For BTI, delivering a qualification is about preparing the student for life as a graduate in their chosen profession so that they will be successful at gaining employment and transforming lives. To this end, we work with industry stakeholders to ensure that our programmes are fit for purpose; that our graduates are sought after.
Our 2014 graduation survey shows that 86.77% of BTI students are employed in a job that is linked to their qualification at the time of graduation.
Bachelor of Counselling graduates reported that 83% of them were employed, an increase of 7% on 2013 outcomes.
90.2% of Teacher Education graduates were employed in schools, with 83% of students graduating with a degree in primary teaching having secured a job. This is an increase of 18% on 2013.
88% of students who graduated with BTI’s Graduate Diploma of Teaching (Secondary) degree in 2014 were employed by the time that they graduated, and it is further encouraging to note that our research shows that of those graduating in 2014, 44% were offered a job in either their ‘Host school’ or a school at which they carried out a practicum experience. This shows that BTI is teaching the skills required in the programme to meet the needs of industry.
Our graduate job outcomes for 2014 are particularly encouraging as the current national trend for those graduating with a degree in Primary and Secondary teaching is significantly lower. Our evidence, based on student and stakeholder feedback, shows us that BTI’s commitment to growing students both holistically and academically, stretching them towards excellence, is outworked by students whilst on practicum and witnessed by employers.
The skills that graduates learn at BTI are not just focussed on the specific practice skills required, ie “teaching”, “counselling”, “social work”, they also learn transferrable skills such as working in teams, problem solving, communication and accountably. We believe that this is imperative if we are to ensure that our graduates are educated for roles that may not yet be available to them in NZ. This approach helps to ‘future-proof’ our graduates and makes them highly attractive to stakeholders, many of whom recognise these skills at the time of practicum or ‘Host school’ experience.
2014 is a year that BTI will remember for quite some time to come; not only is it our coming of age, it is also the year in which NQZA gave approval for BTI to deliver two new qualifications:
* Postgraduate Diploma of Professional Practice
* Master of Professional Practice
The added significance of this approval is that, not only is this BTI's first step into postgraduate programme delivery, but that the whole approval process from submission to approval took just over 12 weeks!
In responding to the submission, the NZQA approval panel commended BTI on the following:
* The integration of research throughout the whole programme, incorporating a broad range of research methodologies.
* The level of staff qualification and research experience.
* The example provided by senior staff in combining programme development, teaching and research involvement with the leadership roles.
* The comprehensive consultation process, which was iterative, broad and meaningful, and which clearly influenced development.
* The well designed integrated approach to research supported by committee structure, strategic plan and professional development.
* The inclusion of an exegesis option for the thesis.
* The successful integration of the faith-based special character of BTI with the academic rigour required at
post-graduate level without compromising either.
BTI Dean, Dr Andrew Smith, says the qualification is specifically faith-based and is for any professional working in people-helping roles such as teaching, counselling, social work or occupational therapy and who wants to look at integrating faith and work, “This doesn’t mean postgraduate students will be working in a
Christian school or church. It just means they want to think about what it means to bring their faith to work.”
The qualification consists of 18 months’ equivalent full time study, but will be completed on a part time basis across three years allowing students to integrate study with their professional practice.
“We are going to be provoking students to look at themselves and think about who they are as professionals. They will then look at some of the principles that they bring to the workplace. Often people get involved in these sorts of roles without necessarily clearly articulating the principles that we work from.”
BTI has also woven research aspects throughout the whole qualification which is an innovative approach to postgraduate study.
The programme, which is expected to fill quickly due to a waiting list of eager would-be students, will be delivered for the first time in early 2015.
On Saturday 5th April 2014, as the glorious hot sunshine beat down on Tauranga, shoppers paused to acknowledge 125 graduands decked out in the gold and blue colours that represent BTI's Teacher Education and Counsellor Education programmes. The celebratory processsion, which commenced at the waterfront at 1.15pm, was led by a piped band and cheered on by friends, family and whanau lining Devonport Road.
Deputy Major, Kelvin Clout, joined an impressive crowd of almost 800 to celebrate BTI's 2014 Graduation ceremony at Holy Trinity Church. As always, there was a strong sense of community spirit evident, and a number of the graduands were publicly honoured with tributes from whanau and family.
This graduation was especially important for BTI, as it marked the largest number of Secondary Teaching students to graduate in one group in BTI's 21 year history. 25 students, who had studied the Graduate Diploma of Teaching (Secondary) programme by distance, from all around New Zealand, came together in celebration with 76% of this cohort already having secured jobs; 40% of which are in their 'Host School'. The national average for Secondary graduates gaining employment after graduation is closer to 30%!
Al Ronberg, pictured centre in this main photo, says of the Secondary programme, "When you study at BTI, you become a part of a family - you get the feeling that YOUR OWN personal success is something that EVERYONE on staff is working towards. They give you a long leash and continually personalise the course to your individual subject requirements and personality. The jewel in the crown is their ingenious Host-School model in Secondary Teacher training."
These photos show some of the 'behind the scenes' moments that were captured on the day.
BTI is developing a Master of Professional Practice (M Prof Prac) - an 18-month, full time equivalent, qualification designed for Christian professionals working in fields such as education sectors (ECE, Primary, Secondary, Tertiary) and social service, including Counselling.
We are delighted to confirm that the proposal has now been finalised and submitted to NZQA for approval. This can be a reasonably long process, but we hope to have approval by Term 4 of this year so that we can welcome the first cohort in 2015!
To find our more about our proposed Masters qualification, or to register your interest, CLICK HERE.
BTI is delighted to announce that we will be hosting author, Paul Young, and theologian, Baxter Kruger, in January 2014.
Experience this rare opportunity - come and linger in the love of God. Evening event and day retreat available, with prices starting at just $5!
Read more and to book online: http://www.bti.ac.nz/the-shack.html
"This simple story confirmed and validated the way in which I think and
relate to God, Jesus and the Holy Spirit. This book was life altering and truly wonderful. My understanding is that the author originally wrote it for his children. Love God, Love The Shack!"
BTI celebrated 20 years this weekend with a celebratory dinner at Mills Reef, attended by students, alumni, staff, VIPs and other key stakeholders, including Hon Simon Bridges, MP for Tauranga, and the Mayor of Tauranga, Stuart Crosby.
The evening was full of laughter, recognition of service, student awards and an inspirational speech by well known journalist, Rob Harley. Read more...
Everyone knows there is something special about BTI, but trying to put your finger on exactly what it is can prove tricky. Kathryn Overall takes up the challenge of exploring the relational learning culture that makes the BTI study experience so unique.
In recently published Government league tables, highlighting student performance across the tertiary sector, local Tauranga provider Bethlehem Tertiary Institute has proven that it can punch above its weight by out-performing all 18 institutes of technology /polytechnics and holding its own against the university sector.
Locally, BTI topped both the Bay of Plenty Polytechnic and the University of Waikato in two of the four categories measured; course completions (89%) and qualification completions (87%), and matched the course completion outcome of the best performing university, Otago.
BTI’s dean, Dr Andrew Smith, attributes the successful results to dedicated staff and the institute’s
commitment to quality education, “These results affirm our quality teaching, which is informed by recognised research and supported by a staff dedicated to student success. Over the past few years, BTI has seen an increasing number of students studying some or all of their papers at a distance, as they balance work and home commitments with study, and so we are particularly encouraged by our student retention results when compared to other providers of distance learning.”
The Tertiary Education Commission releases these figures each year to help students make informed
decisions when choosing a tertiary provider. Tertiary Education Minister, Steven Joyce, said the data showed that New Zealand tertiary institutes were performing well, with qualification completion rates improving across all sectors.
BTI offers qualifications in early childhood education, primary and secondary teaching, and counselling and
social work. A Master of Professional Practice qualification is currently under development for delivery
in 2014, subject to NZQA approval.
To read more about these results, visit the TEC website.
** Hot Off The Press **
We are delighted to bring you this year's Forward Magazine. Filled with a potpouri of articles, this third edition includes:
Hayden Reid: Bringing His Game To The Classroom
Charter Schools: Why Are They So Controversial?
How Do You Thrive As A New Secondary Teacher?
The DNA of BTI's Relational Learning Culture
Strengths Based Leadership
A Week In The Life Of A Third Year Counselling Student
2014 Programmes and Key Dates
Ever wondered why BTI graduates make such an impact? Check this out....
When Vicki Hegarty graduated with a Bachelor of Counselling from BTI in 2007, she started working as the resident counsellor at St Peters House in Tauranga. Five years on she is still there and is a valued member of the team, working alongside fellow BTI graduate, Jill Skelton. St Peters House Director, Andrew Tomlinson, says, “Vicky and Jill, as BTI graduates, both work really well here as part of the team. They are both professionally capable and competent in what they do, and they are both also extremely well motivated by their compassion for people which is great to work alongside.”
St Peters House is a Christian, charitable organisation, which offers a variety of free services to the people of Tauranga, including parenting courses, food parcels, personal development groups, debt management and personal counselling services – and the list is by no means exhaustive.
The counselling service offered by St Peters House is free to the Tauranga community and referrals come to Vicky from many different avenues. Despite the variety of backgrounds that her clients come from, Vicky says mostly have similar reasons for seeking counselling. “Common issues and challenges clients face, are grief and loss and depression - but often historical or current trauma or abuse can be linked to depression –so usually when someone presents for depression there are wider issues that will come forward and usually people want to deal with those issues.”
Vicky finds her work rewarding, and loves to see the positive changes that occur with her clients. She says, “What motivates me is when as a result of the counselling process, people are strengthened – and you can see that they are freer and strengthened to go for the goals that they have come with in counselling and that’s really rewarding to see that happen.”
Vicky is very mindful that trust needs to be built in her client relationship in order for her clients to feel safe enough to share their personal challenges. “I really try to have a non-judgmental approach,” Vicky shares. “I mean you learn that in the BTI stuff, you really do, but I think you really have to find that genuinely in yourself…and have worked through some of your own stuff, to be able to connect to that and realise ‘gosh, life can be hard sometimes.’ I think people sense that and as you build a relationship of trust, people feel safe.”
Vicky has positive memories of her time at BTI, and has felt well set-up for the real world of working as a counsellor. “The values sat with me, and I had the same Christian worldview so it just all sort of fitted together for me. I really appreciated being in that wholesome environment and having a place to be able to learn in that environment. I felt well prepared through BTI for counselling, because of the professional counselling models we learnt really well, and they translated well in the workplace – that was really important.”
Even if we lean towards a ‘glass half-full’ view of things, it is hard not to notice the pain and the brokenness that exists in the world around us. Chances are, if you are an empathetic person with a capacity to care for others that you have found yourself in one-on-one helping situations. Compassionate people will often find that others will confide in them and, although many consider it a privilege to be invited into a person’s world in this way, it can also be a very frustrating moment when people find that their desire to help others is much higher than their level of skill and ability to do so effectively.
Not surprisingly, people who resonate with this reality have often considered training to become a counsellor at some stage of their lives. Counselling is one of those rare ‘transformative’ professions; or perhaps vocation would be a better word to depict the sense of deep dedication and life-long calling that many counsellors describe.
Because so much of the work and rewards of counselling occur behind the protective doors of confidentiality, it can be easy to underestimate the powerful dynamics that are at work. Tectonic-shifting life change can happen in the unseen world of a counselling room; great geographies of the heart can be traversed and understood in new ways and new frontiers of freedom can be discovered, fought and won.
Former Baptist minister, Richard Cook (BTI Dean of Counsellor Education and Academic Services) is convinced of the value that counselling can hold for individuals. “Counselling is not just a chance to talk; it’s a chance to talk to somebody who understands something about the process of growing and changing. A good friend or family member can engage compassionately and sensitively, but counselling is about engaging with someone who is a good listener and who is also skilled in a change process.”
Many men and women come and train as counsellors in the autumn of their life once their families have left home and they are in a position to invest time and energy into long-held dreams and new pursuits. However, there is also an emerging generation of counsellors in their mid twenties and thirties who have a remarkable passion to see people find wholeness and transformation.
Michelle Tuke is nearing the completion of her Bachelor of Counselling degree at BTI and is happy to talk about her passion for the field she has chosen. “What motivates me is possibility and I guess that goes hand in hand with hope; possibilities that things can be different; that we can think about things differently or that we can move through a process to a new place. I have got a heart that can keep me in a room with someone exploring things and looking for the smallest glimmer of hope for hours if they want me to and I like that I can hold that hope for people, even if they don’t hold it for themselves.”
Please see www.bti.ac.nz for more details