British FE takes its brand overseas

28th January 2000 at 00:00
THE GOVERNMENT this week unveiled its "brand footprint" to sell further and higher education to countries overseas.

Baroness Blackstone, education minister, launched "Education UK" - its promotional campaign to double the number of international FE students (an extra 25,000) by 2005. It wants to attract an extra 50,000 higher education students by the same year.

Since the initiative was launched by the Prime Minister last June, the British Council has been talking to consultants and commissioning research on what appeals to international students and what puts them off. It has conducted postal surveys and spoken to international students already here, as well as those who chose one of Britain's main competitors - Australia and the United States.

"We were trying to encapsulate the student perception of what we offer, compared to Australia and the USA," said Piera Gerrard, deputy director of the education counselling service at the British Council.

"UK quality is recognised as beyond dispute," she said. "We also have future recognition which means that our qualifications will mean something in the students' own countries. But we are seen as elitist, confident but possibly et in our ways."

The campaign will try to show how the UK has changed. "We are traditional, but in a dynamic way. We offer prospective students the opportunity "to be the best that you can be,''' said Ms Gerrard.

Eight countries are being targeted initially, including Malaysia, Singapore, Hong Kong, China, Russia, India, Brazil and Japan.

British Council offices throughout the world will be promoting Education UK, with posters and brochures adapted for each country and sent to schools and colleges. There will be advertising on buses and the London Underground. The council has produced three videos and there will also be exhibitions, visits and invitations for parents to attend meetings.

A range of products will say what courses are available - but will not categorise courses according to each sector - "so they will not have to understand what the FE sector is," said Ms Gerrard.

International education is worth pound;7 billion to the UK economy.

"But there is the other dimension of bringing a global aspect to UK education, providing a different quality of experience," Ms Gerrard said.

For further information the website address is: www.educationuk.org


Subscribe

To access this content and the full TES archive, subscribe now.

View subscriber offers

Comments

Get TES online and delivered to your door – for less than the price of a coffee

Save 33% off the cover price with this great subscription offer. Every copy delivered to your door by first-class post, plus full access to TES online and the TES app for just £1.90 per week.
 
Subscribers also enjoy a range of fantastic offers and benefits worth over £270:

  • Discounts off TES Institute courses
  • Access over 200,000 articles in the TES online archive
  • Free Tastecard membership worth £79.99
  • Discounts with Zipcar, Buyagift.com, Virgin Wines and other partners
Order your low-cost subscription today