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Learning from work experience: helping young people identify and articulate learning outcomes Faith Muir and Trisha Fettes Centre for Education and Industry.

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Presentation on theme: "Learning from work experience: helping young people identify and articulate learning outcomes Faith Muir and Trisha Fettes Centre for Education and Industry."— Presentation transcript:

1 Learning from work experience: helping young people identify and articulate learning outcomes Faith Muir and Trisha Fettes Centre for Education and Industry University of Warwick

2 The Wolf Report Helping young people to obtain genuine work experience - and therefore, what the CBI calls employability skills - should be one of the highest priorities for education policy in the next few years. It is far more important than even a few years ago, because of labour market trends; and is made critical by the impact on youth unemployment of the most recent recession. Wolf, March 2011: 130 2

3 Post-16 work experience, progression and HE - CEI Symposium: key findings From discussion groups: We should get away from the idea that work experience is a thing…. We need to re-focus on learning and achievement … including developing students ability to identify and articulate their own learning, and also consider how that learning may be applied back into their course at school, college or university. MD of an SME: As an employer, its a problem when we get identikit applications. We like young people to come to us with a clear view of what they want to learn. 3

4 CEI Symposium findings continued Young people should have the best quality (not just quantity of) work experience at the time they need it, with guidance and support Further research/discussion is needed on what is meant by quality and progression of learning; and dissemination of good practice Equality of opportunity is an important issue to be continually addressed 4

5 CEI Symposium findings continued Encourage learners to take increasing responsibility for their work experience/learning as they move through education Encourage continuity in learning through a collaborative approach, e.g. on-going conversations between learners, employers and staff (in schools, colleges, HE) Student voice is important in ensuring fitness-for- purpose: what students see as relevant, understand about work experience and why they are doing it 5

6 Post-16 student research – key findings Learning gained from pre-16 work experience Something new, an insight into a specific job, practical skills Skills in communication, IT, working with others/ teamwork Time management, a sense of professionalism, responsibility 6

7 Post-16 student research continued Some of the benefits of pre-16 work experience Develops a better understanding of the world of work Helps you to develop a work ethic and prepare you for life beyond school Gives a real world exposure… Matured me as a student Motivates GCSE success Allows you to build on existing skills Good way to apply the skills you learn in school to a working environment 7

8 Post-16 student research continued Pre-16 work experience Allows for the development of ideas and aspirations Often you dont know what you have learnt until you have to think about your post-16 placement It can help in deciding on the type of placement, how to get the most out of it, knowing what to expect and how to plan better 8

9 Post-16 student research continued Learning gained from post-16 work experience Skills in communication, IT, working with others/ teamwork Subject skills (scientific, mathematical) Practical skills Insights into specific jobs and work environments Personal organisation skills, time management Independence; self-reliance; how to get the job done 9

10 Post-16 student research continued Some of the benefits of post-16 work experience Helps in making career decisions – e.g. know best route to take; learn more about chosen career pathway; eliminate/confirm initial career choice; know preferred type of work environment; obtain expert advice; consider university Encourages students to do better in current studies – e.g. informs subject choice; develops understanding of the relevance of subject knowledge/ skills to the workplace, improves IT skills Equips students to make successful applications – e.g. a key experience; something to talk about in interview 10

11 Post-16 student recommendations Dont doubt it until you try it! Advice to other students: a) Choose your placement carefully: …so its suited to you dont rely on school-sourced placements unless you genuinely dont know what to do 11

12 b) Have the right attitude before work experience Be prepared – know your stuff about the company and the job – to make the most of it Make sure you are passionate about where you are going and know what you want to do Do something related to your career aspirations have an open mind; … a positive attitude c) Have the right attitude during your placement Give a good first impression; … work hard Have fun, stay safe and enjoy it – use the experience to your advantage … get as much experience as you can 12

13 Next steps Networking to identify related research activities Dissemination of examples of practice Second work experience symposium: work experience, progression and employers 12 March 2013, University of Warwick Contacts: Faith Muir: Trisha Fettes: 13

14 References Wolf, A. (March 2011) Review of Vocational Education – The Wolf Report Department for Education (2011) Wolf Review of Vocational Education Government Response Department for Education Consultation on removing the duty to deliver work-related learning at key stage 4 Summary of consultation responses 6 October 2011 to 4 January


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