon-Avon College



                                         34
BTEC Entry Arts and Media 16-25 years – Level E1-E3
BTEC Introductory Certificate in Art, Design and Media
BTEC Introductory Diploma in Art, Design and Media
BTEC First Diploma in Art and Design
BTEC National Diploma in Art and Design
BTEC National Diploma in Photography

A Level Performance and Media Package
BTEC First Diploma in Media
BTEC National Diploma in Media – (Moving Image), (Audio), (Publishing)
BTEC National Diploma in Interactive Media – Games Development – new for 2006
HND in Media
Foundation Degree in Media – new for 2006
BA in Media Performance – new for 2007
As/A2 Levels: Film Studies; Media Studies; Photography


Sutton Coldfield College

A Level Media Studies
A Level Film Studies
BTEC First Diploma Media
BTEC National Diploma Media
GCSE Media
City & Guilds 7500 Diploma in Media (Television and Video) Level 3
Pre-Entry Certificate in Journalism

Diploma in Foundation Studies (Art & Design)
HND in Graphic Design


Tamworth and Lichfield College

BTEC First Diploma in Art and Design
BTEC National Diploma in Art and Design
BTEC National Diploma in Media (Moving Image)
BTEC Diploma in Foundation Studies in Art and Design
Foundation Degree in Creative Arts (provisional title) – new for 2006
BTEC Higher National Diploma in Media – Moving Image


Telford College of Arts and Technology (TCAT)

BTEC Introductory Diploma in Art and Media
BTEC First Diploma in Art, Design and Media
BTEC National Certificate in Art and Design
BTEC National Certificate in Media
Foundation Diploma in Art and Design


Walsall College of Arts and Technology

BTEC Level 1 Introductory Diploma in Art, Design and Media
BTEC National diploma in Graphic Design
HND Graphic Design


                                         35
HND Digital Media
BTEC First Diploma in Media
BTEC National diploma in media
HNC/HND Media (Moving Image)
AS/A Levels: Film Studies; Communication Studies; Media Studies


Warwickshire College

BTEC First Diploma Media
BTEC National Diploma Media (Moving Image)
BTEC National Diploma Music Technology
BTEC National Diploma Media (Games Development)

BTEC Introductory Diploma Art, Design and Media
ABC Diploma Foundation Studies in Art and Design - Level 2/3 for mature students
BTEC/ABC Diploma Foundation Studies in Art and Design
BTEC National Diploma Photography
BTEC National Diploma Graphic Design
BTEC National Diploma Multimedia


A selection of industry training providers in the West Midlands

CSV Media Clubhouse, Birmingham
TV, video, web and radio production training
www.csv.org.uk
Email: eforman@csv.org.uk
Tel: 0121 248 7272


Light House
Media training courses
www.light-house.co.uk
Email: kelly@light-house.co.uk
Tel: 01902 716055


WCRT (Wolverhampton Community Radio Training Limited)
Radio production skills course
www.wcrt.co.uk
Tel: 01902 572260




Appendix 2



                                         36
Regional industry - companies and freelancers - engaged with formal
education provision in the West Midlands

Companies: not an exhaustive list

Armoris Films
Aqua Pacific
Aquilla Post Production
BBC
BBC Coventry and Warwickshire
BBC Mailbox
BBC Radio WM
BDW
Beacon Radio
Birmingham City Council
Birmingham College of Food and Technology
BRMB Radio
Calumet
Carlton TV
Central Independent Newspapers Limited
Codemasters
Connect PR
Conoco Philips
Coventry Sports Foundation
Creative Launch Pad
Education Business Partnerships
Film Birmingham
Forward Vision
Galaxy FM
Hotbed Media
Ilford Imaging
Kic FM
MAS Records
Maggothouse
Maverick TV Productions
Midlands News
Mix Mag Magazine
Multicultural Magazine
Permajet
Rainmaker
Rolls Royce
Royal Photographic Society
Screen West Midlands
Sift Six
Soho Editors Training
Spark CI Centre
Switch Design
The Express (newspaper)
The Farm
The Star (newspaper)
TV Network
Underdog Productions
Waveform Solutions
Wolsely UK
Warwickshire County Arts Service


                                     37
Freelancers: not an exhaustive list

Laurence Becko                        Radio Producer
Steve Cridge                          TV & Video producer/editor
Paul Grey (Venture Portraits)         Industry Speaker
Russell Minton                        BBC
Steve Reckles                         TV & Video producer/editor
John Slade                            BskyB
Tony Summers                          Film
Matt Young                            Journalist/graphic designer




Appendix 3



                                          38
Glossary of terms

CoVE - Centre of Vocational Excellence in Further Education. Recognised and
awarded by the Learning and Skills Council in England.

LSC - Learning and Skills Councils - The Learning and Skills Council is responsible
for funding and planning education and training for over 16-year-olds in England.
With a budget of over £8 billion (2003-04) the Council operates through 47 local
offices and a national office in Coventry.

National Occupational Standards – Statements of performance which describe
what competent people in particular occupations are expected to be able to know
and do.

NVQ – National Vocational Qualification

Regional Development Agency – primary role is to strategically drive regional
economic development. Established under the Regional Development Agencies Act
1998, they are non departmental bodies funded by Government through the
Department of Trade and Industry.

Skillset - The Sector Skills Council for the audio visual industries which include
Broadcast, Film, Video, Interactive media and Photo Imaging.

Skills shortage - A shortage of a specifically skilled individual within the workforce a
sector.

SME - Small and Medium Enterprises – businesses employing up to 199 employees
(LSC definition)

Sector Skills Agreements (SSAs) - UK wide agreements between employers and
training providers brokered by Sector Skills Councils. SSAs give employers more say
in determining the skills their business needs to increase productivity and profitability
and will make sure the public education and training system delivers these needs.
SSAs are being piloted by four SSCs: Skillset; e-skills UK; CITB and Skillsfast UK.

Sector Skills Councils (SSCs) – Independent, industry lead, UK wide organisations
developed by groups of influential employers in industry or business sectors of
economic or strategic significance and licensed by the Sectors Skills Development
Agency (SSDA) SSCs are not public agencies but are in receipt of limited public
funds. However, they have a key role in influencing where public investment in
training and education for the sector is made.

Vocational - Structured programs of practical learning designed to develop
occupation skills. Sometimes described as practice




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