Differentiating Employability Skills

By Russell Griffiths

As a vocational college we must not lose sight of the fact that we are preparing learners for work. Our ultimate success should not be judged on how many achieve a particular level but “attain relevant qualifications so that they can and do progress to the next stage of their education into courses that lead to higher-level qualifications and into jobs that meet local and national needs” Common inspection framework August 2015, No. 150065

Under the new common inspection framework personal development welfare and behaviour is a limiting judgement for the overall effectiveness of an institution. Part of this judgement is “does the institution promote, where relevant, employability skills so that they are well prepared for the next stage of their education, employment, self-employment or training?” Common inspection framework August 2015, No. 150065

So with this in mind, within the electrical workshop we run scenario based daily activities, giving learners responsibility and ownership of their study. We have 7 booths for learners to work in and these are split into working teams, each team has a supervisor for a two week period and they are in charge of that team, responsible for checking health and safety timekeeping and quality of work for each of their team which they report directly to the main tutor. The supervisors’ role is rotated to give everyone a turn, the initial supervisors were selected from the differentiated booth plan using the group profile. As well as supervisors there is also a clerk of works who has overall responsibility for all of the workshop ensuring all health and safety and quality of work. They report to the tutor on all matters and must review progress of all work during the session and report back at the end of the session on how all students have progressed during the session. In doing this site hierarchy activity we use a wide variety of learning strategies including;

  1. Stretch and challenge for all learners
  2. Differentiation
  3. Peer assessment
  4. Peer collaboration
  5. Problem solving in teams
  6. Independence within the classroom
  7. Evidence of progress
  8. Responsibilities
  9. Professional standards
  10. Real life vocational situations

See our resources and lesson plans from University of Portsmouth to start your planning – Personalised Study Programmes – Skills for Progression


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