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Protecting work and study abroad after 2012 Jim Coleman, Chair, UCML.

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Presentation on theme: "Protecting work and study abroad after 2012 Jim Coleman, Chair, UCML."— Presentation transcript:

1 Protecting work and study abroad after 2012 Jim Coleman, Chair, UCML

2 2 Assistantships November 2010: British Council funding for assistantship scheme suspended Effective campaign Funding now guaranteed to end of Comprehensive Spending Review (2014/15) srd/text/ htm# srd/text/ htm# So what made the campaign effective?

3 3 Assistantships Direct contact with Government Departments Lobbying and letter writing – individuals writing to Government and their MPs, not rent-a-mob or petition Press coverage Raised in Parliament (Baroness Coussins, All-Party Parliamentary Group) Robust data – cost £747,409, i.e. £126 a head Robust evidence of importance and value

4 4 Assistantships Above all, a single clear message No tribalism (Worton report 2009, Language People 1988)

5 5 Numbers and trends Whole-programme and within-programme (degree mobility vs. credit mobility); data difficulties Globally –3.3 million in 2008 (OECD), +65% since 2000 –3.43 million in 2009 (UNESCO), +75% since 2000 –Increasing 10+% a year, expected to double by 2020 –But currently below 2% of students worldwide

6 6 Numbers and trends Erasmus outgoers EU steady increase, boosted by –EU accession countries –Inclusion of work placements from 2006/07 Figures adjusted retrospectively to include work placements UK decline then increase –Especially by inclusion of assistantships

7 7 Erasmus outgoers (percentage change) 00/01- 01/02 01/02- 02/03 02/03- 03/04 03/04- 04/05 04/05- 05/06 05/06- 06/07 06/07- 07/08 07/09- 08/09 08/09- 09/10 Total UK

8 8 Erasmus outgoers In some countries (e.g. Spain, Finland, Austria) more than 10% of graduates have Erasmus experience In UK, fewer than 2% - only Romania and Croatia do worse Erasmus launch year 1987/88: UK largest contributor with 28.5% of total But 2009/10 sixth, 5.5% of total UK has highest share of work placements – nearly one- third of 2009/10 total of 11,723 outgoers

9 9 Erasmus outgoers Language students only 15% of total Erasmus numbers In UK only, consistently 40+% Since inclusion of work placements/assistantships, nearly half (48.28% 2008/09) Therefore Disappointing national picture, but Distinctive CV entry for UK graduates Especially for non-specialist linguists

10 10 Assistantships Assistantships peaked in mid-1990s at over 2,500, then declined, and are now rising again 2001/022004/052007/082009/

11 11 Total UK outgoers 2009/10 Erasmus students 8,053 Erasmus placements3,670 Non-Erasmus assistants 390 Comenius assistants 102 Non-European mobility4,500 approx. Total 16,715 approx. Thanks to David Hibler, British Council and Joan-Anton Carbonell, Kingston University

12 12 Current student fees (England) Regulations on what student pays to home university Full-year Erasmus: no fee Full-year work/study abroad: maximum 50% fee (see OFFA guidance p.10) 10+ weeks full-time study at home university OR less than 30 weeks total current and previous years NOT full- time UK study (sandwich rule): 100% fee

13 13 Current income (England) Regulations on what HEFCE pays to UK HEI Price-band: Band C for language students, other price-bands for non-language specialists Erasmus study OR combined Erasmus study+work placement: 100% price-band + 50% of student fee Erasmus work placement: 50% price-band + 50% of student fee Non-Erasmus work placement: 50% price-band Non-Erasmus study: 100% price-band Students failing sandwich rule: 100% price-band Part of block grant; reimbursement of student fees also retrospective; money goes to HEI not Department

14 14 Current costs (Home HEI) Administration and management Online support Site visits Arranging work placements Vacation grants, travel grants Enrolment fees (e.g. Russia, Jordan, China, Japan) Supervision and teaching of incoming exchange students

15 15 Current income (student) Erasmus grant a month (average 254) Assistants a month Europe (may also get Erasmus grant), $1700 Canada, RMB China Work placements not always unpaid Study abroad higher rate loan, work placements lower rate loan Lower-income students Local Authority support for travel and insurance

16 16 Benefits of work and study abroad Academic Cultural Intercultural Linguistic Personal Professional (graduate employability) See Shaping the Future of Languages: Internationalisation

17 17 Benefits of work and study abroad Residence abroad enhances employability A factor in landing first and subsequent jobs for over 70% of language graduates, a significant factor for over 30%, the determining factor for about 10% Skills gained during residence abroad come in useful at work for nine out of ten language graduates Academic mobility a good predictor for a satisfying international career

18 18 Research QMUL: 2 years from September 2011, work placements and skills development Southampton: 2.5 years from February 2011, language learning Portsmouth: long-term impact on French graduates of semester/year abroad in Senegal

19 19 Government backing Businesses say there arent enough students with experience of languages, different cultures and the wider world. British companies want to export abroad but one of the problems they raise with us is that British students dont have foreign languages and an experience of living in another country. One of my aims is to try and encourage our undergraduates and postgraduates to study abroad and the best way to do that is to ensure it counts towards a British degree. There has to be time overseas doing a programme which a British university recognises and validates. It would enrich the outlook of British students and make them more employable. (David Willetts, 2010)

20 20 Government backing Speaking in February 2011 to a conference on Europe and the wider world, David Willetts said: The options available for UK students to spend time in Europe as part of their degree are particularly worth pursuing, and there are real benefits in terms of gaining the skills that employers will value David Willetts suggested to the European Commissioner that Erasmus should be extended worldwide

21 21 Employability 2011 Eurobarometer survey found that work experience was deemed a crucial asset by 87% of graduate recruiters, while nearly half of all companies with considerable international dealings believed that foreign language skills are the most important skills for the future. A graduate recruiter: We prefer the courses that include some time spent living abroad… we do prefer that they have had some in-country experience certainly before they come here.

22 22 Employability CBI: Language skills and an ability to work in a multi- cultural environment are also valuable in an increasingly globalised workplace. Foreign language proficiency adds significantly to a candidates portfolio of skills, not just in terms of conversational ability, but also general cultural awareness and sensitivity.

23 23 Employability Council for Industry and Higher Education: Graduates who have international experience are highly employable because they have demonstrated that they have drive, resilience and inter-cultural sensitivities as well as language skills HEFCE study: Study abroad can significantly boost the chances of a student's success in later life, and bring benefits to the UK's knowledge economy.

24 24 Raising awareness and concern BBC online 30 March Times Higher Education 7 April ncode=26&storycode= The Linguist June/July 2011 House of Lords debate 31 March 2011 House of Lords oral question 27 April 2011

25 25 UCML Lobbying Oral question to David Willetts at British Academy Language Matters More and More event Letters to David Willetts, HEFCE Co-signatory BUTEX letter Meeting with BIS Meeting with HEFCE 6 July

26 26 What can UCML members do? Wait for the White Paper, due this month –Will the market bear year abroad fees of £4,500? –Will HEFCE continue to pay 50% of student fees once these have tripled? –Will HEFCE continue to pay price-band funding for bands A and B?

27 27 What can UCML members do? Lobby actively and individually Within your university With your MP With BIS

28 28 What arguments? UK needs internationally competent graduates UK participation in work and study abroad is already lower than competitors in Europe and beyond Benefits to UK economy Increased costs to students will deter them from language degrees and other four-year programmes Increased costs to universities will discourage them from supporting work and study abroad

29 29 What arguments? Comparative costs already persuade some students to choose the safer Erasmus option (e.g. Spain not Mexico, Germany not Russia on Joint Degrees) UK needs global graduates: good opportunity to level the field between Erasmus/non-Erasmus Placements arguably more significant for UK economy: good opportunity to level the field between study and placements Big return for a modest investment …

30 30 The bottom line UCML urges the Government to agree that financial support for work and study abroad beyond 2011/12 is essential that support should embrace not just European placements and assistantships, but all destinations, notably China, India, Japan, the Middle East, Africa and Latin America. The only funding solution which will not be a disincentive to students and/or to English universities is one which keeps the contribution of both to about the current level. Anything else could influence student choice away from four-year language degrees – something the country, in a globalising economy, simply cannot afford.

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