Using CENTURY to get exam ready at Gordon Franks

Posted on 16th March 2023

Posted by CENTURY

Estimated reading time: 5 minutes


Gordon Franks Training is an independent training provider (ITP) based in the heart of Birmingham, offering a range of apprenticeships, traineeships, and commercial training programmes that aim to start or enhance careers and have been specially designed to develop the key skills and behaviours needed to be successful in employment. We hosted a Q&A session with a number of tutors at the company who answered the questions below.

How have you found CENTURY so far?

Our tutors took a little time switching over from our previous systems to the new interface, but once they understood how CENTURY works they found it very user-friendly and are much more comfortable now. Our Functional Skills tutors use it the most. They feel very confident with it, and have really gained a lot from the Q&A sessions with the CENTURY account manager.

When we take new learners on, they must complete the diagnostic assessment for the level they will be taking the exam in (1 or 2). We require them to achieve a score of 45% or higher to be accepted onto their course. Learners who fail to meet this requirement at Level 2 may be accepted onto the course at Level 1 to work their way up.

We have begun setting our curriculum around CENTURY nuggets that learners have to complete. The tutors meet with the managing director and heads of department every month to discuss progress. They look at how many of the set nuggets the learners have completed and their average scores. Some learners use CENTURY for upskilling too: while their course may only require a Level 1 qualification, if they have previously achieved it then they will be assigned to Level 2 so they keep progressing.

The biggest issue the learners face is if they lack the time to complete their nuggets on CENTURY while at work. We encourage them to try and remind their employers to give them time for CENTURY in line with their expected study hours, but in a busy workplace time can be lacking. The flexibility of CENTURY’s platform, especially the fact it is easily accessible on a mobile device or a phone, is helping learners to find time more easily to complete their nuggets alongside their work requirements.

How does CENTURY help with preparing for the exam?

CENTURY is helping the learners, it’s really good. When they do a nugget, they get a percentage score. If they do really well, then they don't need our support. So if they do the nuggets we set for them, I can just focus on the students who got low percentage scores and review those, which is really helpful. By logging the percentages students get on each nugget and finding an average, you can see what level they're working at. 

The students that do the nuggets that I've set them will pass. And I've found CENTURY is really helpful for those learners that use it properly, because I can then just pick out any issues, rather than waiting for them to tell me things I already know. 

Overall, there's never going to be enough time, there never has been. But I know that if they do the nuggets I've set for them, then we can just focus on their problem areas when they have one-to-one sessions with me. From there I can see whether they do need a lesson or a bit more support on a topic. So CENTURY has just made all our students more likely to pass the exam in the end.

Does CENTURY help you to understand when students are exam-ready?

We make a decision when we think the students are ready to take the exam, based on how they've worked towards the curriculum that we have set up on CENTURY. It shows us how they're progressing towards the curricula, their average score and their percentage. That’s based on the nuggets they have to complete independently, but sometimes we do one-to-one sessions with our learners too. 

Some of our learners will go onto CENTURY every day and complete the nuggets, but some others need a lot of support which can be a challenge but it’s working. We discussed in our staff meeting that we were really struggling with Level 2 Maths, because the goalposts are too high at the moment, but we’ve had four achievers in the last six weeks, which shows the curriculum our tutors have set up on CENTURY is working now. Some learners will achieve sooner, some will take the full 15 months, and especially with maths, some learners just need more support. CENTURY is helping us to deliver that support.

Learn more here about how CENTURY is helping Independent Training Providers supercharge their teaching and learning.

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