Developed with, and for employers, the programme incorporates interactive e-learning, on- and off-site academic support and short residential blocks. It can support individuals wanting to progress their career within SME and global organisations, covering relevant roles in the life science supply chain from research through development and into manufacturing.
The higher apprenticeship is delivered as a blended course. Most material will be in the form of directed self-learning via the universities e-learning platform, Moodle, and face to face teaching held over the summer.
The University of Kent is at the forefront of providing science-based higher and degree apprenticeships. It was the first university to provide a bioscience-aligned degree programme for the Laboratory Scientist higher apprenticeship standard. Our expertise in e-learning delivery, together with flexible entry points, means that the programme can be delivered with the least disruption to the business.
We offer a three-year alternative degree programme, FdSc in Applied Bioscience Higher Apprenticeship, which underpins the Technician Scientist higher apprenticeship standard.
Acquisition of outcomes is achieved primarily through extensive use of e-learning materials via the University's e-learning platform Moodle. Theoretical content in the form of storyboards; video; links to related reading; and activities with feedback provided. The emphasis of the programme is to link the knowledge and learning to work-based learning and employment wherever possible.
This includes "hands-on" practical skills but also broader skills including: numeracy; IT and communication. Practical experience in the workplace is essential to develop and enhance these skills. A summer school in both the first and second year of the programme is used to provide more "hands-on" techniques/skills that are not available at work or locally.
A number of methods are used for both formative and summative assessment of these more practical skills including: practical tests or assessment at the University or in the workplace; reports or other documents such as Standard Operating Procedures (SOPs); oral plus written presentations; project plans; and the Company Based Project Report.
Formative assessment includes: progress tests; reports; portfolio entries; short essays; analysis of case studies; and presentations. Progress and attainment of learning outcomes will be determined by a variety of summative assessments including: unseen written examinations (three times a year in the workplace), some as Multiple Choice Questions (MCQs); reports including the Company Based Project; essays; portfolio entries; case studies; and presentations.
Knowledge and understanding
You gain a knowledge and understanding of:
- A broad based core covering the major elements; processes & mechanisms of life, from molecular to cellular, and from organism to community. Together with specialised in-depth study (often career related) of some aspects of the subject areas.
- Understanding of information and data, their setting within a theoretical framework, accompanied by critical analysis and assessment to enable understanding of the subject area.
- Familiarity with terminology, nomenclature and classification systems.
- Methods of acquiring, interpreting and critically analysing biological information through the use of texts, original papers, reports and data sets.
- Knowledge of a range of communication techniques and methodologies relevant to the particular discipline and the workplace.
- Engagement with some of the current developments in the biosciences and their applications, and the philosophical and ethical issues involved.
- The capacity to give a clear and accurate account of a subject, marshal arguments in a mature way and engage in debate & dialogue both with specialists and non-specialists, using appropriate scientific language.
- The ability to think independently, set tasks and solve problems.
- Understanding the applicability of the biosciences to the careers of the learners.
You gain the following intellectual skills:
- The ability to recognise and apply subject-specific theories, paradigms, concepts or principles.
- The ability to synthesize, analyze and summarise information critically, including published research or reports.
- The ability to obtain and integrate several lines of subject-specific evidence to formulate and test hypotheses.
- The application of subject knowledge and understanding to address both familiar and unfamiliar problems.
- The ability to recognise moral & ethical issues together with the appreciation of professional codes of conduct.
- An ability to develop and utilise effective project management skills.
You gain the following subject-specific skills:
- Undertake sufficient practical work to ensure competence in the basic experimental skills appropriate to the discipline under study.
- The ability to design, plan, conduct and report on investigations, which may involve primary or secondary data, arising from individual or group projects.
- The ability to obtain, record, collate and analyse data using appropriate techniques in their work discipline.
- Undertake an extensive work based project in a responsible, safe and ethical manner. Paying due attention to relevant health & safety guidelines/procedures.
Basic/Advanced Laboratory Skills (Summer School)
These are technical skills identified by employers as core to the competence of individuals working in the bioscience sector. Recognising the existence of company in-house training schemes learners will be able to evidence these technical skills through accreditation of in-house training and achievement through day-to-day activities in the workplace. In this way learners will be able to select particular technical skills they wish to enhance and/or develop to meet employer need.
You gain the following transferable skills:
- The ability to use the internet and other electronic sources critically as a means of communication and a source of information.
- A working knowledge of how to cite and reference work in an appropriate manner, including the avoidance of plagiarism.
- An ability to effectively communicate information, arguments and analysis, in a variety of forms, to specialist and non-specialist audiences.
- Develop numeracy skills and have a working appreciation of the terms: validity; accuracy; calibration; precision; replicability.
- Extensive experience of solving problems by a variety of methods, including the use of computers.
- An ability to recognise and respect the views and opinions of other team members and develop good negotiating skills.
- The ability to evaluate ones performance as an individual & team member as well as being able to assess the performance of others.
- Develop an adaptable, flexible and effective approach to study and work.
The programme aims to:
- Instil in students a sense of enthusiasm for learning which may lead to continuing professional development or pathways for lifelong learning.
- Produce graduates equipped with the skills to play an enhanced role in the Biosciences Industry, nationally.
- Educate students in the theoretical (subject specific knowledge) and practical (laboratory based) aspects of the biological sciences which relate to current and future employment needs.
- Provide students with the skills to adapt and respond positively to new developments in the workplace.
- Develop the critical, analytical, problem based learning skills required by the students in the workplace.
- Develop student’s competences in a broad range of areas relevant to their current and future employment.
- Enhance and develop the student’s interpersonal skills.