The gap between college and university systems across the UK is growing, according to a leading expert who says institutions north of the Border have embraced a model very different from the “market-based” approach in England.
Ewart Keep, Professor (Emeritus) of Education, Training and Skills at Oxford University, argues that the recently published Scottish Funding Council (SFC) review will aim to evolve the tertiary system here towards a more “coordinated, cooperative” structure.
In a short analysis piece published in Wonkhe, Prof Keep, who is also an SFC board member, says this would mean the separation between further and higher education becoming increasingly “blurred” over time and “replaced by a spectrum of varied post-compulsory offers”.
He notes that England has instead opted for “quasi-markets”, overseen by regulators, in which the expectation is that student choice will drive competition between institutions.
His piece, which was written in a personal capacity, states: “These national differences in turn reflect broader ideological schisms and priorities that frame the environments within which education policy is being developed.
“Scotland has a long-term economic and industrial development strategy, supported by three regional economic development…