Ranked in the top 3% of the world’s universities, the University of the West of Scotland (UWS) teaches 17,000 students from all corners of the globe. From India to Singapore, one-third of UWS’s students are from outside the U.K. Career-focused with an eye to technological innovations and world-class research, 94% of UWS graduates are in work or further study within six months of graduating.
With ties to industry and an international focus, the University of the West of Scotland is invested in the future of its students. As the needs of the job market continue to shift due to digitization, how does the leading institution ensure their students are career ready and have the skills that employers are looking for?
The core mission of the UWS is to change lives, transform communities and encourage enterprise through outstanding, distinctive and progressive higher education. The problem for UWS leaders and faculty was that the pace of change due to digitization was making it difficult to keep up with developments and provide up-to-date and relevant learning content to students.
“Digital marketing is a fast-paced sector. Things are changing at a phenomenal pace, and it's a great challenge for academics to put together material. Academic procedures have a life cycle of five years, so understandably when things change within three months, it's really hard to find material on time,” according to Theofilos Tzanidis, Postgraduate Marketing Program Leader.
Not only is digital impacting curriculum at UWS, but it’s transforming the way education is delivered and packaged. “We have to do education differently. In this age of acceleration and digital disruption, do we teach our kids the same way as your mum was taught or your grandpa was taught? Well no, because it’s a different creature,” stated Matthew Frew, Senior Lecturer in Enterprise.
The challenge for UWS was to find out how they could thrive in this new environment and provide learning that engaged students in a blended environment and delivered positive career outcomes.
An early adopter of technology and digital innovations, the university were quick to understand that the key to solving their issues was to find an accredited partner that offered cutting-edge content that was regularly updated and easily integrated into their programs.
According to Daniel Turner, Assistant Dean, one of the most important traits of a UWS partner is professional recognition and affiliation. “When we approach a new degree program, we often look to partner with an industry body who will enable us to ensure that we're teaching content which is completely up to date, relevant to
In order to provide their students with industry aligned digital marketing knowledge, UWS integrated the Digital Marketing Institute’s learning content into their
Over the past 3 years, the Masters program has grown and proven to be popular among students. In tandem, digital marketing has evolved to become an integral part of the marketing activities of businesses across industries boosting the demand for graduates with relevant digital skills.
Turner believes the partnership and learning content has had a huge impact on the University of the West of Scotland. “The Digital Marketing Institute certification of our Master's program has been incredibly powerful for the university in terms of really helping us to promote and grow our reputation. It’s also had a massive impact on our student recruitment, satisfaction, and employability.”
Future plans for UWS are to develop a new continuous development program in digital along with expanding into graduate qualifications and offering a double certification or accreditation. Ultimately the partnership will continue to grow with a focus on the career outcomes and digital knowledge of students and graduates of UWS.
“The relationship was the Digital Marketing Institute is great and we're looking to see what comes next. I believe the sky's the limit,” concluded Tzanidis.