Professional Exchange Networks

In this section

Liam Alderton from East Coast College has participated and benefited from an ETF Professional Exchange Network. Watch our case study video to find out more about how this has impacted the college.

What are Professional Exchange Networks?

Professional Exchange Networks (PEN) are locally organised groups who engage regularly.  They identify practitioner focused issues, and support practitioners to reflect on their practice, and share, collaborate and develop solutions.

These Exchanges act as regional hubs for groups of practitioners to work together.  The Professional Exchange programme has been running since early 2016 and has seen over 2,500 practitioners involved.

What happens in a Professional Exchange?

Practitioners approach Professional Exchanges with their own idea of what it is they want to develop, learn or improve.  Activity through Professional Exchanges can include small scale action research, training, coaching and the sharing of practice.

How will I know I have developed as part of a Professional Exchange?

When you join a Professional Exchange you will have the opportunity to identify what it is you want to develop, learn or improve.  This is completed using a brief self-assessment that incorporates the Professional Standards.  As you work your way through the Exchange you will be supported to review your progress against your initial starting point.

What might a Professional Exchange experience look like?

A practitioner joins a Professional Exchange Network in their local area.  They have already identified that they have an issue with students engaging in the maths and English element of their study programme.  When they attend their first Exchange meeting they meet three others who are also facing the same issue.  They decide to undertake some action research and each trial three different methods of engaging their students.  They work together to evaluate their findings.  At the next Exchange meeting, each group reports back on their progress so far and share their learning and ideas with others.

Does it cost me to take part in an Exchange?

Professional Exchanges are free for practitioners to take part in.  There may be some training activity you might need to contribute towards but the actual Exchange meetings and the connected activity is free.

I would like my organisation to be part of an Exchange, how can we do this?

We are always keen to have providers support our Exchanges.  This may be as simple as providing a location for a meeting to take place or providing a financial contribution to support the sustainability of an Exchange.

What areas do the Professional Exchanges operate in and how do I find out more?

Find your nearest Professional Exchange using our map. For general enquiries please contact Catherine Manning.