NCL8007 : Career Development for Masters level students

Semester 1 Credit Value: 10
Semester 2 Credit Value: 10
ECTS Credits: 10.0


To develop students who can independently self-manage, proactively interact and ethically apply their knowledge and skills in a work-related context where they will also practice the application and communication of knowledge from their academic or professional discipline

Original Summary:
The Career Development module offers students the opportunity to undertake work-related learning in a variety of different environments, both on and off the University campus. In all cases, students will enhance their employability (see www.ncl.ac.uk/nclplus) and personal enterprise skills as well as contributing towards meeting the aims of the host organisation.

Outline Of Syllabus

The Career Development module offers students the opportunity to undertake work-related learning in a variety of different environments, both on and off the University campus. See www.ncl.ac.uk/careers for more information. Supported by their module leader, students will reflect on and manage their own learning and development. Students will enhance their employability and personal enterprise skills as well as contributing towards meeting the aims of the host organisation.

For M-level modules, students will also practice the application and communication of knowledge from their academic or professional discipline, dealing with complex issues both systematically and creatively, and showing originality in tackling and solving problems
Students will be expected to negotiate with the host organisation to introduce to the customers/clients a relevant topic or theme from their own academic or professional discipline. In previous years, Civil and Structural Engineering students have undertaken activities such as developing awareness of recycling in a middle school, building a tower from straws and A4 card to support a £2 coin in a secondary school specialising in engineering, teaching A-level frame analysis in the sixth form of a school, developing and submitting a plan to solve a problem with flooding at Wallington Hall. Masters Level Education students have worked with a secondary school council to extend ‘the student voice’ in the school, and introduced a programme of language acquisition for children of refugees and asylum-seekers in a Primary School.
The student will be expected to undertake appropriate research in order to communicate this topic in an accurate and relevant way to suit the age and ability of the customers/clients or to apply the relevant theory in practice to the benefit of the host organisation.

Students will join the module at the start of semester one and will be able to some extent to balance their work for the module across both semesters, with marks being allocated only in semester two. Students will complete a minimum of 70 hours of direct engagement with the organisation hosting the work-related learning spread over at least 10 weeks. Different host organisations may require other constraints e.g. number of contact visits made.

Students will need to confirm with their academic school which one or more of the different routes are available to them on their particular degree programme:
•       Learning from work opportunities include working for the Careers Service Communications Team or another University service, undertaking a short-term placement in a local business, or demonstrating learning based on current term-time job or other work (which could be unpaid).
•       Tutoring and mentoring opportunities include undertaking a placement in a local school or college, working with learners in a variety of different community learning environments or mentoring other students in the University.
•       Volunteering opportunities include working with a local community group (through SCAN) or working as a volunteer officer in the Union Society.

Students will need to complete appropriate pre-requisites for their particular choice of context e.g. ISA registration and CRB application for student tutoring. This may involve contacting the organisation or unit that is hosting the work-related learning.

The cycle of activities for students is as follows:

Prior to starting the module:
•       read Career Development Module web page at www.ncl.ac.uk/careers;
•       check with own academic school which routes are available;
•       formally register for module with university;
•       complete pre-requisites for particular route e.g. ISA/CRB application for student tutoring.

At the start of the academic year:
•       confirm that all pre-requisites for work-related context have been met;
•       attend an induction training workshop;
•       (student tutoring route only) receive placement allocation;
•       negotiate calendar of activity and d

Teaching Methods

Teaching Activities
Category Activity Number Length Student Hours Comment
Guided Independent StudyAssessment preparation and completion135:0035:00Support - email, drop in and additional tutiorials
Scheduled Learning And Teaching ActivitiesLecture11:001:00Career Development lecture
Placement/Study AbroadEmployer-based learning170:0070:00Direct engagement with placement
Guided Independent StudyDirected research and reading150:0050:00Blackboard Module Study Aids section and secondary research
Scheduled Learning And Teaching ActivitiesSmall group teaching20:301:001-1 tutorial
Scheduled Learning And Teaching ActivitiesSmall group teaching11:001:00Group tutorials
Scheduled Learning And Teaching ActivitiesSmall group teaching111:0011:00Seminars
Guided Independent StudyReflective learning activity124:0024:00Maintain a reflective log
Guided Independent StudyStudent-led group activity71:007:00Study groups
Teaching Rationale And Relationship

Training is provided at the beginning of the module to develop both a professional approach and skilled behaviour while attending a work placement. A series of workshops are then provided to concentrate student focus on the graduate skills that they are required to develop and demonstrate over the course of their placement and articulate during module assessment and to introduce them to theories of personal and professional development. Practical activity in the form of a work placement provides students with a context within which they are expected to practice experiential learning through reflection, critical analysis and continuous improvement. Seminars are used to facilitate discussion of the assessment criteria in relation to students’ individual experiences at their work placement and to help them to prepare for assessment. Tutorials and self directed learning resources are provided throughout the module that enable students to create links between their placement experience and the knowledge and skills they have acquired though attending training, workshops, practicals and seminars. Self-directed learning resources are available from Blackboard which have been designed to be completed pre and post attendance at formal teaching and learning sessions and, in combination with directed learning opportunities, provide students with a comprehensive framework to support their progress through the module.
The aims of the module are drawn from the Newcastle University Graduate Skills Framework. Students will achieve the learning outcomes for the module through full engagement with the activities indicated above.

Assessment Methods

The format of resits will be determined by the Board of Examiners

Description Length Semester When Set Percentage Comment
Oral Examination502A50Provided students have completed over 90% of 'placement visits', they are examined by assessed interview (simulated job interview).
Other Assessment
Description Semester When Set Percentage Comment
Reflective log1M25A critical review of progress made towards module learning outcomes during semester 1.
Prof skill assessmnt2M25Host organisation supervisor evaluation of student competence.
Assessment Rationale And Relationship

The assessment components are designed to develop and reward effective performance as described in the Newcastle University Graduate Skills Framework provided for the students (linked to definitions of employability in Newcastle University and sources such as www.prospects.ac.uk).

Students are expected set goals that relate how they will demonstrate the module learning outcomes. They are expected to maintain a log to reflect on their planned actions taken to progress these goals. Students will submit a critical review of progress made towards module learning outcomes during semester 1. Feedback from this assignment will help their preparations for the main assessment component of the module.

The oral examination is structured like a simulated job interview to give students the experience of articulating their development to prospective employers. The oral examination requires students to demonstrate all knowledge and skill outcomes for this module through their responses to a series of questions that map onto the assessment criteria that is provided for the students. Only students that have completed a minimum of 90% of placement visits will be examined. Students that have not completed 90% of placement visits by the end of the University Examination period and have not had a PEC approved by their academic school, will be considered to have been absent without formal approval from their examination and a mark of 0 (zero) will be returned for this component of module assessment.

The host organisation supervisor evaluation of student competence enables students’ application of all module knowledge and skills outcomes in carrying out their duties at the placement to be assessed in situ and considered as part of the overall module mark.

Reading Lists