Reconstructing spaces and places through blended work integrated learning

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Research and Development in Higher Education: The Place of Learning and Teaching Vol. 36

July, 2013, 534 pages
Published by
Frielick, S., Buissink-Smith, N., Wyse, P., Billot, J., Hallas, J. and Whitehead, E.

This paper considers the emergence and ongoing development of an embedded, student- negotiated work placement model of Work Integrated Learning (WIL) in the engineering and built environment disciplines at an Australian metropolitan university. The characteristics of the model and a continuous improvement strategy are provided. The model is characterised by large student cohorts independently sourcing and negotiating relevant work placements and completing at least one, mandatory credit-bearing WIL unit. Through ongoing analyses and evaluation of the model more experiential and collaborative learning approaches have been adopted. This has included the creation of blended learning spaces using technology. The paper focuses on the five year journey travelled by the teaching team as they embarked on ways to improve curriculum, pedagogy, administrative processes and assessment - effectively relocating much of their interaction with students online. The insights derived from this rich, single case study should be of interest to others considering alternative ways of responding to increasing student enrolments in WIL and the impact of blended learning in this context.

Keywords: Work Integrated Learning (WIL), student-negotiated, blended learning 

Reconstructing spaces and places through blended work integrated learning

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Peach, Deborah & Gomez, Rafael & Ruinard, Elizabeth