Abi: access student

My life had come crashing down. I’d lost a lot of my confidence. I had heard about this course. I signed up and it changed my life.

Claire: teacher educator

'I think it's important for my students to become critical and to look at the world around them.'


Overview of the project


Transformational Further Education: Empowering People & Communities.

This research aims to understand and provide evidence of how the further education (FE) sector is vital in transforming lives and communities in 21st century Britain. To provide a frame of reference, which is underpinned and driven by excellence in the sector, the study will provide learners and teachers with the opportunity to tell their stories, linking the distinctness of FE to the impact it has on individuals, society and the economy, and strongly drawing out the role of the teacher in making a difference to quality teaching and learning.

vickyThe two researchers undertaking this project, Vicky Duckworth and Rob Smith aim to inform and facilitate UCU’sfunding-interview empowering and inclusive vision of FE and will be a rich source of evidence to draw upon in campaigning work in order to influence policy makers and shape policy.

Watch our introductory video below.


The Value of Adult Education

Kerry Scattergood is an adult literacy tutor, delivering functional skills in the adult & community team at Solihull College and University Centre. She believes in empowering learners’ voices through literacy events and that real reading and writing experiences can be transformative for adult learners. Kerry blogs at: everydayliteracyproject.wordpress.com, sharing her ideas and practice with other…

Jacqui, Assistant Principal (video #2): Colleges and their communities

In this second extract from her interview, Jacqui talks about the vital community work colleges are involved in. Jacqui’s interview positions colleges at the heart of the communities in which they are situated. She links further education colleges’ work to wider social issues such as addressing the effects of poverty and issues of mental health.…

Jacqui: Assistant Principal

In this interview, Jacqui talks about her work as a teacher in a further education college in Birmingham.     She outlines the vital work colleges do that is often overlooked, such as: working with gang members and with young people who have not thrived at school.       She recounts stories in which…