With employer and government concern about skills shortages at higher technical levels, let’s shine a spotlight on the power of colleges to create the talented thinkers and workforce needed for the UK labour market: Degree awarding powers.

NCG occupies a unique position in college-based higher education (CBHE). We have held taught degree awarding powers (TDAP) for six years. Indeed, last year marked our tenth year as an awarding institution, with our power to award foundation degrees granted in 2012.

For the past six years we have had the autonomy and flexibility to validate provision from certificate in higher education to masters (level 7), passing foundation degrees (levels 4 and 5) and bachelor’s degrees (level 6) along the way. This means we can nurture the talent of our students from entry level, studying further education, all the way through to our post-graduate master’s provision.

In a blog at the start of the autumn term, Collab Group CEO, Ian Pretty talked about the UK’s collective bias toward universities. Those working in CBHE have become quite used to the prompt “… and colleges” as we remind employer groups and government alike about our level 4, 5, 6 universities “… and colleges”. We are used to sharpening our elbows as we maintain space in higher education following the removal of student number control and the drift of universities into the college-based higher education space.

But hopefully, times are changing.

Read Jon's full article in FE Week