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Professor Alyson Tobin Professor of Biology University of St Andrews.

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2 Professor Alyson Tobin Professor of Biology University of St Andrews

3 Current Enhancement Theme Developing and Supporting the Curriculum (DSC) From 2011 to 2014; in three phases Phase 1 (March 2011-June 2012) : Institutional and sectoral scoping of topic (complete) Phase 2 (July 2012-December 2013): On-going institutional work (development, projects, case studies) Phase 3 (December 2013-July 2014): Institutional focus on the outcomes and how the Theme has facilitated change to enhance the student learning experience; likely continuation of project work, building on outcomes of this year’s topic strands

4 DSC topic-based projects, 2012-13 Curriculum for Excellence (CfE) and its impact on higher education The flexible curriculum Staff: enhancing teaching

5 Curriculum for Excellence: its impact on higher education our starting point Universities Scotland 2012 Beyond the Senior Phase Report: University Engagement with Curriculum for Excellence

6 About Curriculum for Excellence Since 2003, CfE aims to offer a coherent, more flexible and enriched curriculum for 3-18 year olds in Scotland Based on Constructivist model of learning, 3-15 year olds will have a Broad General Education, based on Experiences and Learning Outcomes 16-18 year olds will have a Senior Phase, where the skills for learning, life and work are emphasised and learning can be personalised, with choices about pace of learning

7 About Curriculum for Excellence contd All learners have Entitlements to learning, with assessment for learning central to measuring this Pastoral support and Health and Well-Being are key elements New qualifications include National 4 and 5 at age 16; Highers and Advanced Highers have been revised Schools will be measured on attainment and providing a Positive Destination for all leavers, requiring partnerships beyond school

8 The project team Study: Dr Lesley Doyle, University of Glasgow Vivienne Brown, Vivienne Brown Associates David Cameron, The Real David Cameron Ltd DSC Steering Committee lead: Professor Alyson Tobin, University St Andrews QAA Scotland lead: Thelma Barron

9 Purpose of the Study An examination of how the new 3-18 curriculum in Scotland might impact on universities, with particular reference to students' learning experiences To what extent are universities preparing for the anticipated impact; and is there a need for better engagement across the education sector in order to aid the transition into HE?

10 Focus of the study qualitative exploratory study focusing on impact of CfE pedagogical changes for HE sector, from the perspectives of senior staff in schools, colleges and HEIs also involving wide range of cross-sector agencies and organisations aiming to contribute towards a sustainable and productive dialogue between the sectors, to ease transition to CfE

11 Initiating dialogue to identify sectoral perspectives Sample: 41 participants recruited to form: a core group and 3 focus groups - schools, colleges and HEIs Methods employed: One to one and focus group meetings; and a Core Group On-line briefings to stimulate sectoral discussion fora Separate on-line survey of each of the 3 learning sectors, and six local authorities

12 Emergent Key Themes Collaboration Provision of Learning and Skills Access and Admissions Student Experience

13 Suggestions from participants in this small- scale study that warrant further research: 1.The impact of CfE on: Learners Access and Fairness Admissions Policies and Procedures 2.The extent and nature of current, successful HEI involvement with other learning sectors, on CfE developments

14 Continued….. 3.Within and cross-sector dialogue on: Developing future Admissions Policies CPD, especially into and out of Senior Phase Senior Phase developments; and transitions to HE Provision of learning, skills and assessment Skills profiling in schools and colleges, and Graduate Attributes The ‘knowledge vs skills’ debate

15 Suggestions from participants reflect the following concerns: Lack of knowledge about how each sector works at the moment, leading to Misinformation about how CfE will impact on HEIs, leading to Misconceptions by each sector about how CfE developments could be optimised in and across sectors, creating Missed opportunities and barriers to effective collaboration and progress

16 Questions 1.How would you describe a future entrant to HEIs, who has experienced CfE? 2.How would you build better collaboration? 3.What do you think are the key CfE issues for HEIs? 4.What do you think is the way forward on Admissions in the context of CfE?

17 Almost…. The study report will be published on the Enhancement Themes web-site at the end of July 2013. Contact: Thelma Barron, QAA Scotland Tel: 0141 572 3431 E-mail:

18 Finally Professor Alyson Tobin University of St Andrews Email:

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