Course Leaders’ Conference 2013. Discerning Futures. WORK BASED LEARNING AS AN INTEGRATED CURRICULUM . Sallyann Halliday and Jayne Mothersdale. Workshop aims. At the end of the workshop today, we hope participants will:.
At the end of the workshop today, we hope participants will:
Gain an increased awareness of what ‘good’ work based integrated curriculum ‘looks like’
Be able to develop approaches and strategies to embed work-based learning in the curriculum of programmes through appropriate course development and design
What is work based learning?
What is curriculum?
What is work based learning as an integrated curriculum (WBLIC)?
Wide range of terms often used
One definition….WBL is a learning process which focuses university level thinking upon work (paid or unpaid) in order to facilitate the recognition, acquisition and application of individual and collective knowledge, skills and abilities to achieve specific outcomes of significance to the learner, their work and the university (adapted from Garnett, 2005)
A curriculum is a normative document (or a collection of documents) setting the framework for planning learning experiences. Depending on the country, the type of education and training and the institution, curricula may define; learning outcomes, objectives, contents, place and duration of learning, teaching and assessment methods to a greater or lesser extent
(Source: Cedefop Research Paper No. 6. 2010)
Fit For Award…guardian of theoretical knowledge
Fit For Purpose… meets the needs and is aligned
Fit For Places…tied to their needs/workforce development (WFD)
Changing nature of the labour market – ‘globalised’ market -rise of the service industries – knowledge-based economies
Increasing demand for ‘higher level’ skills (increased % of jobs requiring Level 4 and above)
Universities – move into ‘non-traditional’ markets, increasing role in workforce development (Little and Lore, 2010)
‘Integrated’ curriculum – one of the key factors in improving the match between graduate skills and employers’ needs
Four in five employers (81%) value employability skills above other factors such as degree subject (70%) and class (46%) (CBI, 2012)
2 year international research project – funded through EU Lifelong Learning programme – aims to identify good practice in work/practice relevant learning in higher education settings
UK team at Leeds Metropolitan University (Sallyann Halliday, David Devins, Jayne Mothersdale and Ben Mitchell, FBL), working with partners in Austria, Spain, Finland, Germany, Czech Republic and Poland
How do we get HE developers and enterprise in the same room talking about integrated curricula?
What lessons can be learned by academics, practitioners?
Can they be formulated into a set of guiding principles that can be used by curricula developers and or human resource specialists within enterprise?
MA Preventive Conservation, Northumbria University, England
Work Based and Integrative Studies (WBIS) (UG and PG programme), University of Chester, England
Bachelor in Industrial Engineering, Universidad del Pais Vasco, Spain
Time of development – no existing MA programme in the UK
England has a well-established multidisciplinary Conservation community – small and dispersed across the country
Demand from those working in the industry for a programme to formalise knowledge and skills (without giving up paid work or having to re-locate)
Programme Leaders industry involvement and networks – key role in responding to an identified market need
University of Northumbria
Developed to enable students to gain knowledge and understanding of the range of materials used in the creation of objects of moveable cultural heritage as well as strategies for storage, display and transportation
Conservation – viewed as a ‘practice’ rather than intellectual endeavour – focus on ‘application of knowledge’ -at the heart of the development of the programme was the need for it to be embedded into practice
Strategy for Success
FT programme developed into an online/distance learning programme
Majority of students - PT and already working in the heritage sector
Obstacles had to be overcome – tensions with ‘traditional’ approach to delivery of curriculum – how would it work online?
Commitment and enthusiasm of Programme Leader was key
Delivered over three Semesters
Semester 1:‘Theories underpinning preventive conservation’
Semester 2: purely work-based work experience in a cultural heritage organisation – WBL experience of problem solving in working practice within a cultural institution
Semester 3: Dissertation – work-based topic
Learning and teaching strategy - electronic journal, discussion boards (Blackboard)
‘Reflective practice’ …developing WBLIC approaches:
‘If they for instance cleaned a piece of silver I can ask them what they had used…how they used it …how it worked…what alternatives had been considered ..really getting them to think reflectively and critically about their practice’
(Programme Leader, MA Preventive Conservation)
University of Chester
One of oldest WBL Frameworks in HE – first validated in 1998
‘Shell framework’ of negotiated WBL
Used to engage with employers to deliver flexible, tailored programmes of learning (at UG and PG level)
‘WBIS’ managed by Centre for Work Related Studies (CWRS) – interdisciplinary team of staff experienced and skilled in WBL
Design and delivery of WBL that ranges from individualised negotiated programmes of learning to corporate programmes of learning developed and designed with employers
Work with a range of employers - DWP, NHS, RAF, local authorities, SMEs in the local area
Accreditation framework BUTspecific pre-validated modules - written for the programme to support students to plan and contextualise ‘negotiated’ WBL – key modules -‘Self Review and Negotiation of Learning’ and ‘Skills and Approaches for Work Based Learning’
Range of ‘shell’ modules can be selected for a programme of study e.g. stress management, leadership, mentoring at work
‘Bespoke’ modules (at UG and PG levels) can be developed in line with employer interests
Delivery: Workshop sessions, online theory documents and VLE
WBIS Success Example: UK Forum of Disability Centres – umbrella body for Disability Assessment Centres across the UK – 18 regional centres across the UK
No regulatory or accrediting body to oversee or approve education and qualifications of Driving Advisers in the UK
Demand for ‘formal’ training of employees
WBIS used to develop a highly relevant and specialised programme – the ‘Forum of Disability Centres (UK) Education Programme’
Professional Certificate and a Post Graduate Certificate in Driving Assessment and Outdoor Mobility
3 ‘core’ modules – Professional Roles and Responsibilities, Understanding Medical Conditions and their Impact on Driving Skills and Assessment and Evaluation of Fitness to Drive
The Forum worked with CWRS on initial module descriptors – worked closely to develop the programme – the Forum had a clear idea what elements should be included in each of the modules and how they would sub-divide
IMH is a professional training centre and offers training in the engineering field
Through discussions with employers and educational experts the need was identified for engineering training to be tailored to specific company needs
IMH developed a Bachelor’s degree in Industrial Engineering
The programme was co-created by the course team and companies – the aim being to alternate periods of classroom work and practical training
Curriculum – two main ‘blocks’ – the first one contains conventional classroom modules. The second block involves students in undertaking specialisation that takes place in a company in which the student will train for three and a half years
Through these students acquire the engineering skills, knowledge and competencies required by law for practitioners
During this time the student is provided with a part-time learning contract as a learner
Once per month students spend 3 days at IMH and two days within the company
The final year of the programme includes a 12-week work placement in a company outside Spain
The first block of theoretical modules is a legal requirement– the second block is negotiated individually through a learning contract which is signed by the student, the company and IMH
During their placement students are required to develop real projects - while in the workplace each student is assigned a company tutor who monitors the student throughout the placement and organises formal monthly meetings
Company tutors receive special training
Progress in the work placement is monitored on a monthly basis by the student and the company tutor and is documented within the student’s notebook
Role of tutors is key to programme monitoring and coordination – there is regular communication between IMH and company tutors
Planning and designing the curriculum - responding to industry demand/professional demand
Institutional culture – support ‘from the top’ for ‘flexible’ work practice focused approaches – clear senior management championing of WBL – vision of an integrative approach
Good support structure - guiding principles and processes (infrastructure) to support WBL – ‘WBL Frameworks’ – challenging traditional on-campus delivery
HEI’s to respond to employer needs for flexibility in a timely manner
HEI’s to listen to employer requirements and develop a curriculum which reflects these
UK based example - MA Preventive Conservation at Northumbria – Programme Leader – heavily ‘networked’ within the industry
The right type of staff delivering it - staff at the Centre for Work Related Studies (CWRS) at Chester, UK are interdisciplinary - wide range of skills and knowledge in WBL methodology enabling them to adapt their WBIS programme to meet the needs of individuals/employers as appropriate
Critical factor in successful integrated curriculum – knowledge, skills and experience of HEI staff involved
Considerable time and effort required on behalf of both employers and HEI staff to learn and adapt to the language of academia and business- frequent dialogue required to develop and sustain HEI-employer relationships
WBL is seen as a vehicle for the explicit development of key transferable skills – personal and work place (rather than discipline knowledge per se)
How, and in what ways, do you think that you could develop/further develop WBLIC within the module/course that you lead or are involved with?
Do you have any current examples of successful WBLIC within your module/course/School/Faculty?
What type of pedagogies/learning approaches do you feel will work particularly well with regard to WBLIC? Does it depend on the type of ‘work’ the learning is related to?
What do you see as the key underpinning success factors in developing work based learning as an integrated curriculum? What are the key enablers/inhibitors?
The task: Given the discussion of the above, under the heading ‘Further development of WBLIC at Leeds Metropolitan University’ use the stick-it notes and the blank sheet of paper to write down some thoughts/ideas of what needs to happen to enable more of this type of curriculum development and delivery within your module/course/School/Faculty
So, in summary…what do we need to do?
Potential area for development - establish a WBLIC University Network/Task group?
A network of people who meet regularly with the common goal of creating WBLIC approaches to programmes across the university – remit being to develop WBL initiatives/projects
Network to include Course Leaders, module tutors, research and business development staff, administration staff and any other colleagues across the University with an interest in WBL