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The E-Maturity Framework has been derived, Becta claimed, from three main sources:

  • the Becta ICT Test Bed project
  • work in Wales
  • findings from early work on the ILT Health Check (a JISC RSC/Becta idea)


There does not as yet seem to be any complete public description of EMF. However, a presentation describes the main features.

EMF has five categories:

  1. Leadership and Vision
  2. Contexts (national, regional, local)
  3. Resources
  4. Learner Support
  5. Learning and Teaching

Each of these categories has a number of subcategories. There appear to be 18 of these in all. The presentation does not say, but it assumed that within each subcategory there are one or more criteria. It would also be a reasonable assumption that in view of the strong influence of MIT90s on Becta, that the criteria are scored on a 5-point scale.

Where used

Pilot phase

The pilot involved 15 colleges which were a mixture of:

  • general Further Education
  • Sixth Form
  • land-based

The Principals Briefing from RSC London (Jan/Feb 2007 – Edition 8) gives further details. On page 3 it notes that:

Updating previous benchmarking tools and building on recent work done with schools, a pilot project looking at e-Maturity in the learning and skills sector is currently underway. This is being funded directly by the LSC and managed by Becta and the RSCs. It should ultimately provide a nationally-agreed formal framework with which colleges will be able to assess their own e-maturity (through to 2010). The pilot is taking place with 20 Colleges nationally, selected predominantly from the South West, North West and London regions. There are 8 Colleges in London participating (Barnet, Christ the King 6th Form, City Lit, Greenwich Community, Havering 6th Form, Kingston, Newham 6th Form and Tower Hamlets).

Presumably the diference between the 15 and the 20 colleges mentioned is due to the fact that a few dropped out.

Main phase

Plans for this are not public. However Becta has announced several projects on e-maturity in various subsectors of the LSC sector. Furthermore a number of JISC RSCs are drafting plans for events and workshops - see the documents from East Midlands and Yorkshire and Humberside (this last for a launch in October or November 2007).

In its response to the QIA's Pursuing Excellence paper, Becta describes EMF and plans for it as follows (in paragraph 1.5):

Becta is promoting a self-review framework which underpins the achievement of key system reform activities and which we see as essential levers impacting on the main policy areas. This offers educational providers a tool to drive excellence and improve quality through self improvement; focusing on the learner, workforce, institutional and system e-maturity. Continuing work will map the emerging e-maturity framework {our italics)to the Framework for Excellence, Quality Improvement Strategy and other tools and provide models of moderated use of these tools for the sector.

In his Chief Executive’s Report to the Board, May 2007, Stephen Crowne wrote (Paper 2) that after "Piloting an e-maturity framework in 15 colleges" this "will be further developed and piloted during 2007/8". (paragraph 7). Later (paragraph 21) he notes that the "e-Maturity Framework for FE Colleges has completed a successful piloting phase" and that "plans are now being developed for the refinement of the e-Maturity Framework in light of the pilot". The financial table and risk register in this paper also have relevant entries.

Finally the Becta Operational Plan in May 2007 makes relevant comments:

Undertake a review of the suitability of the e-maturity framework in the FE and Skills sector with the aim to simplify the process, ensure easy adoption, pilot more fully in colleges that have a low level of e-maturity and consider the feasibility of promoting this in the wider FE and Skills system with a view to launch a national rollout in 2008/9 (page 23)

And on page 42 this is repeated, followed by a clause on workforce e-maturity:

Undertake a review of the level of e-maturity in the workforce by Dec 07 in partnership with Becta and LLUK to feed in to the rollout of the e-maturity framework, inform a coordinated approach to CPD of ITT providers and influence the workforce maturity model.

Relevance to UK HE

Much depends on the extent to which an overarching e-maturity approach to the (former) DfES's e-Strategy is mandated or agreed by sector agencies. However, all such cohesion was lost when the Labour government was voted out of power in the UK in 2010.

Further reading

  1. de Freitas, Sara, Think piece for Becta on the ‘e-mature learner’, March 2006, http://tre.ngfl.gov.uk/uploads/materials/24877/Think_piece_for_BectaSdF.doc.
  2. Black, Andy, How to drive and develop quality in FE using ICT: E-maturity Framework for FE colleges, presentation to BETT 2007, January 2007, http://events.becta.org.uk/content_files/corporate/resources/events/2007/jan/bett_2007/bett07_drive_develop_fe_ict.ppt.
  3. Lewis, Christine and Harrison, Bob, Transforming learning: impact on the post-16 sector, presentation to BETT 2007, January 2007, http://events.becta.org.uk/content_files/corporate/resources/events/2007/jan/bett_2007/bett07_trans_learn_post_16.ppt.

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