15-24 Learner Journey Review

Report of the Scottish Government's review of education provision for 15-24 year olds.

Annex A: Our Approach

SQW research with young people

241. The review commenced in September 2016, when the Scottish Government commissioned consultants SQW, working with Young Scot, to undertake a piece of research with young people of their experiences of the education and skills system. The views of young people are summarised in this report. The final report, detailing the approach taken is available at http://www.gov.scot/publications/young-peoples-experience-education-training-15-24-years/

242. A total of 145 young people took part in the research and representatives of this group, a total of 35 young people, also participated in a workshop discussion with Shirley Anne-Somerville, Minister for Further Education, Higher Education and Science.

Learner Journey Review Group

243. Supporting the review at a national level we established a Learner Journey Review Group, to provide advise at three stages of the programme: at its initiation, informing our key values, and scope; at the mid-way point in tackling early challenges; and in conclusion, helping us to shape final policy propositions to Minister's.

The five projects of the review

244. To manage engagement we created five project teams to lead five strands of activity; three focussed on careers, choice and application and the other two on the system (provision, transitions and progression) and its funding. The Scottish Government led each project, with agency, stakeholder and user involvement, and used critical friends to provide advice.

245. These projects are set out below on page 72. Reports from each of the projects are available at /policies/young-people-training-employment/15-24-learner-journey-review/

246. To ensure the work of the five projects was aligned, it was connected to, and assisted by a central programme team.

247. Through these mechanisms the review prioritised engagement from across the whole education and skills system. This included:

  • Each project working with a range of representatives including from agencies, schools, colleges, training providers and universities.
  • Joining up engagement at a programme level through an over-arching discussion with the Review Group.
  • Engagement was supplemented by a programme of regional events, delivered across Scotland including with the regional DYW employer groups and with Colleges and their partners.

248. Membership of all the programme groups can be found at Annex B.


249. In taking forward the review we agreed a set of cores values, developed in discussion with partners, to enable an education and skills system that:

  • Puts the learner at the centre
    It is important that our education and skills system delivers the full range of learning young people need at the right level and the right quality

  • Prioritises access and works for all learners, so that non-linear and part-time journeys are supported and joined up
    It is important – not least to provide the stepping stones for those that need them - that the journeys remain flexible to best support learner needs and preferences.

    It is important that we give learners the time they need as part of a commitment to life-long learning.

  • Is straightforward, connected and designed for the learner
    It is important that learners should easily be able to identify the best journey for them and avoid unnecessary duplication of effort and cost as they travel within the education and skills system.

The Projects used to structure the review and engagement with stakeholders

15-24 Learner Journey Review: Projects

1 Learner Choice and Application

2 Learner Choice and Application: Colleges & Universities

3 Access & Application

4 Provision Transition/ Progression

5 Funding, Structures, Legislation

Improving information, advice and application processes

This will include evaluating the cost/benefit of a learner choices and applications service which brings together student support information and the careers, advice and information system on My World of Work with UCAS, Apprenticeship on line and a new college application process.

Improving information, advice and application processes

This will include a review of current careers, advice and guidance services for learners in college and university.

Improving the ease and equity with which young people can apply to college

Recognising the work already being taken forward as part of the Commission for Widening Access, this will focus specifically on evaluating the benefits and costs/ of a common application process for colleges.

Improving the design, alignment and coherence of the 15-24 learning journey

Improving the ease with which all young people move through their learning, regardless of where they are studying.

This will include evaluating the opportunities and 15-24 Learner Journey choices in and across schools, colleges, training providers and community / third sector based learning. Identify and consider any unnecessary duplication of learning.

We will establish options for removing unnecessary repetition and maximising progression through levels of study in or between school, community, college, training and university.

Improving the system & removing unnecessary duplication

We will develop a system wide analysis of unit cost and rate of return across school, community, college, training (including employability programmes), and university.

We will use this to inform options for the future balance and method of investment. We will consider the future strategic direction of the learning system in Scotland.


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