Evaluating a multi-disciplinary virtual WIL project

Jones, M, Crist, G, Engels, B, Montague, A and De Silva, S 2008, 'Evaluating a multi-disciplinary virtual WIL project', in WACE ACEN Asia Pacific Conference 2008 E-Proceedings, Sydney, Australia, 30 September-3 October 2008.

Document type: Conference Paper
Collection: Conference Papers

Title Evaluating a multi-disciplinary virtual WIL project
Author(s) Jones, M
Crist, G
Engels, B
Montague, A
De Silva, S
Year 2008
Conference name Work Integrated Learning: Transforming Futures
Conference location Sydney, Australia
Conference dates 30 September-3 October 2008
Proceedings title WACE ACEN Asia Pacific Conference 2008 E-Proceedings
Publisher University of Technology Sydney
Place of publication Sydney, Australia
Abstract The knowledge-rich global economy of the twenty-first century requires graduates with both content knowledge and work-ready capabilities. The challenge for Higher Education is to provide students with environments in which theory is combined with practical experience such that students combine their content knowledge with cognitive skills for real world problem solution. This need is driving universities to encourage work integrated learning opportunities within curriculum. While such real-world experiences do assist students to develop these cognate skills, there are also limitations to these experiences that create further challenges. These include, first, the ability of industry to provide WIL opportunities for all the students who desire them, especially international students who may lack local industry knowledge. Second, the speed of change in industry requires graduates who can operate for the future rather than simply the present. Third, the need to provide a safe learning opportunity for students in which they can experiment with the outcomes of varying decisions without fear that a wrong response will have adverse commercial repercussions. Recognition of these challenges requires universities to design new opportunities for WIL that go beyond simply placing students in industry. This paper will present the findings of a practice-based pilot project undertaken to provide a rich WIL experience for students. The learning project in which they were engaged co-located students from several disciplines in a safe environment in which they explored the challenges of working across disciplines while applying their discipline-based knowledge beyond the boundaries of a singular disciplinary discourse.
Subjects Higher Education
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