05 Oct 2009

National Skills Academy endorses OU Foundation Degree in Financial Services

The Foundation Degree in Financial Services, a new qualification from The Open University (OU) has been endorsed by The National Skills Academy for Financial Services (NSAFS) as an innovative way of opening access to financial services careers.

Under a Memorandum of Understanding agreed between the OU and NSAFS, the Skills Academy will shortly begin offering the Foundation Degree as a career development route for employers and encourage Further Education colleges in its network to link to the OU to deliver the course at a local level – breaking new ground for the OU.

Ian Fribbance, Senior Lecturer in Economics at The Open University - who has led the development of the Foundation Degree - said: “This model of collaborative teaching where OU materials will be delivered within the Skills Academy network throughout England and through other colleges, such as Neath Port Talbot College in Wales, is a new way of working for us. It opens up the qualification to a whole new set of students and it is exciting to see new partners come on board and help us reach out to those working in this crucial sector.

“With the current increased emphasis on regulation and training, there has never been a more crucial time to launch a qualification like this. We already have students enrolled for the new qualifications and financial services employers are showing interest.”

Sylvia Perrins, CEO of NSAFS, said: “The National Skills Academy for Financial Services is pleased to endorse this Foundation Degree believing it to enhance and develop skills much needed by the industry at large. It recognises existing professional qualifications and can incorporate these as well as content specifically developed with employers.

“The Degree offers a realistic work based pathway into higher education for non-graduates and will be available across the UK, through some of our NSAFS network of training providers.”

The new Foundation Degree launches in Autumn 2009 and registration is open now.

Notes to Editors
The new OU Foundation Degree in Financial Services is also supported by fdf (Foundation Degree Forward) and recognised by the Financial Services Skills Council.

About the National Skills Academy for Financial Services
The National Skills Academy for Financial Services is a registered charity which was created with the express purpose of delivering world-class education and training aligned with employer needs in the financial services industry to people of all age groups and learning backgrounds, helping them to prepare for and develop financial services careers.
For more about the National Skills Academy for Financial Services or to get involved with us see: or email

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