Student Engagement for Employability: A Belonging Project case study

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Research and Development in Higher Education Vol. 38: Learning for Life and Work in a Complex World

July, 2015, 528 pages
Published by
T. Thomas, E. Levin, P. Dawson, K. Fraser & R. Hadgraft

More than ever there is a need for professionals who are responsive to economic, social, cultural/global, technical and environmental change. The current employment climate demands graduates who can work flexibly across a range of business contexts (Wright, Davis, & Bucolo, 2013). In turn this requires a broad range of employability skills and knowledge learned in many contexts and through a range of experiences.

This paper draws on the principles of The Belonging Project, a four-year qualitative research project based at RMIT University in Melbourne, Australia. The Belonging Project has explored curricular and co-curricular interventions to support key employability capacities across the whole of student lifecycle. The Belonging Project’s research has highlighted the importance of supporting the development of disciplinary, interdisciplinary, and global/intercultural competencies throughout student lifecycles. This paper draws on focus group data, interviews, and participant observation in support of The Belonging Project Narrative Model, an approach to student engagement for employability.

Keywords: Employability, creative industries, belonging