Partnership and workplace learning in the UK: pioneering work at British Telecommunications plc

Christopher Stoney (Christopher Stoney is a Lecturer in The Management School, Imperial College, London.)

Journal of Workplace Learning

ISSN: 1366-5626

Publication date: 1 March 2002


Explores British Telecommunication plc’s (BT) partnership with the Communication Workers Union (CWU) and examines its significance for the development of a degree level programme of workplace learning. The BSc in Computer Science is now being delivered part‐time to 500 BT employees, none of whom have previous experience of post‐secondary education. In particular, the role of the union in establishing the course is examined, along with the programme’s philosophy and aims, its content, funding and efficacy. The case study incorporates semi‐structured interviews with BT managers, CWU representatives, academics responsible for designing and delivering the course and a round‐table discussion with BT employees currently taking the degree course. By pulling these views and experiences together the paper is able to assess this programme of formal workplace learning and identify issues, strengths and weaknesses that should be of interest to those politicians, managers, HR professionals and union representatives currently interested in the future of workplace learning.



Stoney, C. (2002), "Partnership and workplace learning in the UK: pioneering work at British Telecommunications plc", Journal of Workplace Learning, Vol. 14 No. 2, pp. 58-67.

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Copyright © 2002, MCB UP Limited

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