OCR is now offering a new tool to support training providers, schools and colleges to drive up their maths and English skills.
The new online platform, called TiME (Training in Maths and English), aims to motivate more learners to make progress towards Level 2/GCSE maths and English by offering them ‘mini soap’ content as part of a course which can be taught through a combination of online and face-to-face teaching.
OCR has tapped into the expertise of TV and film producers as well as professional actors to create mini drama series to bring English and maths learning to life with real life stories. From ‘The Birthday Party’ to ‘Time to Get Fit’, (see right), the quirky storylines are designed to engage those who are traditionally hard to reach and provide a springboard to learning. Taster videos can be viewed on YouTube.
The TiME platform is packed with content that can be used in the classroom or for online teaching by tutors who may not have taught English or maths up to Level 2 before, or who are unfamiliar with new qualifications such as the 2015 GCSE Maths and English.
Liam Sammon, OCR Director of Education and Commercial Services, explained: “TiME has been designed and tested not just to overcome poor English and maths skills but to develop communication and employability skills at the same time.”
He continued: “We wanted to avoid some of the pitfalls of online learning however. The learner is at the heart of the process with courses in English and maths constructed around a series of mini soap narratives, each set in a realistic context, to motivate learners who may be disenchanted with studying. There are frequent opportunities to reward progress and the modular structure means content can be expanded and revisited. Every learner joins a supportive online community so they do not feel isolated. Motivation is key.”
Learners on the TiME programme are first given a diagnostic test of their literacy and numeracy skills. They then progress onto a four-week introductory module to familiarise themselves with the course content and with online learning in general. This is followed by two six-week courses specifically in English or maths.
As each course is mapped to the relevant OCR Functional Skills, Cambridge Progression or GCSE qualifications, every learner can focus on achieving a nationally-recognised qualification.
East Kent College is currently using TiME with unemployed young learners. Nick Holbrook-Sutcliffe, Director of Development and Marketing commented: “This intuitive platform is unique in the way it enables young people to engage with English and maths. By focusing on the need to motivate the students and contextualise the learning, TiME represents a real evolution in blended learning and will change how English and maths are delivered.”
For enquiries about TiME, including trial access, call OCR on 02476 851509.