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Article
Publication date: 16 March 2015

Evangeline Elijido-Ten and Louise Kloot

Work-integrated learning (WIL) helps improve the work readiness of accounting graduates. The purpose of this paper is to explore the role played by large and…

Abstract

Purpose

Work-integrated learning (WIL) helps improve the work readiness of accounting graduates. The purpose of this paper is to explore the role played by large and small-to-medium enterprise (SME) employers in providing experiential learning opportunities to accounting students in an Australian higher education context.

Design/methodology/approach

Case-study data for this research were collected from the case university’s processes, semi-structured in-depth interviews with employer representatives and online survey with WIL students.

Findings

The analysis reveals that both SMEs and large firms provide good training opportunities that enhance the student’s experiential learning particularly when proper WIL structures for pre-placement processes, training, supervision and performance reviews are in place. The results also confirm that WIL is seen as a positive experience by employers and students alike.

Originality/value

There is a three-way partnership between the university, employers and students in a WIL contract. Calls for collaborative research involving all three parties have been made to enhance WIL programs. This study is a response to this call.

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Article
Publication date: 11 September 2020

Heinrich Oosthuizen, Paul De Lange, Trevor Wilmshurst and Nicola Beatson

The purpose of this study is to explore the reasons why international accounting students in higher education in Australia do not accept leadership roles in academic…

Abstract

Purpose

The purpose of this study is to explore the reasons why international accounting students in higher education in Australia do not accept leadership roles in academic teams, considering the importance employers attach to leadership and teamwork graduate attributes.

Design/methodology/approach

Adopting the Keating et al. (2014) ready, willing and able (RWA) leadership framework, this qualitative study uses a narrative textual approach to analyse the data from responses to open-ended questions recorded in interviews with a sample of Master of Professional Accounting (MPA) students (N = 12) undertaking leadership-in-team roles in a management and cost Accounting unit (N = 110) within an Australian higher education accounting program.

Findings

The results of this study suggest that a lack of past work experience disadvantages accounting students in being ‘ready’ to adopt leadership roles in teams. Self-interested behaviour results in students not being ‘willing’ to adopt leadership roles. Students perceive business simulation and work-integrated learning activities to hold the potential to improve their ‘ability’ to lead.

Practical implications

The study offers a conceptual schema for student leadership development, suggesting that accounting curricula in higher education should include the assessment of scaffolded leadership development activities. Mentorship roles in academic teams should also be explored.

Originality/value

To the authors’ knowledge, this is the first application of the RWA framework to explore accounting students’ predisposition to accepting leadership roles in teams. Informed by the student narrative, the authors offer a future focused RWA schema as a practical guide for educators to embed leadership development in the accounting curriculum.

Details

Meditari Accountancy Research, vol. ahead-of-print no. ahead-of-print
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 2049-372X

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Article
Publication date: 6 April 2020

Cookie M. Govender and Terje I. Vaaland

This paper aims to identify challenges in business school and business collaboration when implementing work-integrated learning (WIL) as a vehicle to enhance student…

Abstract

Purpose

This paper aims to identify challenges in business school and business collaboration when implementing work-integrated learning (WIL) as a vehicle to enhance student work-life realities and possible employability opportunities.

Design/methodology/approach

This paper adopts a five-step literature synthesis method. In-depth review and analysis of the existing literature of WIL challenges during the period 2009 to 2018 was conducted.

Findings

The literature review revealed five major gaps identified in WIL projects, resulting from a lack of institutional support, mentoring and assessment, student readiness, curriculum relevance and host motivation. These challenges were related to differences or gaps in the business school and business domains. Seven propositions are suggested as a starting point to manage the five gaps when initiating WIL as a successful learning project.

Practical implications

Our syntheses of challenges hampering WIL projects is highly relevant for deepening business school awareness and when planning to launch WIL projects. The paper presents a realistic view on school-business interaction involving WIL students.

Originality/value

The paper contributes by enabling WIL practitioners to gain a systematic overview of WIL challenges and pitfalls. Negative factors impacting on business school and business domains are highlighted in the model and paper propositions. Awareness, mindfulness and avoiding the pitfalls and gaps facing WIL students, schools and participating businesses ensure effective, efficient and successful WIL experiences and projects.

Details

Education + Training, vol. ahead-of-print no. ahead-of-print
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 0040-0912

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Article
Publication date: 9 April 2018

Margarietha Johanna de Villiers Scheepers, Renee Barnes, Michael Clements and Alix Jayne Stubbs

The purpose of this paper is to propose an experiential entrepreneurship work-integrated learning (EE WIL) model recognising that the development of an entrepreneurial…

Abstract

Purpose

The purpose of this paper is to propose an experiential entrepreneurship work-integrated learning (EE WIL) model recognising that the development of an entrepreneurial mindset enables graduates to manage their careers in uncertain labour markets. The model shows how students develop relationships with their professional community, and not only a few employers.

Design/methodology/approach

The pedagogical underpinning of the conceptual model, attributes associated with the entrepreneurial mindset and relationships between the student, professional community and university are explained, and illustrated through a case study at the University of the Sunshine Coast.

Findings

The EE WIL model enables students to develop agency through structured engagement with a professional community, facilitating the development of bridging social capital. Bonding social capital can be developed through intense, sustained interaction between students and their professional community.

Practical implications

WIL curricula should be scaffolded and directed towards developing sustained interaction and information sharing, underpinned by professional community norms. This approach enables students to develop an aligned professional identity and emotional attachment to the professional community. The experiential development of an entrepreneurial mindset enables students to solve career challenges, by viewing these as opportunities. Professional communities and universities both share the responsibilities of preparing the future graduate workforce.

Originality/value

The conceptual model draws on effectual entrepreneurship pedagogy and contributes to the WIL literature, showing that an entrepreneurial mindset can be cultivated experientially through an intensive, emotional and authentic learning experience.

Details

Education + Training, vol. 60 no. 4
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 0040-0912

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Book part
Publication date: 29 August 2017

Karsten E. Zegwaard, Matthew Campbell and T. Judene Pretti

Much rhetoric around the construct of a work-ready graduate has focused on the technical abilities of students to fulfill the expectations of the future workplace. Efforts…

Abstract

Much rhetoric around the construct of a work-ready graduate has focused on the technical abilities of students to fulfill the expectations of the future workplace. Efforts have been made to extend from the technical skills (e.g., skills in calculation for engineers) to include soft or behavioral skills (e.g., communication). However, within previous models of understanding of the work-ready graduate there has been little done to explore them as critical moral agents within the workplace. That is, whilst the focus has been on being work-ready, it is argued here that in current and future workplaces it is more important for university graduates to be profession-ready. Our understanding of the profession-ready graduate is characterized by the ability to demonstrate capacities in critical thinking and reflection, and to have an ability to navigate the ethical challenges and shape the organizational culture of the future workplace.

This chapter aims to explore a movement of thinking away from simply aspiring to develop work-ready graduates, expanding this understanding to argue for the development of profession-ready graduates. The chapter begins with an exploration of the debates around the characteristics of being work-ready, and through a consideration of two professional elements: professional identity and critical moral agency, argues for a reframing of work-readiness towards professional-readiness. The chapter then considers the role of work-integrated learning (WIL) in being able to support the development of the profession-ready graduate.

Details

Work-Integrated Learning in the 21st Century
Type: Book
ISBN: 978-1-78714-859-8

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Article
Publication date: 18 April 2020

AnneMarie Dorland, David J. Finch, Nadège Levallet, Simon Raby, Stephanie Ross and Alexandra Swiston

Work-integrated learning (WIL) has emerged as a leading pedagogy that blends theory with application. In recent years, policymakers, educators and practitioners have…

Abstract

Purpose

Work-integrated learning (WIL) has emerged as a leading pedagogy that blends theory with application. In recent years, policymakers, educators and practitioners have called for a significant expansion of WIL, one which would enable every undergraduate student has at least one WIL experience during their program of study. Despite these appeals, there remains a significant divide between the aspiration of universality and the realities. Consequently, the study asks the following question: How can post-secondary institutions expand their WIL initiatives to universal levels that deliver transformative learning?

Design/methodology/approach

In this exploratory study, the authors leverage research from entrepreneurship and management to develop a conceptual model of universal work-integrated learning (UWIL). Entrepreneurship and management research is relevant in this context, as the rapid introduction of a UWIL has transformative implications at the level of the individual (e.g. students, faculty), organization (e.g. processes) and the learning ecosystem (e.g. partners, policymakers) — issues at the core of research in entrepreneurship and management over the past two decades.

Findings

At the core of the authors’ proposal is the contention that the high-impact talent challenge and the delivery of UWIL must be reframed as not simply a challenge facing educators, but as a challenge facing the broader ecosystem of the workforce and the larger community. The authors propose the implementation of UWIL through an open innovation framework based on five strategic pillars.

Originality/value

Ultimately, the findings the authors present here can be leveraged by all members of the learning ecosystem, including administrators, faculty, policymakers, accreditation bodies and community partners, as a framework for operationalizing a UWIL strategy. The study’s model challenges all members of this learning ecosystem to operationalize a UWIL strategy. This entrepreneurial reframing introduces the potential for innovating the delivery of UWIL by leveraging the broader learning ecosystem to drive efficiencies and transformative learning.

Details

Education + Training, vol. 62 no. 4
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 0040-0912

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Article
Publication date: 11 May 2015

Ruth Stoker

Blogging has become a well-established method of online communication and publication, used by individuals and organisations to disseminate news, ideas and information. In…

Abstract

Purpose

Blogging has become a well-established method of online communication and publication, used by individuals and organisations to disseminate news, ideas and information. In their earlier forms, blogs were used as online diaries, but have now evolved into complex digital environments. The purpose of this paper is to consider whether blogging can be framed as a mode of work-integrated learning in the context of journalism and media education, and to ask whether blogging can develop transferable skills useful in graduate-level employment.

Design/methodology/approach

Semi-structured interviews were conducted with established undergraduate bloggers to investigate which skills and attributes were developed through blogging.

Findings

When evaluated against the Prospects UK list of graduate attributes (the Government career’s service) blogging allows the development of the vast majority of transferable skills, abilities and behaviours expected of graduates. It is necessary to structure the curriculum to ensure that blogging is taught, and blogging activity monitored and evaluated, so that journalism undergraduates maximise the opportunities offered by blogging and fully reflect on their experiences.

Originality/value

This paper argues that these online environments, with their associated communities, offer journalism students opportunities for work-integrated learning. It argues that blog environments have the potential to enable students to develop journalism-specific skills, and enhance transferable graduate attributes including creativity, sophisticated communication competencies, initiative and problem solving. It suggests that blogging offers a platform for accessing experiential learning, and as such should be considered within a curriculum for work-integrated learning in the journalism and media subject area.

Details

Higher Education, Skills and Work-Based Learning, vol. 5 no. 2
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 2042-3896

Keywords

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Article
Publication date: 22 December 2020

Diane Bender

Professional program assessment is necessary in an accreditation process, in order to ensure educational quality and public accountability. One avenue of assessment is…

Abstract

Purpose

Professional program assessment is necessary in an accreditation process, in order to ensure educational quality and public accountability. One avenue of assessment is through an internship. The challenge is to determine how evidence from this indirect learning experience can aid in accreditation. The purpose of this paper is to describe the use of internship supervisor evaluation feedback within the accreditation process for a professional interior design degree program.

Design/methodology/approach

In this study, internship assessment was provided by feedback from intern supervisors. Ten years of supervisor feedback were analyzed using descriptive statistics and a content analysis of supervisor comments.

Findings

Two hundred forty-seven internship supervisor evaluation documents were analyzed. Overall, supervisors positively evaluated the performance of the intern as Good to Excellent. A majority of supervisors (91%) provided comments that were positive yet vague, as most could not differentiate between the intern and the intern's performance.

Practical implications

This study links experiential learning to its evidence that can be used in an accreditation process. The challenges for educators in developing an assessment tool useful for accreditation evidence and to be shared by multiple program degree stakeholders are also described.

Originality/value

Research on internships usually focuses on the student's viewpoint. This study is original in that it examines the use of internship supervisor's evidence in program accreditation.

Details

Education + Training, vol. 63 no. 2
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 0040-0912

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Article
Publication date: 9 November 2015

Catriona Gribble, Jill Blackmore and Mark Rahimi

The purpose of this paper is to report on a three-year Australian study of international business and accounting students and the transition to employment. For…

Abstract

Purpose

The purpose of this paper is to report on a three-year Australian study of international business and accounting students and the transition to employment. For international students seeking to differentiate themselves in a highly competitive global labour market, foreign work experience is now an integral part of the overseas study “package”. Work-integrated learning (WIL) is seen to provide critical “employability” knowledge and skills, however, international students have low participation rates. The high value placed on WIL among international students poses challenges for Australia as well as opportunities. Understanding the issues surrounding international students and WIL is closely linked to Australia’s continued success in the international education sector which has broad, long-term, social and economic implications.

Design/methodology/approach

This paper draws on 59 interviews with a range of stakeholders including international students, universities, government, employers and professional bodies. Central to the paper is an in-depth case study of WIL in the business and accounting discipline at one Australian university.

Findings

Providing international students with access to discipline-related work experience has emerged as a critical issue for Australian universities. The study finds that enhancing the employability skills of internationals students via integrated career education, a focus on English language proficiency and “soft skills” development are central to success in WIL. Meeting the growing demand for WIL among international students requires a multipronged approach which hinges on cooperation between international students, universities, employers and government.

Originality/value

This project aims to fill a critical knowledge gap by advancing theories in relation to international students and WIL. While there is a significant body of research in the fields of international education and WIL, there is an absence of research exploring the intersection between the two fields. The study will contribute to the advancement of knowledge in both fields by exploring the emerging issue of WIL and international students.

Details

Higher Education, Skills and Work-Based Learning, vol. 5 no. 4
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 2042-3896

Keywords

Content available
Article
Publication date: 10 February 2021

Abena Dadze-Arthur and Anita Mörth

This paper's twofold purpose is, first, to present ZELPH ['sɛlf], a self-assessment instrument that enables those developing the pedagogy of work-integrating study…

Abstract

Purpose

This paper's twofold purpose is, first, to present ZELPH ['sɛlf], a self-assessment instrument that enables those developing the pedagogy of work-integrating study programmes in higher education (HE) systematically to surface the intended and unintended outcomes of their programme's approach to integrating professional practice into an academic course. Secondly, the paper reports on a small pilot study with programme staff from five different HE institutions in various countries who tested ZELPH.

Design/methodology/approach

ZELPH operationalises aspects of key theories on work-integrating learning pedagogy, and thereby enables a simplified depiction of the reality of combining classroom-based and worksite-based learning. Programme staff from Germany, the UK, France, South Africa and Taiwan applied the instrument to their respective work-integrating study programmes and evaluated its perceived value and feasibility.

Findings

The findings suggest that ZELPH offers value as a practical instrument, in particular to those less familiar with developing work-integrating learning pedagogy as well as to those keen to compare programmes across national, cultural and institutional contexts.

Originality/value

ZELPH contributes to addressing the lack of practically applicable instruments to support the design and international benchmarking of work-integrating learning pedagogy in HE.

Details

Journal of Work-Applied Management, vol. ahead-of-print no. ahead-of-print
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 2205-2062

Keywords

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