University Conference | 23 and 24th February 2021

Destination Italy - Increasing University recruitment through internationalisation and employability pathways


23rd February 2021

9:00 – 10:00 Welcome and Plenary
Internationalisation in Italian Universities: opportunities, challenges and a case study

In this opening session, Professor Emeritus Fabio Rugge will comment on the increasing trend of internationalisation in Universities in Italy and the opportunities and challenges this trend creates. 

10:00 – 10.45 Webinar 1
Best practice guidance and a case study in international student recruitment

With tomorrow’s university applicants actively re-rationalising UK- based study in light of Brexit and the global pandemic, the appeal of quality English-medium undergraduate programmes closer to home, has never been greater.

What has not changed however, is the appeal of International A level, International GCSE (and their UK equivalents) in schools around the world, for their ‘gold-standard’ pathways into global higher education.

This session will introduce you to Edexcel’s International A Level and GCSE qualifications and the required tools to supercharge your recruitment approach in an increasingly uncertain world.

Join us to find out how to build inclusive and visible admission policies that provide International and UK curriculum students and their counsellors the required assurances to choose your institution.

11.15 – 12-00 Webinar 2
How artificial intelligence-scored assessment supports successful international and local student recruitment

Language Assessment is at a crossroads. Not, as some people would imagine, with the implementation of new technology. Much of that technology, including Artificial Intelligence, has already been with us for over 10 years. The crossroads is with blending learning outcomes and study options. Giving students the opportunities and pathways into higher levels of learning and job opportunities.

The validity of assessment scoring is crucial to supporting successful international and local student recruitment. In this seminar we will look at how particular tests are constructed so they take advantage of Educational Technology and cutting-edge Artificial Intelligence applications. We will look at how integrated skills assessments, combined with machine scoring, increase the accuracy of tests supporting the key decisions which are made for successful international and local student recruitment.

We will question current models of assessment and ask if there are better ways in which we can assess young people, to give them a truer picture of their language ability, so that they are able to fulfil their dreams either in the international language space or in locally based institutions.

14:00 – 15.00 Plenary Session
Italian University Language Centres (AICLU): Current actions and European perspectives in an International dimension

This presentation will offer an overview of the actions implemented by AICLU, the Italian Association of University Language Centres. In particular, it will highlight its mission and objectives and the many achievements reached throughout the years. Integration of cultures, multilingualism, internationalization are some of the key concepts put forward by the Association and the University Language Centres (ULCs) which belong to it.

The presentation will also briefly focus on the contribution that ULCs offer in the fields of didactic for language learning, ICT, research on linguistic and pedagogical issues, autonomous learning, project planning, assessment of language competences. But above all, one of the most important objectives that AICLU wants to perceive is the continuing cooperation among members.This is easily created through a network of common actions, also shared with CercleS -the European Confederation of Language Learning in Higher Education-, aimed at transferring knowledge of languages and awareness of cultures to the new generations. The presentation will be delivered partly in English and Italian.

15.00 – 15.45 Webinar 3
Case studies and best practice guidance in international and local student recruitment for EMI* courses*

English Medium InstructionIn this session Christopher Morley will look at best practice guidance in international and local student recruitment for EMI courses and we will look at a case study from Bocconi University Milan with Mario Tabarini.

16.15 – 17:00 Webinar 4
Why research and validity matter to Pearson Test of English

In this session we will take you through how we use research to design our tests and ensure that they will be fair to all students. We will also describe how we maintain Assessment Validity, sharing the criteria we monitor and some of our recent research findings.


24th February 2021

9.00 – 10.00 Plenary Session
Future skills: what will make our students employable in 2030?

A key role for educators is to prepare students for the workplace, but at a time of great change in job markets, how do we know where to focus our efforts? Much has been written about the impact of technology and automation on society and work. Some jobs, it is suggested, will all but disappear and today’s students will be applying for roles which currently don’t exist. In the past year, the impact of the Covid-19 pandemic has worsened the global scenario, leading to an actual disemployability; a structural difficulty in employment integration and reintegration. How then do we prepare our learners for such future uncertainties? What are the skills of the future that will ensure a place in tomorrow’s job market?

This presentation looks at research into the skills needed for jobs in 2030 and beyond – both globally and specifically in Italy. The research provides useful information to policy makers and to those who are in charge of the planning of tertiary education and regional training courses as well as for the development of actions and policies to reduce the skill mismatch between job supply and demand.

10.00 – 10.45 Webinar 1
Global Scale of English: The importance of standards in language teaching and assessment

The Common European Framework of Reference for Languages (CEFR) has become a standard framework of reference for English language teaching and assessment around the world. As pressure increases on educational institutions and ministries of education to prepare global citizens of the future, few would dispute the benefits that standards in teaching and assessment can bring. Equally, however, there needs to be evidence that such standards meet the specific needs of teachers and learners in different contexts.This presentation looks at the development of the Global Scale of English (GSE), a proficiency framework that builds on and extends the CEFR to account for the needs of more learners, including those studying English with an eye to future employment. The presenter will look at the research carried out with teachers from over 50 countries around the world into defining a teaching and assessment framework that addresses some of the limitations of the CEFR. The focus will be on English for Professional purposes and the free online resources that are available to support curriculum and course design as well as lesson planning.

11.15 – 12-00 Webinar 2
English assessment for employability

Competence in a second or other language is a vital element in many people’s career paths and success in the workplace. Some jobs, for example international sales or roles in language education require a very high level of proficiency in a second language. But, nowadays, there is a drip down of those requirements to an even larger number of job roles. English language competence in particular, is highly prized and essential for many roles in an advanced economy. Fewer and fewer roles can be successfully performed without a certain level of language proficiency.

In this presentation, we will look specifically at tests of language proficiency produced by Pearson. These tests are part of the journey through different levels of attainment at school and university, leading to lifelong learning and assessment for job roles and employability. Education often equips us with the basic

building blocks of language, but it is usually through our own work and motivation that we are able to reach the levels of language ability needed for specific employment roles.

The presentation will show how well constructed English language tests, giving rich feedback, can help support people as they move through the important lifetime cycles of study and work.