Scenario 3 – Placement students

 

Who are the learners?

 

Undergraduate students about to go on, or currently out on a years industrial placement.

 

How does the learning or support currently take place?

 

Student find out about placements by looking on the departmental UG notice board. They learn about good placements by word of mouth and they attend a placement induction workshop before they leave the University. Applications are managed via email. Once a student is out on placement they are required to submit 3 reflective reports over the course of the year. 

 

What works well?

 

Students learn a great deal though contextualising their subject knowledge in an authentic working environment. Those students who have been on placement generally achieve a better result in their degree compared to those who have not been on placement.

 

What works less well?

 

Some students are badly prepared for their placements or the placement turns out to be not what they expected. Supporting students in producing their placement reports is a challenge once the students are remote form the University. Students often feel isolated when out on placement and miss the contact with other students.

 

What improvements are desirable?

 

Effective communication is a key issue when providing support to students remote from the University. Students might make more effective choices about their placements if they could learn from the experiences of other students.