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Collaborative Initiatives and Work-based Learning Opportunities: A Case Study

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Author(s): John Kerins

Journal: ITALICS
ISSN 1473-7507

Volume: 6;
Issue: 1;
Date: 2007;
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Keywords: work-based learning | employabilty | work-based assessment | software Development

ABSTRACT
Employability is a prominent concern as higher education considers its relationship with employers in equipping graduates to operate successfully in their chosen careers. This paper discusses key issues surrounding work-based learning provision and focuses on recent experience in utilising university resources to provide placements.Collaboration between the Centre for Public Health Research and the Informatics Centre at the University of Chester has led to the implementation of software solutions to support data monitoring and analysis projects. Plans to expand this development provided an opportunity to utilise the University’s Work-based Learning programme to provide stimulating student placements.This paper evaluates the placements in the light of recent findings in the literature and reflects on the successes and limitations of the initiative. The paper also assesses the scope to consolidate and develop the process in view of the likely need for an expansion of employment-focused learning opportunities. Participant feedback demonstrates very positive outcomes from the initiative but a wider investigation would be more representative and might usefully seek to compare these placements with students’ experience in external organisations.
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