Improving college effectiveness: raising quality and achievement.

Bridget Somekh, Andy Convery, Jean Delaney, Roy Fisher, John Gray, Stan Gunn, Andrew Henworth, Loraine Powell

Research output: Book/ReportCommissioned report


Work undertaken to improve the effectiveness of the United Kingdom's schools and further education (FE) sectors was identified and assessed in a study entailing four data collection methods: literature review; questionnaire administered to all FE college principals in England and Wales; expert seminar and face-to-face interviews with high-level representatives of all major agencies responsible for the schools, higher education (HE), and FE sectors; and focus group and telephone interviews with quality managers in a sample of colleges. Although the questionnaire elicited a response rate of only 18 %, the respondents were representative of the FE sector as a whole. Among the main obstacles to improving sector effectiveness identified by the principals were the following: lack of finance and funding;lack of management systems and training for middle managers; and need for lecturing staff to adopt new teaching methods. Confusion over the terms"effectiveness" and "improvement" was discovered. It was concluded that systematic quantitative and qualitative research based on a theoretical framework clarifying its relationship to Further Education Funding Council policy and practice is critical to future work to improve the schools, FE,and HE sectors. (Appended are the following: research methodology,bibliography that contains 125 references, and information about the study's authors.)
Original languageEnglish
Place of PublicationLondon
PublisherFurther Education Development Agency
Number of pages104
Publication statusPublished - 1999

Publication series

PublisherFurther Education Development Agency
ISSN (Print)1460 7034


Cite this

Somekh, B., Convery, A., Delaney, J., Fisher, R., Gray, J., Gunn, S., ... Powell, L. (1999). Improving college effectiveness: raising quality and achievement. . (12 ed.) London : Further Education Development Agency.