School Project in South Korea and Japan
In the face of a changed learning emphasis because of the Covid-19 pandemic, Burton and South Derbyshire College BSDC) developed an alternative of their in-person summer and winter general English language short programmes with online live delivery for students in South Korea and Japan.
At the time of initial media coverage of the Covid 19 outbreak, BSDC were expecting student groups in the UK from USA, Korea and Japan in March 2020. Despite staff from all respective establishments being keen to continue with planned UK visits, as circumstances across the globe deteriorated, all programmes were subsequently cancelled and alternative methods of delivery were needed.
In April 2020, it became clear that there would be no possibility of students travelling into the UK for Summer School, so BSDC staff began to plan an alternative of live online English language classes, which included extensive dialogue with international partners to fully understand their specific needs. Alongside this, college staff began to learn how to use the appropriate technology for the live lessons and teachers re-developed materials for online use.
Burton and South Derbyshire College (BSDC) is proud to have extensive partnerships with a range of leading organisations. With joint projects and a collaborative approach, learners are able to benefit from its partnerships first-hand through an industry-led curriculum and state of the art facilities, access to key industry contacts and the opportunity to work on live briefs for real companies.
BSDC are always investing in state of the art facilities to equip its students for the world of work. Higher Education learners have their own University Centre, vocational learners enjoy learning in real world specialist facilities, and what could prepare our learners better for a career in catering or hair and beauty than learning in our buzzing commercial restaurant and salon?
At the time of initial media coverage of the Covid 19 outbreak, BSDC was expecting incoming student groups from USA, Korea and Japan in March 2020.
Despite staff from all respective establishments being keen to continue with planned UK visits, as circumstances across the globe deteriorated, all programmes were subsequently cancelled and alternative delivery sought.
All anticipated spring programmes ceased to run and discussions about the viability of BSDC’s pending Summer School began. At the end of March 2020, all college staff began to work from home in line with UK Government guidance.
In April 2020 it became clear that there would be no possibility of students travelling into the UK for Summer School, so BSDC staff began to plan an alternative of live online English language classes, which included extensive dialogue with international partners to fully understand their specific needs.
Alongside this, BSDC college staff began to learn how to use the appropriate technology for the live lessons and teachers re-developed materials for online use.
Initial interest in Summer School developed into the first institutions confirming student numbers and timetabling around relevant time zones ensued.
At the same time, the BSDC International Team began to develop materials to produce a package of pre-recorded general English lessons. This involved staff learning how to use the recording studio software (OBS Studio and Wirecast) and editing software (Adobe Premier Pro).
The final package of 10 lessons with accompanying workbooks and optional live tutorials is available to those students who couldn’t attend the schedule live lessons, thus ensuring a product was available for all.
Going forward, it is anticipated that this package will provide BSDC with an ongoing income stream beyond the pandemic helping diversify our customer base and offer an engaging product for those learners unable to attend UK based courses.
In July and August 2020, BSDC ran the first online live general English langauge classes to 30 South Korean students from various university partners. This was a part time four week programme. The classes were well-received and feedback was incredibly positive.
As a result of this feedback, a new partner provided 20 students and another 60 students joined them for a 12 week programme, of the same English language course. In addition, a new course of English language plus Childcare was run over a 6 week period for a bespoke group of students from a college in Korea.
In November 2020, plans for an online January 2021 Winter School began. Anticipating a higher number of students, three new teachers were recruited to the team and inducted to the learning platform and software.
Materials were also developed for two new course requests (following success of English+Childcare vocational class): English language for Healthcare Industry and English language for the Service Industry. In addition, promotion began for a Japanese evening class online as live weekly lessons to replace in-College provision.
Winter School saw in excess of 100 students joining the online live classes, with further programmes confirmed to begin in March 2021. BSDC also arranged for International Ambassadors to join the live lessons in order to provide a virtual ‘buddy’ experience and host families took part in a programme of activities that provided an alternative platform for the students to practice their English speaking skills.
The results of all of this have been excellent.
BSDC has rapidly created engaging on line content that has not only continued to keep existing partners engaged throughout the global pandemic, but has diversified its customer base and engaged new ones.
BSDC have created products that have met its international partner’s specific requirements and allowed partners to access in-country Government funds, whilst allowing partners students to rapidly progress their general and vocational English language skills.
Student feedback has been exceptional with 95% of students stating the course has rapidly improved their English language capability.
These new products have helped diversify BSDC college’s income giving increased protection against the Covid pandemic; created new institutional relationships in countries of interest and helped BSDC’s existing international partners achieve their own learning outcome objectives, whilst meeting specific targets set by their funders.