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Further education and skills

Becta takes the national lead in supporting the Further education and skills sector to maximise value and transform learning through the effective and creative use of technology.


Becta partners with the "School of Everything"

Becta and BIS have selected the "School of Everything" as our partner to develop a unique online service for adult learners and their tutors.

Becta and BIS (the Department for Business, Innovation and Skills) have selected the ‘School of Everything’ as our partner to develop a unique online service for adult learners and their tutors. There is huge interest in informal learning, with thousands of adults pursuing hobbies, practicing a skill or learning something new. The government identified the potential of technology to support informal adult learning in its White Paper, The Learning Revolution, and said it would put online support in place to help people find activities, events, resources and venues for informal learning. 

The School of Everything, which went live in 2008, is already an established and well used online presence, helping tutors and learners to find each other for a huge range of subjects. With over 100,000 unique visits a month, the School of Everything is a great base to build on. It has also been built using open source and using open standards, which Becta supports.

Over the next two months the School of Everything will be increasing its functionality, to provide an even better service. It has already incorporated some extra features:

  • the capacity for anyone to search for events, learning opportunities and venues etc by postcode or area
  • a School of Everything search box which can be downloaded to the websites of providers, tutors, local authorities or anyone with an interest in adult learning. This can be customised and will let users search the School of Everything through their own websites.

Other new features will include:

  • the facility for informal learning providers, groups, clubs and societies to upload courses and activities, which learners can then search
  • a directory of free or low cost venues which tutors or learners can book for their activities
  • a directory of online resources to support informal learning. Learners and tutors will be able to upload a range of content, such as links to great websites or handouts
  • the capacity to advertise and find local activities or events
  • a wide range of interactive features to allow learners and providers to rate, review and interact with material and other users and providers across the site.

For updates on this, check out the Learning Revolution Ning site at:

At the "Time to Innovate" conference on 9 March 2010, Chris Swaine gave a presentation on the School of Everything. 

The presentation is available to download in PPT (4096KB), ODP (4044KB) and PDF (1853KB)

View or download

Adobe PDF format

Related links

Printer friendly printer friendly version of this page Published: 4 February 2010