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Student employability and mooting

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  1. Student employability and mooting Any connection? Judith Dahlgreen

  2. “ Employability” • Skills, attributes and understandings that make graduates more likely to gain employment and to be successful in their chosen occupation • In addition to subject specific knowledge. Judith Dahlgreen

  3. New importance • Student fees and loans… students and their parents are interested in the economic value of their investment ( £40,000). • Global competitiveness.. can UK graduates contribute to economic growth in the UK? Are they attractive as employees? • Is government investment in higher education “worthwhile”. Judith Dahlgreen

  4. Which skills, attributes and understandings… ? • How does the law programme as a whole develop these during its 2-4 years’ duration? • As Law Schools we are being encouraged to move beyond a module by module view of responsibility…. Partnership working. Judith Dahlgreen

  5. Employers • Communication skills • Team working • Integrity • Intellectual ability • Confidence • Character/personality • Planning/organisational skills Judith Dahlgreen

  6. Employers • Literacy • Numeracy • Analysis and decision making. Judith Dahlgreen

  7. Simple approach …… • On the face of it mooting develops • Communication • Team working • Intellectual ability • Planning/ organisational skills • Analysis and decision making • Confidence Judith Dahlgreen

  8. Mooting at university • Is the activity and its assessment designed in a detailed manner to foster these outcomes… do we have constructive alignment? • E.g does it really foster confidence if there’s only one moot? • Does it promote team working if the students are assessed individually? • Are these benefits apparent to the students? Judith Dahlgreen

  9. Mooting compared with other broader activities…. ? • Easier to organise.. not dependent on outside agents ( solicitors firms, pro bono partners etc) • Task depends on a constantly changing easily accessible dataset which we do not have to concoct….reported case law! • It’s contained and definable and relatively stable … no surprises. Judith Dahlgreen

  10. Mooting compared with other activities…. ? • Risk of failure as a learning experience is very low. • The intellectual rigour is ( almost) guaranteed. • Suitable for all students regardless of disability, background, nationality, personal financial circumstances….. Not really contextual. Judith Dahlgreen

  11. More sophisticated approach to employability…. • Individual employability strongly linked to students’ ability to recognise their own needs in terms of skills, understandings and attributes and to develop these in partnership with the school/institution. • Often linked with careers planning. Judith Dahlgreen

  12. Personal development planning • A better approach to employability will embrace this at the school level. • Articulation of skills or experience gaps and of action to address them will enhance student learning and will impress potential employers. • But it needs support from the whole academic community . Judith Dahlgreen

  13. Is this just another list? • List of key skills to be ticked. • Recent research suggests may not make a real difference to employability and students often disinterested.. It’s dull and trite. Judith Dahlgreen

  14. Graduate identity and capability • Broad range of experiences and capabilities that evidence potential to take on a wide range of functions: • Values ( personal and social , organisational) • Intellectual rigour • Performance ( attention to detail, communication) • Engagement ( be outward looking .. ) Judith Dahlgreen

  15. Graduate identity and capability • Each student develops their own graduate identity and is able to articulate it. • The programme provides opportunities for functioning … circumstances that allow the development of graduate identity. Judith Dahlgreen

  16. Conclusion • Diverse activities within law schools that allow the opportunity to develop values, intellectual rigour, good performance and engagement with a community of practice will enhance employability . • Should be accompanied by reflection and discussion . Judith Dahlgreen

  17. Conclusion • Mooting is likely to enhance employability if the student reflects on it and builds it into the picture they paint of themselves to employers…. what I have done, who I am, what this evidences…. my values, my performance etc. Judith Dahlgreen

  18. Conclusion • Many other activities in a broad law school achieve a similar objective e.g legal advice clinic, pro bono work • Resource allocation is tricky… law school staff time does improve outcome …. Self esteem of students, academic skill, symbol of school recognition. Judith Dahlgreen

  19. References • G Hinchcliffe and A Jolly Graduate Identity and Employability British Educational Research Journal, (2011) 37:4, 563-584 • Warwick Institute for Employment Research: Futuretrack Stage 4 Full Report : Transitions into employment, Further Study and Other Outcomes. November 2012 • L Pool and P Sewell The Key to Employability: Developing a Practical Model of Graduate Employability Education and Training Vol. 49 No 4, 2007 pp277-289 Judith Dahlgreen

  20. References • W Archer and J Davison Graduate Employability: What do Employers Think and Want? The Council for Industry and Higher Education , 2008 • M Yorke and P Knight Embedding Employability Into the Curriculum The Higher Education Academy, April 2006. • A Pegg, J Waldock, S Hendy-Isaac, R Lawton Pedagogy for Employability The Higher Education Academy 2012 • S Cranmer Enhancing Graduate Employability: Best Intentions and Mixed Outcomes Studies in Higher Education, ( 2006) 31:2, 169-184 Judith Dahlgreen

  21. References • Building for Growth: Business Priorities for Education and Skills. CBI May 2011 Judith Dahlgreen