Principles of Best Practice for the Inclusion of Work Experience in the Curricula of Further Education and Training Programmes
Further Education and Training (FET) , Work Experience
This working paper presents a review of the literature on work-integrated learning and proposes key best practice principles in this area for the future. The main focus of the paper is on work experience as it relates to the Post Leaving Certificate Programme (PLC) at Levels 5 and 6 of the National Framework of Qualifications (NFQ). It is presented in the context of the ever evolving world of work and the vision for further education and training outlined in the SOLAS FET Strategy 2020-2024. The paper outlines the rationale for work experience and proposes an innovative model where is it embedded in the curriculum rather than as a separate entity in itself. This model emphasises the importance of an integrated learning approach between the practical, the theoretical and the cognitive aspects of a programme. The model also places significance on the nature of the relationship between the college and the employer. The paper recognises some of the key challenges involved in work placements and makes recommendations based on the research undertaken. It concludes by advocating for work experience to be an integral part of the development of the new Level 5 and Level 6 programmes and flags an opportunity which now exists both for the FET sector and employers to move to another level of collaboration and excellence in terms of learning at college and in the workplace.
Maunsell, P. (2023) Principles of Best Practice for the Inclusion of Work Experience in the Curricula of Further Education and Training Programmes. Working Paper 1. LCETB.