The training program, which is a completely free, self-paced course, will be put onto a separate page on ICEF’s platform, aiming to spread the course’s benefits as far and wide as possible.
The Agent Training and Engagement Hub was launched in December 2022 by the British Council to help education advisors and agents learn more about the UK as a top international study destination.
The platform includes information on what international students will need to study at English language schools, independent schools, colleges or higher education providers.
Jacqui Jenkins, global programme lead on international student mobility for the British Council said the move was by no means exclusive – but that ICEF’s partnership, while not commercial, was a great step forward.
“This is totally about amplification – it’s open,” she said, speaking with The PIE News.
“It’s about making sure that all agents that are sending to the UK and supporting students with the UK journey have access to the knowledge and awareness, so that the student has the best experience.
“We want to basically get the message out there that there really are no barriers [to the course],” she added.
The course will be available on the platform as one of ICEF’s roster of “destination” courses on ICEF Academy, and will be the exact same course experience as it is when taken outside of ICEF’s website.
“We’ve worked very closely with the British Council to ensure the certification process remains smooth, efficient and integrated.
“Upon completing the course and receiving certification, graduates will have the option to explore the British Council’s Agent Engagement Hub for further UK recruitment support,” Markus Badde, CEO at ICEF told The PIE.
“ICEF Academy has an existing learner-base of almost 130,000, and this year alone we have seen over 2,000 new course graduates.
“With the UK now also being a key study destination within our course portfolio we expect to see it become one of our most popular courses,” Badde predicted.
The British Council hopes to work with more platforms in the future to continue amplifying the course and its benefits to agents wanting to send students to the UK.
ICEF is notably SCORM compliant – having the necessary technical safeguards in place to be able to host the course – something that would be necessary for any future partners, Jenkins said.
Helen Obaje, senior EDI program manager at the British Council and product lead on the training program, told The PIE the ICEF platform and the British Council’s program existing in the same place is “a great benefit for agents”.
“It’s really about [British Council] also recognising agents as critical partners within the ecosystem”
“There are agents who only concentrate on one study destination – or a very small number of destinations. For them, all these courses now are in the one place – so if they didn’t know how to access one or more of them before they’ve got that all there,” Obaje noted.
“It’s really about [the British Council] also recognising agents as critical partners within the ecosystem,” Jenkins added.
“I think most universities and students recognise how valuable they are and so it’s important that we as an organisation – the national bodies – recognise their importance too.”