In recent years, there has been a growing trend in academia and industry alike to contextualise entry requirements for certain programmes or jobs. This is often done through the use of aptitude tests and interviews, allowing employers to assess a candidate’s qualifications and identify any gaps that need to be filled in order for them to be successful in their role. While this trend is undoubtedly beneficial for both employers and candidates, it can have some unintended consequences. For example, if an employer only accepts applicants who have passed an aptitude test, they are likely to fill their vacancy with candidates who are most compatible with that particular test. This can result in a lack of diversity at the company, as well as a reduction in opportunities for candidates who don’t fit into the mould of what an employer is looking for.
What Can Be Contextualised?
According to the article, contextualising entry requirements means taking into account a range of factors such as whether the applicant is from a disadvantaged area or has special needs.
This seems like a sensible approach, as it would be wrong to set entry requirements that are meaningless or irrelevant in specific contexts. For example, it would be nonsensical to require a minimum level of literacy when conducting interviews with candidates from developing countries who may not have received formal education.
This contextualisation approach could be adapted to other areas of life. For example, it might be appropriate to adjust entry requirements for students who have difficulty studying in traditional classrooms due to their location or social background.
The Debate on Entry Requirements
There is a fierce debate currently raging on whether or not entry requirements should be contextualised to the country or region a student wishes to study in. Some countries, such as the UK, have specific entry requirements that must be met in order for students to be considered for admission. Other countries, such as Switzerland, allow for a more relaxed approach where students are judged on their merits and not their nationality or place of birth.
The benefits of contextualising entry requirements vary from country to country. In the UK, it is believed that this approach helps to filter out would-be terrorists and other extremists. Furthermore, by having specific entry requirements in place, universities are able to better assess students’ academic ability and prepare them for the rigours of university life.
On the other hand, some argue that having specific entry requirements does little more than force students into a particular mould and limits their opportunities. For example, in Switzerland, if a student does not meet the required academic standards they may still be admitted provided they can prove they have special circumstances which warrant an exception. This allows for a wider range of students to enrol in Swiss universities and provides them with greater flexibility when it comes to studying.
Whichever side of the debate
Contextualising Entry Requirements
Entry requirements can be contextualised in a number of ways to suit the specific needs of an institution or sector. For example, entry requirements for apprenticeships may be different to those for university degrees, depending on the level of qualification required.
Alternatively, entry requirements could be based on a person’s age, occupation or facility use. This could allow people with disabilities to access certain activities or sectors more easily, for example.
Finally, entry requirements could be based on whether a person is a resident of a particular area or country. This would allow international students to gain access to education and training programmes in the UK more easily, for example.
Entry Requirements in Context
There is no single answer to the question of what entry requirements should be in order for someone to be allowed to enrol in a course or enter a particular institution.
A contextual approach to entry requirements would take into account an individual’s background and experience, as well as their reasons for wanting to study or work in a particular area.
For example, if you are applying to study Business Administration at university, your background and experience (e.g. whether you have previous knowledge of accounting and business principles) would be taken into account when assessing your eligibility for the course.
However, there is no one-size-fits-all answer to this question, as different institutions may have different entry requirements for different courses.
It is undeniable that employers are increasingly looking for employees who have diverse backgrounds and skillsets. However, not all applicants will meet the same entry requirements, which can often lead to frustration on the part of potential employees. In order to ensure a smooth process for everyone involved, it is important to contextualise entry requirements in a way that takes into account the individual and their unique experience.