Teaching and Learning in Further Education

Teaching and Learning in Further Education

Teaching and Learning in Further Education

Teaching and Learning in Further Education

Synopsis

This book addresses strategies for teaching and recording achievement as well as exploring ways in which students learn. Readers are invited, through a case study approch, to consider differing student needs and how they might be served within FE.

Excerpt

This book has been written, primarily, for people who are embarking on a teaching career in colleges of further education (FE) and for those already teaching who may wish to review their approaches to and understanding of the process of teaching and learning. It may also be of use to managers in fe and to people working in organisations which have a relationship with fe colleges.

The book attempts to encapsulate the dynamic and volatile world as experienced day in and day out by students and staff in the hundreds of fe colleges throughout the United Kingdom. For unless one is able to have some picture of these powerhouses of education and training, it is difficult to begin to envisage the nature of the teaching and learning which goes on within the fe sector.

To teach in an fe college as the twentieth century draws to a close is a very demanding job. At first glance, it would seem that the fe teacher shares little of the advantages enjoyed by colleagues in schools and universities. Unlike schools, colleges are open to their students from early in the morning to late at night, often at weekends, and, increasingly, throughout the traditional summer holiday period from mid-July to early September. Unlike universities, colleges are open to people of all abilities, from those adults who may be learning to read and write to those who are technically highly skilled and, again increasingly, to those who are following undergraduate and postgraduate courses. There is a heterogeneity about the student body, structures and curricular offerings in fe colleges which would send some school and university teachers running for cover. That very diversity, however, helps make fe colleges such stimulating and exciting environments in which to work as a teacher.

As we write, fe colleges are experiencing yet another period of change and there are many problems across the whole sector: there are conflicts between staff and managers about contracts of employment; battles between colleges and their funding bodies about resource levels; anger about the levels of bureaucracy associated with the validation and accreditation of courses leading to national qualifications; the emergence of a damaging competitive

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