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Personal Development Planning and Employability: Chicken and Egg

Personal Development Planning and Employability: Chicken and Egg

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Personal Development Planning and Employability: Chicken and Egg

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  1. Personal Development Planning and Employability: Chicken and Egg Dr John Peters NTF, FHEA Associate Director [Research], Centre for Recording Achievement Academic Development and Practice Unit University of Worcester

  2. Outcomes • Define PDP and employability • Critically discuss the relationship between PDP and employability • Relate UW PDP practice to national policy and drivers • Evaluate current research evidence for PDP’s value in supporting employability

  3. Centre for Recording Achievement • Seeks to ‘promote the awareness of recording achievement and action planning processes as an important element in improving learning and progression throughout the world of education, training and employment’. • CRA is an Associate Centre of the Higher Education Academy and offers a range of services to HEIs and their communities aimed at supporting the implementation of Progress Files, Personal Development Planning and e-portfolios.

  4. CRA Support • Access to the expertise of a practitioner network across sectors • Extensive website & resources • Relevant recent policy documents • Case studies of PDP practice • Members area with e-journal • Regular and ‘one-off’ events • Input into policy development • With HE Academy: JISC-mail list PDP-UK •

  5. Two views of the relationship: which comes first employability or PDP? Employability PDP PDP Employability

  6. 3 definitions of employability • The ability of graduates to find a ‘graduate job’ quickly • Work experience and work-related curriculum provision • A set of relevant individual characteristics [achievements and potential]

  7. Employability definition: HESA • HESA use the DLHE survey to produce the performance indicator for Universities in terms of employability. • ‘The indicator is the percentage of the base population who are working or studying. The indicator is defined as those graduates working or studying (or both) as a proportion of the numbers working or studying or seeking work. All other categories are excluded from this indicator.’ (HESA 2009)

  8. Employability definition: CBI • ‘The CBI has identified a number of “employability skills” or competencies: skills, attributes and knowledge that help graduates to secure employment, to enjoy their life at work, and to contribute to their employer’s success.’ • Positive attitude - a 'can-do' approach • Self-management – eg readiness to accept responsibility • Team working • Business and customer awareness • Problem solving • Communication and literacy • Application of numeracy • Application of information technology (UUK, 2008)

  9. Employability definition: Yorke • ‘A set of achievements – skills, understandings and personal attributes – that makes graduates more likely to gain employment and be successful in their chosen occupation, which benefits themselves, the workforce, the community and the economy’ (Yorke 2004)

  10. A set of achievements… • Skills – core skills, key skills, transferable skills & generic skills. Transferability skills • Understandings – meta cognition, ability to learn and adapt, context sensitivity, nous, • Personal attributes – self-awareness, self-regulation, self-efficacy • What about knowledge and experience?

  11. Cross Sectoral Agreement: Defining PDP • ‘a structured and supportedprocess undertaken by an individual to reflect upon their own learning, performance and / or achievement and to plan for their personal, educational and career development.’ (QAA et al, 2001)

  12. Cross Sectoral Agreement: PDP Quality Standards • The nature and scope of opportunities for PDP, and the recording and supporting strategies will be determined by each institution. • Students should participate in PDP in a range of learning contexts at each stage or level of their programme. • Institutions must assure themselves that PDP is being implemented effectively. (QAA et al, 2001).

  13. University of Worcester • PDP Quality Standards - student entitlements • Independent student PDP – SQP & PebblePad • Personal tutorial system – primary focus • Curriculum – across all taught and research provision

  14. Model of PDP

  15. e.g. cv compilation, personal career decisions e.g. learning to learn, approach to learning, learning styles, critical thinking e.g. self-efficacy, self-actualisation, purposeful learning for life professional learning and work related learning

  16. Personal Development Planning Concept related to theories of: • Experiential learning [Kolb] • Self-regulated learning [Zimmerman] • Self-efficacy [Bandura] • Person-centred learning [Rogers] • Autonomous learning & intentional learning

  17. Spot the difference Employability PDP Self Efficacy Self Efficacy Academic Achievement Work Experience Career Management Learning from Experience Career Management Skills Skills PDP Employability Vocational Knowledge

  18. The relationship between PDP and employability • PDP is a process for structuring learning about oneself, one’s subject and one’s life choices – including career and employment • Employability is about being able to apply what has been learnt and the learning process in order to function effectively in, and gain fulfilment from, the world of work • ‘The significance of PDP processes for employability development is … an important dimension of the University’s approach’ (UW 2008)

  19. EPPI Systematic Literature Review • Review Question: What evidence is there that processes that connect reflection, recording, planning and action improve student learning? • “The review provides evidence … that the processes and actions that underlie PDP do have a positive impact on student attainment and approaches to learning” See: [Gough et al 2003]

  20. Significant difference: Mann-Whitney U Test: U=1840, Z=-2.7, P<0.01

  21. Significant difference: Mann-Whitney U Test: U=1156, Z=-2.2, P<0.05

  22. Research evidence • ‘Of the students who completed questionnaires on four of the pilot studies in 2002–3, over 70 percent expressed positive statements on the value of progress files in facilitating their learning experience.’ • Pilots across the University of Glamorgan [East 2005]

  23. Research evidence • ‘There are indications … that undertaking PDP benefits students in several ways. In particular, it appears to impact on student retention by clarifying career goals and increasing motivation towards the chosen degree programme.’ • A 1st year PDP module [Monks et al 2006]

  24. Research evidence • ‘Practising therapists evaluated it very positively as a tool to support development within their role whereas an adaptation of the tool trialled by undergraduate dental students (not therapists) was very unpopular.’ [Haig 2008 on Fry 2002] • ‘Fry et al. (2002), and Pee et al. (2002) in their work with dental therapy students report that undergraduate students disliked the experience, although they recognised its value.’ [Clegg & Bradley 2006]

  25. University of Worcester Students say PDP supports • Target setting • Self-assessment, self-analysis and self-awareness • Reflection • Professional development • Personal progression • Understanding of skills for employers

  26. National Action Research Network on Researching and evaluating PDP and ePortfolio • 16 HE institutions • 3 year project • Grow practitioner researcher capability • Produce broader evidence base • Research questions include PDP’s link to developing employability

  27. Ongoing issues 1 • Different conceptions in different subjects • Professional • Skills and employability • Learning (Clegg & Bradley 2006) • ‘Staff engagement is seen as key to successful implementation. This is more likely where PDP is promoted as a tool to improve learning in the discipline rather than focusing on employability per se.’ (Haig 2008)

  28. Ongoing issues 2 • ‘Staff engagement is seen as key to successful implementation. This is more likely where PDP is promoted as a tool to improve learning in the discipline rather than focusing on employability per se.’ (Haig 2008)

  29. Some Ongoing Drivers • ‘There should continue to be evaluation of the impact of [sic] learning and the representation of learning and achievement of different forms of PDP.’ [Burgess Report 2004] • Roberts Review and QAA Code of practice: postgraduate research programmes [QAA 2004] • Foundation Degrees • ‘Encourage e-based systems of describing learning achievement and personal development planning (PDP).’ [HECFE e-learning strategy, implementation plan, 3.4]

  30. References 1 • Burgess, R. [2004] Measuring and recording student achievement: Report of the Scoping Group Available at: downloads/measuringachievement.pdf • Clegg, S. (2004) ‘Critical readings: progress files and the production of the autonomous learner’ Teaching in Higher Education 9, 3, 287-298 • Clegg, S. & Bradley, S. (2006) ‘The Implementation of Progress Files in Higher Education: Reflection as National Policy’, Higher Education 51, 4, 465–86. • Clegg, S. & Bradley, S. (2006) ‘Models of Personal Development Planning: Practice and Processes’, British Educational Research Journal 32, 1, 57–76. • Croot, D. & Gedye, S. (2006) ‘Getting the Most Out of Progress Files and Personal Development Planning’, Journal of Geography in Higher Education 30, 1, 173–9. • East, R. (2005) ‘A Progress Report on Progress Files’, Active Learning in Higher Education, 6, 2, 160–71. • Fry, H., Davenport, E. S., Woodman, T. & Pee, B. (2002) ‘Developing Progress Files: A Case Study’, Teaching in Higher Education 7, 1, 97–111. • Gough D.A.. Kiwan D. Sutcliffe S. Simpson D. and Houghton N. [2003] A systematic map and synthesis review of the effectiveness of Personal Development Planning on improving student learning. • Haigh, J. (2008) ‘Integrating progress files into the academic process: A review of case studies’Active Learning in Higher Education, 9, 1, 57-71

  31. References 2 • HESA [2009] performance indicators web site accessed January 2009 • Jackson, N. & Ward, R. (2004) ‘A Fresh Perspective on Progress Files – A Way of Representing Complex Learning and Achievement in Higher Education’, Assessment & Evaluation in Higher Education 29, 4, 423–49. • Kneale, P. (2002) ‘Developing and Embedding Reflective Portfolios in Geography’, Journal of Geography in Higher Education 26, 1, 81–94. • Monks, K. Conway, E and Muireann Ni Dhuigneain, (2006) ‘Integrating personal development and career planning: The outcomes for first year undergraduate learning’,Active Learning in Higher Education, 7, 1, 73–86 • QAA, UUK, SCoP & CoSHEP, [2001] Guidelines for He Progress File • QAA, [2004] Code of Practice: Postgraduate Research Programmes, • Roberts, G. [2002] SET for Success: The supply of people with science, technology, engineering and mathematics skills, HM Treasury • University of Worcester [2008] ‘Student employability and community engagement strategy’ • UUK [2008] ‘UUK/CBI Employability Report: Survey for case studies’ • Yorke, M. [2004] Employability in HE: what it is and what it is not LTSN