UWE Bristol has been rated ‘good’ by Ofsted inspectors for its provision of degree apprenticeships.
The University began offering apprenticeships in 2017-18 and now has 2,300 learners across 25 apprenticeship standards, including advanced engineering, built environment, construction, health, applied science, protective services and business management. The University is one of the largest providers in the South West, delivering degree and higher apprenticeships to more than 350 employers.
Following their visit to UWE Bristol in December last year, Government inspectors from Ofsted rated provision at the University as ‘good’ in all areas. Their report said: “UWE Bristol’s leaders have rapidly developed a successful apprenticeship offer that builds on the university’s long history of working with industries in the region.”
The report added that apprentices “gain the knowledge they need to be successful in their career because lecturers and employers plan curriculums that reflect the industries in which apprentices work” and “develop a good understanding of what constitutes high professional standards in the workplace”.
Professor Steve West, Vice-Chancellor at UWE Bristol, said: “This is an important achievement for the University and is testament to the hard work that our staff, partners and employers put into ensuring a high-quality learning experience for our apprentices. As one of the biggest providers of higher and degree apprenticeships in the South-West, we are committed to delivering innovative programmes that meet the skills needs of the local economy and improve educational and occupational opportunity for all. We are very pleased by the positive feedback that the inspection report provides, which will help inform the ongoing development and enhancement of our apprenticeship portfolio. As we move forward, current and prospective employer partners looking to develop their workforce to meet the challenges of the future can have confidence in the quality of education that UWE Bristol provides. Many thanks to all who contributed to this success.”
Of the inspection, Dr Anne Eason, Associate Head of Department (Policing) at UWE Bristol, said: “It was an opportunity to showcase the excellent work undertaken on the programme and the great collaboration we have with our partners. The process was well coordinated and learning points were communicated and discussed throughout, making it a reflective and reassuring experience.”
David Barrett, Director of Apprenticeships at UWE Bristol, said: “I’m so proud of the fantastic apprenticeship delivery at UWE Bristol. As a university with practice at the core of our mission, we are committed in designing apprenticeships that deliver high-quality skills training that meet employer workforce needs and transform apprentices futures. Our first full Ofsted outcome is a real testament to the enthusiasm, hard work and dedication of our staff, employers and apprentices in meeting the high expectations we all have for our apprenticeships.”
Dr Harriet Shortt, Associate Professor of Organisation Studies, and Lead for Apprenticeships in the University’s College of Business and Law, said: “What a fantastic result! The Ofsted inspection provided us with a great opportunity to share the enthusiasm, dedication, and commitment we put into all our apprenticeship programmes here at UWE. As a team, right across the university, we should be really proud of this achievement – it felt like a true collaboration that highlighted the very best we have to offer.”
Simon Flenley, Head of Apprenticeships at UWE Bristol, said: “We are really proud of this positive outcome from our first full Ofsted inspection. As well as reflecting the exceptional quality of education that apprentices and employers benefit from, it further enhances the university’s reputation in this area of provision. This allows us to sustain the employer partnerships that we have worked hard on securing and managing, as well as exploring exciting opportunities in the future. A significant number of staff from college and service areas all played a part in the success of our first full inspection, and I would like to extend my thanks to everyone involved. It really demonstrates the huge benefits and strengths of team working across the institution and the outcomes are well deserved for Team UWE.”