International work integrated learning (WIL) in undergraduate paramedicine programs: a cross-sectional survey of practice models in Australasia
Higher Education, Skills and Work-Based Learning
Article publication date: 29 September 2020
Issue publication date: 17 June 2021
The proliferation of undergraduate paramedicine programs has led to a surge in demand for work integrated learning (WIL), placing pressure on domestic ambulance service placement capacity. The objective of this study was to establish a baseline understanding of international WIL in paramedicine university programs.
A cross-sectional study design was utilized to gather data from Australasian universities offering undergraduate paramedicine. A telephone survey was used to gather quantitative and qualitative data using a tailored questionnaire.
Of 15 eligible paramedicine programs, seven program leads participated. All offered international WIL, predominantly short-duration format in locations including United Kingdom, USA, Israel, Nepal, Indonesia, Timor-Leste, New Zealand, South Africa, Finland, Canada and Vanuatu. Two distinct models were identified: academic-accompanied, group “study tours” and unaccompanied individual placements. International WIL is common in paramedicine but placement models, rationale and expected learning experiences are diverse.
International WIL is an increasing component of paramedicine and other health discipline degrees, yet the pedagogical rationale for their inclusion and typology is not always clear. This paper provides an insight into the variance in international WIL typology in a single health discipline highlighting the heterogeneity and need for future research linking into the structure, support and assessment of international WIL.
Sections of this work have previously been presented at the Paramedics Australasia International Conference, 2017, in Melbourne, Australia.
Johnson, S., Thyer, L. and Simpson, P. (2021), "International work integrated learning (WIL) in undergraduate paramedicine programs: a cross-sectional survey of practice models in Australasia", Higher Education, Skills and Work-Based Learning, Vol. 11 No. 3, pp. 725-738. https://doi.org/10.1108/HESWBL-06-2020-0120
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