The Ambassadors programme in schools is a cross-project OWRI collaborative initiative, co-ordinated by the PALF, and co-designed and funded by the four OWRI projects and the Priority Area Leadership Fellow (PALF).
The programme was rolled out by three of the four OWRI projects and the PALF; it was based in the Universities of Oxford (Creative Multilingualism), Manchester (Cross-Language Dynamics), Cambridge (MEITS) and Queen’s Belfast (PALF).
The Ambassadors programme was designed to promote Languages uptake at A level, in a range of schools in 4 regions of the UK, involving a team of undergraduate Ambassadors working with GCSE classes. The programme involved two classroom interventions by the Ambassadors; one university visit in each of the regions by GCSE pupils, with sample classes; and an intensive mentoring programme with language undergraduates working with GCSE language learners who are NOT committed to taking a language at A level. The rate of uptake at A level improved substantially across the board, with the mentoring showing particularly impressive results: 29% of all those mentored (who were by definition not committed to taking a language) actually took a language at A level. The programme was evaluated by an independent expert in the field.