Deakin University

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Evaluation methodology for work integrated learning - placements : a discussion paper

conference contribution
posted on 2010-01-01, 00:00 authored by Kathryn Von TreuerKathryn Von Treuer, Vanessa SturreVanessa Sturre, Sophie Keele, J McLeod
Background: This paper will address the evaluation of WIL (placements) in order to provide a strategy to improve performance in universities' WIL as benchmarked in the AUSSE, GDS and placement unit feedback.
Overview of issue: Although WIL placements are important and valuable for student engagement, learning, graduate employability and industry partnerships, there are few empirical studies or reviews that inform evaluation methodology for them. The assessment of placement outcomes and the student experience is typically more complex than evaluation of a standard university unit because of the wide variation that occurs with placements. Students are likely to be working in different organisations, and working on different projects within their various disciplines. Adding to this complexity, the organisation supervisor is an additional stakeholder critical to the placement experience, and who ultimately makes the judgment of student performance. Although an organisation supervisor may complete an individual feedback form for their students, generally this information is not strategically aligned within a broader university evaluation process. Initial examination of available literature revealed that the multi-dimensional perspective (organisational supervisor, placement co-ordinator and student) is not usually incorporated into evaluation of placements to inform continuous improvement for example. There are gaps in the evaluation process which could be addressed through more  comprehensive evaluation that could be utilised across Faculties and Institutions. In 2010, we will conduct an inter-faculty project to develop and trial an evaluation methodology for WIL placements. It will incorporate a triangulated approach including student, organisation and university supervisor feedback. Preliminary results gained from this project will be discussed.
Argument: An evaluation methodology that is inclusive of a triangulated approach, would provide university stakeholders with comprehensive feedback that could be used to strategically inform continuous improvement efforts in Institutions in the areas of WIL placements.
Implications: The importance of triangulated data gathering leading to a comprehensive evaluation and subsequent improvement strategies will be concluded. Suggested evaluation process and potential tools will be presented.



Biannual Australian Collaborative Education Network National Conference (3rd : 2010 : Perth, W.A.)


489 - 497


Australian Collaborative Education Network (ACEN)


Perth, W.A.

Place of publication

Rockhampton, Qld.

Start date


End date






Publication classification

E1 Full written paper - refereed

Copyright notice

2010, Australian Collaborative Education Network


M [Campbell

Title of proceedings

ACEN 2010 : Proceedings of the 3rd Biannual Australian Collaborative Education Network National Conference

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