Work experience as an education and
training strategy: New approaches for the 21st century
the work experience typology (see concept), the
project has been able to identify areas of ‘innovation within context’
in relation to the five models. One of the project’s clearest messages
is that practitioners continue to develop highly innovative approaches
to work experience despite the constraints imposed by national education
and training systems. Several of the project’s case studies provide particularly
good examples of situational and collectively planned innovations that
have been designed to assist students in developing a more ‘connective
perspective’ about the relationship between their formal and informal
learning. Included are the following examples:
The Swedish KfS Gymnasium specialises in teaching business administration
at upper secondary level; students enroled for either the academic or vocational
programmes follow the same curriculum during the first academic year; based
on a progressive pedagogy, they are encouraged to view their school experience
as a form of work experience, where they work and learn with one another,
with their teachers and with outside experts.
At East Berkshire College in the UK, the College’s Media Faculty
has negotiated with Legoland, UK (Windsor) to provide students with a work
experience that involves producing Legoland’s Staff Newsletter. This work
experience allows students to develop their media-related skills (i.e.
journalism and production) and to ‘connect’ their formal and informal learning.
Aalborg Technical College in Denmark provides an illustration of
the application of the ‘connective model’ to the education of machinists.
The school has introduced into the curriculum some new features, namely
the idea of a personal education plan and the use of a student logbook,
which originally arose in another context. A further development has been
to offer students access to a cross-disciplinary curriculum and a greater
range of learning activities and processes (Griffiths
et al. 2001, pp. 42, 46-48).
final project report provides further details of innovative
practice derived from the case studies
(Griffiths et al. 2001, pp. 42-48).
also project info on WEX21C.