Introduction to placements
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Introduction to Placements. Dr Vikki Carolan – Placement Tutor. Topics covered today:. employability what we mean by a placement. What is employability?

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Introduction to placements

Introduction to Placements

Dr Vikki Carolan – Placement Tutor

Topics covered today
Topics covered today:

  • employability

  • what we mean by a placement

Introduction to placements

What is employability?

‘a set of achievements - skills, understandings and personal attributes - that make graduates more likely to gain employment and be successful in their chosen occupations, which benefits themselves, the workforce, the community and the economy.’

Yorke 2006

Introduction to placements

Ways to improve employability:

  • get a (science) degree

  • get (relevant) work experience

  • develop transferable skills

    PSP1, PSP2 and PSP3 will all aid this process

    Spending year 3 on placement will improve your employability

What is a placement
What is a 'placement'?

  • fantastic, exciting, daunting opportunity

  • 48 weeks employment (often paid) in industry / research institute / hospital .......

  • Placement period - year 3 of a 4 year degree

  • Day to day work; projects; team working; communication; learning; self-development etc.

  • placements located throughout UK (and a few in Europe)

Placement gives experience of reality may let you try out a career
Placement gives experience of 'reality'; may let you try out a career

Placements can be:

  • lab-based e.g. microbiology, analysis, synthesis, genetics, biochemistry, toxicology, hospital labs etc

  • non-lab based e.g. clinical data management, bioinformatics, technical writing, clinical trials, field work, primary / secondary education

  • more info on types of placement later in module

Who can do a placement
Who can do a placement? a career

  • Any student on the Biosciences programme


    .....getting a placement is like getting a job

  • you have to make (lots of) applications

  • you have to prepare for and attend interviews

Aims of a placement
Aims of a placement a career

It provides the opportunity to:

  • participate in the job selection process

  • apply specialist skills & knowledge in a work environment

  • see relevance of your studies to the workplace

  • experience different techniques/equipment

  • develop key skills

  • consider career options

  • be an independent learner

  • improve employability

    To obtain a 'sandwich degree' you must satisfactorily complete a placement

How do i obtain a placement
How do I obtain a placement? a career

  • Start a 'placement file'

  • Produce a good CV

    • advice / guidelines in PSP modules

    • seek and utilise feedback

    • finalise over summer (1st year results; potential employers may ask SHU for results transcript)

  • Practice...

    • covering letters

    • application form questions

    • amend based on feedback

How to get a placement contd
How to get a placement, contd..... a career

Get a good academic reference:

  • attendance

  • attitude

  • marks

  • Attend placement workshops (year one and year two)

  • Follow guidance

  • Use facilities and expertise available to you (Careers Service)

  • If you have contacts - use them

    We help you to obtain a placement - you get it!

  • How does a placement help with my degree
    How does a placement help with my degree: a career

    • you get a sandwich award (shows employability)

    • you get another reference source

    • you make professional contacts

    • you may get a job offer

    • you may enhance your final degree classification

    • It contributes to the PSP3 module

    Professional scientific practice 3
    Professional a career& Scientific Practice 3

    • 20C level 6 module based around employability

    • you have to show evidence of transferrable skills and employability

    • Components:

      • literature review (40%)

      • employability portfolio (60%)

    Employability portfolio
    Employability portfolio: a career

    • skills reviews, pre- and post-work experience

    • evidence of oral and other communication skills

    • written work based on professional experience

    • reflection on employability

    • graduate level CV

    • Work experience can be from: 12 month placement; summer projects; part-time work; Venture matrix; simulated work experience

    To do or not to do a placement
    To a careerdo or not to do a placement......

    • To get a sandwich degree need to do a placement!

    • Aims:

      • improve your employability

      • experience of job selection process

      • development of academic and transferrable skills

      • consider future career options

      • become an 'independent learner'; identification of strengths & weaknesses

        Research has shown students that have completed placements tend to get a better final degree than FT equivalents

        BUT - obtaining a placement is hard work and requires dedication and planning