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  • 28 Jun 2016Trialling New Teaching Technology

    Our Principal, Anthony Bravo, spoke to FE Week recently about trialling new teaching technology. 

    His article reflected on the performance of the interactive learning software BCoT has been trailling and a new two-year study into the effects of blended learning. 

    To read the full article, click here

  • 27 Jun 2016Referendum Statement

    EU Referendum result

    An open letter from the Principal and Chair of Governors.

    On Friday morning we learnt that the UK electorate has voted to leave the European Union (EU).  After forty years, this is an historic event. 

    Not surprisingly, BCoT staff and students will have questions about how the decision will affect us.  In the short term, we must all adopt a ‘business as usual’ approach until things become clearer.  We cannot say what the medium or long-term implications will be for further and higher education, for Apprenticeships or for the employers we work with.

    We do know that the UK will remain a full member of the EU until the negotiations to withdraw are completed. The UK Government will decide when it wants to trigger Article 50, the part of the EU's Treaty of Lisbon which sets guidelines on how a country can withdraw from the EU.  Article 50 specifies a two-year limit to reach agreement starting from the day formal application is made - although the complexity of the negotiations might well see this deadline extended.  

    A referendum result is not legally binding so it is likely that the UK Government will look to pass a formal application to withdraw through Parliament in order to trigger Article 50.  In the light of the Prime Minister's announcement to resign, how soon it is triggered will depend on whether the UK has a government which can command a majority in the House of Commons.

    The UK's future relationship with the EU will be negotiated separately to the withdrawal agreement, with careful transition arrangements which could take up to a decade to put in place fully.

    While it is early days, I want to address some immediate questions:

    Existing EU students and applicants for 2016/17: at this point, there is no change to their immigration status, access to loans or contractual terms and conditions.

    Non-UK EU staff: at this point, there is no change to their immigration status and no change to the contractual terms and conditions of EU nationals holding BCoT contracts.

    Apprenticeships: at this point, again, there is no change to current operations or processes. However, in a statement on Friday, Skills Minister Nick Boles did suggest that plans to introduce the Apprenticeship Levy may have to be delayed.  We know that all parties have committed to the Apprenticeship targets so we wait with interest what this delay might mean in reality.

    Whatever our personal views, we must bow to the democratic will of the British people and prepare for our future. It is clear that there will be challenges ahead and it is our duty as an institution to rise to them. For example, it is likely that our students will leave us to join what will potentially be a very difficult economy and employment market, post-Brexit, so our focus on employability skills will become even more vital.

    BCoT’s SMT will do all in our power to keep you fully informed as the picture becomes clearer. The Association of Colleges (AoC) is already lobbying on behalf of the sector and has stated that “the Government must make it clear as soon as possible how it will continue to fund education and training for the good of everyone”. 

    For my part, I look forward to working with staff and students here as, together, we seek to make the right decisions for the College.

    Respectful; Ready; Safe.  Whatever our personal views of the Referendum result, we remind staff and students that Britain is a democracy and the result should be respected.  BCoT does not tolerate any abusive language or behaviour in relation to personal beliefs or political views; this includes views of the Referendum.

    Anthony Bravo, Principal & Chief Executive                    Lynne George, Chair of Governors

  • 27 Jun 2016The Mad Hatter's Tea Party at BCoT

     Guests tumbled down the rabbit hole recently to enjoy a Mad Hatter inspired tea party at BCoT.

    The event, organised and set up by Level 3 Catering and Hospitality students was held in aid of St. Michaels Hospice, as well as contributing to a unit in their course.  

    They prepared a number of delicious treats including sweet and savoury scones, pastries, sandwiches and a number of appetisers for guests to tuck into.

    Local businesses also helped out, donating a number of gifts for a raffle and supplying the décor for the event.

    Forty five guests attended the tea party; some dressed to impress in their Alice in Wonderland themed costumes.

    Student Daniel Stickland, who helped to organise the party, said “I am really proud of myself, and everyone involved. We raised £270 for our chosen charity, which is such a great feeling.”

    Restaurant Manager, Vicki Quilter, was delighted with the success of event.

    “It was fantastic effort by all and I couldn’t be happier. They did everything themselves, from coming up with a theme to preparing the food. They all worked as a team to make this successful, it was great.”


  • 22 Jun 2016Students showcase incredible talents

    The outstanding talents of BCoT’s Art and Design students were showcased at the College’s 33rd annual Fashion and Art Exhibition.

    Several months of hard work and preparation culminated in a catwalk show and Art Exhibition featuring truly awe-inspiring work by students from:  

    Level 1 BTEC Diploma in Art & Design

    Level 2 BTEC First Extended Certificate in Art & Design

    Level 3 BTEC 90 Credit Diploma in Art & Design

    ABC Diploma in Foundation Art & Design

    BA (Hons) Textiles for Fashion

    Access to Higher Education Art & Design – New for 2016/17

    This year’s Fashion Show proved to be as dazzling as ever, with students wowing the audience with their inspirational and extravagant designs.  These included weave, silk, knit and printed fabrics.

    The Art Exhibition was a visual display of innovative and creative work, which for some students was three years in the making.

    Julie Nelson, Head of Creative Faculty said:

    “The exceptional work on display represents not only the outstanding creativity and talents of our students, but also the grit and determination it takes to produce such amazing collections. This year our students have continued to meet the high expectations of the College, resulting in exotic, unique and amazing designs.” 

    Julie also praised the dedication, commitment and hard work of all the teaching staff, adding:

    “They have contributed so much time and energy in engaging and developing our students to ensure they reach their full potential – they are truly inspirational!”


  • 16 Jun 2016Fashion student creates winning design

    A Textiles and Fashion student from BCoT has been selected as the winner of a competition to design artwork for a car.

    Zoe Taylor, a second year student on the BA (Hons) Textiles for Fashion programme at BCoT, took part in the competition along with her classmates following a brief from the Eden Fiat dealership in Basingstoke.  Their designs had to be eye-catching and unique, so Zoe took her inspiration from a college trip to Venice and based them on the stunning Venetian architecture. She said:

    “I am so thrilled to see my design on the Fiat – it looks really pretty with all the intricate detailing and just as I’d hoped it would. I have really enjoyed this project and it’s taught me a great deal about how to work with my designs in a business environment and stick to deadlines!”

    Zoe said winning the competition has also been a great boost for her career prospects, adding:

    “I have another year to go at BCoT and when I finish I would really like to work in print design, interiors or stationery. I didn’t realise I could draw well until recently, but working on the Fiat wrap has given me greater confidence in my own ability as a designer.  I’m now hoping for more commissions and looking forward to a great final year at the College completing my degree.”



  • 07 Jul 2016Music & Media Showcase

    BCoT's Music & Media Department are holding a Showcase of student work at the Willis Museum.

    Following a private viewing on 6th July, the Showcase will be open to the public from 6-9pm on Thursday 7th July.

    Tickets cost £1 on the door or can be booked in advance via vicki.soanes@bcot.ac.uk

    MM Showcase.jpg


  • 24 Aug 2016Access courses Open Day

     Access courses Open Day, 24th August, 2-4pm. 


    Are you thinking about a degree but need a ‘leg up’ to help you get there? Come along to our Open Day and find out how Access courses are designed just for you.

    What are Access courses?

    Access to HE Diplomas are a well-established set of qualifications designed for people who do not have the qualifications to enter a university level course but who do have life experience and a willingness to learn. 

    What Access courses can you study at BCoT? 
    Are they nationally recognised?

    Access to HE Diplomas are now well established as national qualifications which allow students without traditional qualifications to apply for degree courses and enter university. They are regulated by the Quality Assurance Agency for higher education (QAA) which ensures the quality of degree courses at universities.

    Will an Access qualification enable me to gain a place at a university?

    Whilst you are on your Access course, you can apply to universities using the UCAS application process. For one year courses starting in September this means applications are usually made at the end of your first term. Universities will process your application and if they offer you a place this will be based upon successful completion of an Access Diploma and it will be increasingly common for offers to include specific grade requirements for some or all of the Level 3 units studied on the course.

    About the course
    • Courses start in September 2016 and run four days a week from 9.30-3.00pm.
    • Courses cover both generic learning skills such as research and assignment writing, as well as vocational specific subjects.
    Entry Requirements

    Applicants should be over 19 and have GCSE English and Maths at grade C or above or our Pre-Access Certificate and a minimum of grade C English Language.

    Course Fees
    • Art & Design - £3900
    • Biology with Chemistry - £3300
    • Nursing & Healthcare - £3300
    • Psychology - £3000
    • Social Work - £3000


    For further information please email nextyear@bcot.ac.uk or call 01256 306296.




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