Sarah Dalrymple

I am Sarah Dalrymple and I run a Scottish Qualifications Authority (SQA) approved training centre, delivering Foundation and Modern Apprenticeships throughout Scotland. I am a Chartered Educational Assessor, External and Internal Verifier and Assessor for Modern Apprenticeships (MAs), I am also a Qualification Development Specialist for SQA. My career started as a chef and while I was the head chef of a 5 star hotel in South Africa, I was offered the opportunity to become an assessor. This was possibly the best thing that happened to me and my career. I started my training career working with disadvantaged African women, helping them develop their skills to open up their own bakeries. In 2001, we moved to Scotland and I started my career as an MA assessor. I have spent 20 years working with MAs across a number of sectors. My passion lies in the unique and personal approach to learning and development and the very real value of work- based learning. For a number of years, I have felt that school and institutionalised learning does not quite meet the vast learning styles and abilities of learners and I have been considering doing my PhD in Work- Based Learning for a while, as I believe very strongly that Vocational Work – Based Learning and the very practical approach to learning on the job, is highly beneficial to both the learner and employer. I started the PhD programme at the end of October 2020, so am currently doing my literature review and developing my research topic title. My broad title for now is, `Bridging the gap between Vocational Work Based Learning and Industry: A Study of Modern Apprenticeships in Scotland and the relationship between learner, employer and training provider.’ The topic covers all the areas that I would like to explore relating to the delivery of MAs, but I would also like to look at the differences in delivery of MAs to English Apprenticeships, to fully understand the benefits and drawbacks of the different approaches to work-based learning. I am supposed to be doing the PhD as a part time student, but am finding myself getting more and more drawn into the exciting world of research, particularly seeing the research topic is so relevant to my day to day work activities.