Linking London | News | 17 October 2019: Event report – HE in FE Practitioner Group Meeting

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HE in FE Practitioner Group Meeting

The first HE in FE Practitioner Group Meeting of the academic year chaired by David Hillier, Assistant Principal - HE and Apprenticeships, South Thames Colleges Group was held on 17th October. The meeting featured a presentation from Philippa O’Brien from Barnet and Southgate College and was followed by a HE in FE Research Group Meeting where we were joined by Dr Karima Kadi-Hanifi who gave a talk on the research undertaken in College Based Higher Education.


After a warm welcome from David Hillier, South Thames Colleges Group, delegates discussed the latest news and developments in college HE, including OfS news and registrations and an update on the Morley and Kensington and Chelsea College merger.

Following this, delegates heard from Philippa O’Brien, Higher Level Skills Manager at Barnet and Southgate College. Philippa presented on feedback from the recent QAA visit to Barnet and Southgate College and gave details on the OfS conditions what they asked for/wanted to see and the timeline of the review. Philippa also gave the group advice/recommendations and gave the group the opportunity to ask any questions.

Following a short break, a roundtable update then followed where partners discussed and shared higher education related news such as, HE student recruitment news, course changes and merger updates.

David Hillier then led an engaging Chatham House Rule discussion where delegates discussed current issues with college based HE in London, relationship with the OfS and ways forward which partners contributed their ideas and suggestions.

Sue Betts then led a discussion for ideas for future meetings and gave an opportunity for the group give feedback and make any suggestions.

Following a lunch, the HE in FE Research Meeting took place. Dr Karima Kadi-Hanifi from Newman University, Birmingham talked to the group about research undertaken in College Based Higher Education as well as setting the national context. Karima talked about what kind of research is happening in CBHE and highlighted that research in FE is not as recognised/visible (e.g. doesn’t go through the Research Excellence Framework (REF) unless in collaboration with university researchers). There is need to recognise and support this sector. The group discussed a few points such as:

  • problematising the idea of the non-traditional student and the different expectations in the economy and society. Will every generation have higher expectations of needing more qualifications to go along the same route?
  • Imposter Syndrome – does FE provide a safe space where you feel comfortable in your learning experience?
  • If there is any aspect of thinking of CBHE as an international product.

The next HE in FE meeting will take place in late February/March - date and time TBC. All future events information can be found here.

Presentations and meeting note

To view the presentations and meeting note from the day please click here. This link will take you to the partners' area of the website. You must be a Linking London member to access this section of the website and you will need your login name and password. If you do not know your login name and password, then please email


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