About the Project
Reference Number: RS/20/15
Applications are invited for a PhD (via MPhil) studentship within the Lancashire School of Business and Enterprise to This studentship will discover whether the aim of widening participation for BAME Degree Apprentices is being realised. The studentship is tenable for up to 3 years full time [subject to satisfactory progress]. Both Home/EU and international Applicants may apply but will be required to pay the tuition fees at the appropriate rate (Current rates Home/EU £4400 per year, International £14950 per year). The studentship will provide an annual stipend of £15235 per year (up to 3 years) (subject to satisfactory progress)
It is expected the successful applicant will commence 1st February 2021.
Are we there yet? Reviewing the impact of undertaking a Degree Apprenticeship for Black, Asian and Minority Ethnic (BAME) employees.
This studentship will focus on the latest offering in Higher Education, Degree Apprenticeships. Launched in 2015 as a new approach to closing the skills and productivity gap faced by the UK, Higher and Degree Apprenticeships are the work based approach to gaining both a degree and a career. This approach aims to place the employer in the driving seat from both the funding and content perspective, with the aim of both enhancing the workforce and levelling the playing field in many ways, including participation by underrepresented groups.
Some government reports indicate that this move towards improving the landscape is failing to meet its original objectives. A House of Commons (2019) report highlights that this failure to meet targets (now recovering), has resulted in underrepresented groups missing out on opportunities. Conversely, an update report by the Apprenticeship Diversity Champions Network (2019: p6) highlights that apprenticeship figures have shown an increase in BAME uptake, increasing to 11.24% representation in apprenticeships. Most recently, Mutlib (2020), highlights that the ‘… real impact must be measured after a degree apprentice graduates finding what influence this has on job role, salary and subsequently promoting it to prospective apprentices from under-represented communities.’
The reports and research are starting to raise questions about the progress that Degree Apprenticeships have made within this group. Suggested areas ripe for exploration within this studentship are (but not limited to):
• The apprenticeship “ethnicity gap’ and the reasons for the lack of diversity among apprentices which is more evident amongst young apprentices and in certain sectors.
• The perspective and experiences of BAME apprentices to consider their influences and motivation for choosing an apprenticeship plus learn about their experience of the training and support.
• The employers’ perspective; are apprenticeships an effective recruitment mechanism to diversify the workforce; what are the barriers and how might they be overcome.
Degree Apprenticeships are now 5 years old, the first cohorts have completed their studies and moved on either within their apprenticeship organisation or to new roles with new companies. This studentship will discover whether the aim of widening participation for BAME Degree Apprentices is being realised. We invite you to explore this new and emerging area, to start the process of measuring the BAME experience within Degree Apprenticeships, the challenges, the successes with a view to informing the academic community of the developments and to contribute to an emerging body of knowledge.
Interested applicants are strongly encouraged to contact Francesca Walker-Martin ([Email Address Removed] ) to discuss this opportunity and the project before applying.
For the application form and full details go to: http://www.uclan.ac.uk/research/study/studentships.php .
Completed application forms along with a detailed proposal of no more than 1200 words, outlining the focus of your study, proposed methodology and expected outcomes should be returned to the Research Student Registry email [Email Address Removed] quoting the studentship reference number RS/20/15.
Closing Date: 30th November 2020
Proposed Interview Date: W/C 14th December 2020
CURRENT UCLAN RESEARCH STUDENTS WILL NOT BE ELIGIBLE TO APPLY FOR THIS RESEARCH STUDENTSHIP
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