University College Birmingham (UK)

UCB is a Higher Education Institution with a vocational education, training and services mission.  It has an unusually high proportion of FE students, with a strong track record of encouraging them to progress into undergraduate provision both here at UCB and elsewhere. UCB’s vocational mission means that strong links with employers and representative bodies are created and maintained, and this has enabled UCB to be awarded Beacon status by the DCSF (the only HEI to achieve this) and accreditation with many professional bodies. Beacon status is conferred for excellence and innovation within the Learning and Skills Sector and recognises learning providers that deliver outstanding teaching and learning and that are well led and managed.

UCB is highly unusual in the HE Sector in that the mix of its provision is approximately 60% higher education and 40% further education. UCB offers programmes ranging from postgraduate and undergraduate programmes through to National Vocational Qualifications and National Diplomas at Further Education levels. This mix of provision enables students, sometimes with few if any formal qualifications, to develop their knowledge, skills and confidence to a point where they are able to progress to fulfil their educational potential on higher education programmes within the institution.  Around 30% of all UCB students are aged 30 or over, 96% are from state schools and colleges, and we have one of the highest proportions of learners from backgrounds that have little or no experience of HE in any HEI.

The School of Education and Community is very skilled in recruiting and supporting non-traditional students.  Some of the School’s programmes are delivered through community-based partner organisations (like St Georges Community Hub).  The Working With Gangs Programme is an ‘organic’ development within the School, given such partnerships and is in line with existing core provision around community and related subjects within the School (such as programmes in Health and Social Care, Community Family Support, Learner Mentoring, Playwork and Youth and Community Development).

UCB has an extensively developed Exchange Programme with partner colleges and universities in Denmark, Italy, Spain, Czech Republic, Portugal, Finland, Latvia, the Netherlands, Hungary, Austria, Estonia, France, Poland, Sweden and Lithuania. Opportunities for similar international study exchange programmes beyond Europe are available with our University partners in San Diego, Bangkok, Macao, Kuala Lumpur, Melbourne and China.

Role in the project:

UCB will provide research expertise, knowledge, experience and  understanding in the support of learner cohorts and in the development/writing of the Training the Trainers Programme and will also be involved in delivering the training to potential Trainers from the other partner European organisations.

Contact person: Soni Sangeeta – Lecturer | s.soni@ucb.ac.uk
www.ucb.ac.uk