Embedding Employability and Enterprise into the Curriculum Robert Marsden – Course Leader Drama and Theatre Arts firstname.lastname@example.org / 07525 480164
Graduate Attributes (embedded into every module delivered by the University) • Discipline Expertise • Professionalism and Professional Integrity • Global Citizenship and Sustainability • Communication and Teamwork • Reflective and Critical Learner • Life Long Learning
VC Michael Gunn, 2012 These next few years will be a period of unprecedented change and challenge for the higher education sector and this University… …We, the University, will make a difference for and by our students and graduates. They will be known and respected by employers for the key graduate attributes that appear in the Staffordshire Graduate, specifically the particular emphasis on the 3Es ofemployability, enterprise and entrepreneurialism.
WHY DID I THINK WE SHOULD GET INVOLVED IN THE PILOT? • Many of our graduates have always had can do attitude- setting up as freelance artists and practitioners or creating their own companies. • Our course is real-world based on mainstream theatre practice. • Students are learning for as well as learning about their subject. We encourage them to think like theatre practitioners • Wanted to help students demonstrate their employability and explicitly articulate their skills.
Drama and Theatre Arts • Level 4- The Theatre Industry (Enhancing Careers and Personal Success) – 30 credits • Included Study Skills – academic writing, presentation skills – working with Study Skills (SSD) department • Reflective Practitioner sessions- working with SSD • Teamwork and Ensemble Building • The attributes – where now, where next? - inhouse • Leadership skills- in-house • CVs, Personal Profiles- Careers Service. • Above team taught • Assessment • E-Portfolio (Pebblepad) CV, Personal Statement, Essays, Analysis of events • Reflective Evaluation on Graduate Attributes, Leadership. • Presentation and a reflection on that Presentation
Level 5- Theatre Arts Projects (Enterprise, Entrepreneurialism and Citizenship) – 15 credits Continued exploring how theatre and drama can be applied to different contexts – arts projects/centres/freelance opportunities/own companies. Included- • Diagnostic and reflection on the attributes- where they were a year ago/where now… • Weekly lectures and workshops on creative and theatre arts projects included • Talks on Post Graduate on Dramatherapy, Teacher Training, Drama School training , employers at Industry Breakfast….
25 hours of work related experience • Worked with New Vic Theatre, Regent Theatre, B Arts, Jude, Reveal Theatre or creating own project. • Students had to a) as individuals reflect on and understand their own theatre practice so far and what their current interests were b) identify a company to create a project with and why c) be interviewed by the company and get feedback d) work with the module tutor to examine philosophy and mission of the company and how their core values and career paths may map onto these. e) with the organisation create and deliver a small project eg a workshop f) present and reflect on the experience by create an enquiry around their work.- answer can only be found by doing that work related experience.
Underpinning this… • CIHE (Council for Industry and Higher Education’s) 2008 Report ‘Graduate Employability’ where top 3 skills are Communication, Team Working and Integrity • Also wished to “Build student learning links with business” as per the CIHE .
Benchmark Statement for Drama, Dance and Performance (2007) 'Graduateness' in this domain cannot be defined in the singular but will involve a range of both subject-specific and generic skills. The transferable skills of graduates in this domain are those much sought after in other environments such as business and commerce. These skills include those of communication (written, oral and performance), of research and analysis, the ability to work independently, interpersonallyand in groups, to deadlines and under pressure, with flexibility, imagination, self-motivation and organisation.
Challenges • Change had never before attempted on this scale at curriculum level. At launch 700 students and 70 staff. Now 1500 students (2nd year) and 100 staff. It has worked because at Subject Level we have been allowed to make it work for us. Now no longer a pilot. • Making the attributes discipline specific was not always easy at first – We used QAA publication on Enterprise Education quote from / Department of Business, Innovation and Skills “meaningful and relevant experiences that lead to life long learning.” • Developing students as reflective practitioners – reflective practice is difficult. • How we defined enterprise / entrepreneurship – staff conflicts- looked to QAA definitions.
Impacts at University and Award Level • Altering the culture at Staffordshire that employability and enterprise sits only within the Business School. • Increased levels of volunteering- 2013: 740 students engaged (70% increase). • Module Monitoring at local level suggests satisfaction with the modules. • Cross Faculty collaboration and discussion – Drama working with Business School/Careers/Study Skills- to strengthen our understanding. • More sophisticated, joined up thinking without losing the core curriculum and using all the skills we had in existence at the University.