From education to employment

LSC funded research shows “taster” courses successful in encouraging re-enrolment

Four out of ten adult learners were encouraged into further education courses after studying “taster” sessions, a new report has revealed.

Further, these short courses were effective in recruiting over 60% of learners of Asian origin back into education.

The report, published by the Learning and Skills Network (LSN), demonstrates that taster courses were found to be effective in re-introducing many learners into longer courses; the sessions were only three to six hours in length.

The research was based on learners aged 19 or over, who were enrolled on taster courses in further education colleges in 2001/02. Following that, researchers carried out yearly checks until 2005 to ensure these learners were “genuinely new” to learning. Checks were also made to make sure these learners were not on a bigger course at the time.

In an attempt to identify measures to combat rising adult learning deficiencies, the short courses were aimed at encouraging learners back into education to study basic ICT, for example, and enrol on longer courses, while helping them find future employment.

Jill Lanning, Research Director at the Learning and Skills Network, said: “The research has proved taster courses were successful in encouraging learners back into larger learning programmes. This is positive news as it is critically important that adults are engaged in learning and training that will help them secure future employment.”

Keisha Nelson.

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