Share this page

X

The Organisation for Economic Co-operation and Development (OECD) began their SDS-commissioned research on the Scottish work-based learning system with a four-day trip to Scotland from 25-28 November.  

Visiting a range of important stakeholders, the research project aims to examine how best to ensure resilience in the system in the face of likely social and economic change. 

As Scotland’s national skills body, Skills Development Scotland (SDS) commissioned the OECD to undertake the study, which will focus on Modern, Foundation and Graduate Apprenticeships, and Work-based Learning at Level 4 and 5.  

We’ve asked the OECD to help us look at two things; Mega trends - those big things happening that we, within Scotland, need to be able to understand and respond to; and what makes a resilient work-based learning system.”

Tony Coultas, Head of Service Innovation, Engagement and Governance at SDS

The four-day visit  

Supported by detailed documentary material provided by SDS, the purpose of the visit for the OECD team was to gain a clear understanding of the workings of the work-based learning programmes under examination, as well as the wider context in which they are delivered 

It also aimed to identify, in the light of expected developments in the social and economic environment in Scotland, future challenges to the skills system in general and on work-based learning programmes specifically. 

Led by Viktoria Kis, acting Head of the OECD Vocational Education and Training Team, and Simon Field, leading independent expert on the comparative analysis of country skills systems, the four-day trip included visits with SDS, Scottish Government, St Modans High School, Forth Valley College and the University of Glasgow 

During these visits, the OECD team were able to pose questions to attendees to explore the themes being discussed. These included the early provision of work-based learning, Graduate Apprenticeship experience and employer engagement, and policy and regulation. 

"I think it’s fundamental that employers have to be involved in the process of apprenticeships and skills if we’re going to build an economy which is fit for the future and where employers play an integral part. "

Paul Campbell, Head of Learning and Development at Scottish Water

Paul Campbell, Head of Learning and Development at Scottish Water, attended a workshop. He said: “We are here looking at the resilience of Scotland’s skills system, and apprenticeships, and discussing the changes that are taking place in the environment of our world of work and how the apprenticeship system will need to adapt to make sure that it’s sustainable for the future.”  

Paul added: “I think it’s fundamental that employers have to be involved in the process of apprenticeships and skills if we’re going to build an economy which is fit for the future and where employers play an integral part.  

“Employers have to be at the table at these conversations, making sure their voice is heard and helping to shape what the system will look like in the future.” 

Outcomes from the visit  

Following the visit last week, the OECD will prepare a draft report drawing on the organisation’s international experience. 

Back to News