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ACE3210 : Your Future - occupational awareness

  • Offered for Year: 2021/22
  • Module Leader(s): Dr Catherine Douglas
  • Other Staff: Ms Lara Hope, Miss Helen Atkinson
  • Owning School: Natural and Environmental Sciences
  • Teaching Location: Newcastle City Campus
Semester 2 Credit Value: 10
ECTS Credits: 5.0


The module aims to enhance:
1) the students’ awareness of the wider occupational context of graduate destinations related to their discipline and personal interests and
2) their resourcefulness in relation to personal development though reflecting on skills and attributes and formulating professional and personal development strategies.

Outline Of Syllabus

The Module offers students an opportunity to explore an occupation (industry sector or research) holistically and engage in personal development. It is 100 hours of time to focus on their future.

Through a case study the students will independently research an occupation of personal interest (this may be in for example, the commercial sector, research e.g. PhD, own business, teaching). This will involve inter alia: using current / previous role descriptions or PhD opportunities; contacting people in that industry (potentially alumni) through informational interviews to gather information on career paths, a typical day, career prospects, other roles within the industry. The student will also research the current state of the industry, future direction / developments, global issues, current key legislation. As a result, students will increase their awareness of ethical, legal and commercial issues / frameworks governing the industry/research/self-employed sector that they may wish to enter. They will summarise this in an assessed presentation in a “careers fair” type event to peers and Stage 1 and 2 on their course. This will be before the main exam period.

In addition, students will also reflect on their current skills and consider their own career development targets in the light of requirements for their chosen career and put together an action plan to enhance their personal skills and employability. Students will engage with at least 3 development opportunities. For example, those delivered by the careers service; a resourcefulness and emotional agility seminar; social networking for professionals; good practice in web-design; on-line courses or other professional or personal development (this could include workplace shadowing). While students will be guided towards events offered by the careers service and other supporting materials, they can be innovative in their approach to self-development.

Before the Semester 2 exam period, students will undertake a role play interview (15 minutes) which will be structured like part of a job interview for a graduate position. It will include a range of seen questions for which the students can have prepared answers. It will include a question on reflection of personal and professional development. This will help to consolidate learning of all the module learning outcomes – as well as building confidence in the student’s oral communication skills under this realistic employment scenario.


Teaching Methods

Please note that module leaders are reviewing the module teaching and assessment methods for Semester 2 modules, in light of the Covid-19 restrictions. There may also be a few further changes to Semester 1 modules. Final information will be available by the end of August 2020 in for Semester 1 modules and the end of October 2020 for Semester 2 modules.

Teaching Activities
Category Activity Number Length Student Hours Comment
Structured Guided LearningLecture materials61:006:00Online lecture materials via Canvas
Guided Independent StudyAssessment preparation and completion110:0010:00Preparation and delivery of presentation
Guided Independent StudyAssessment preparation and completion13:003:00Preparation of CV
Guided Independent StudyAssessment preparation and completion136:0036:00CPD and well-being
Guided Independent StudyDirected research and reading120:0020:00Career research and well-being
Structured Guided LearningStructured research and reading activities61:006:00Non synchronous module research and reading
Scheduled Learning And Teaching ActivitiesSmall group teaching51:005:00PiP small group teaching
Scheduled Learning And Teaching ActivitiesSmall group teaching61:006:00Synchronous online small group teaching
Guided Independent StudySkills practice14:004:00Interview practice
Guided Independent StudyReflective learning activity14:004:00Reflective log
Teaching Rationale And Relationship

The majority of the module is student led: researching into areas of interest or undertaking development opportunities. The first lecture launches the module with an overview and the tasks it entails, with further formal lectures outlining the assessment formats. There are compulsory tutorials for the student to update on their progress. There are optional drop-in sessions to offer further face to face individual support. The use of varied workshops and protected time to attend these increase the opportunity for students to tailor this protected time towards their individual interests and their future career aspirations.

Teaching methods are a blended approach incorporating some pre-recorded instructional/lecture-type material supported with follow-up present in person seminars to consolidate / enhance knowledge plus question and answer / drop-in sessions which are present in person and synchronous online, to enhance skills developed aligned with increased use of online meetings in the workplace.

Face-to-face sessions are valued however the module can work switching present in person to on-line synchronous if required due to Covid restrictions.

Assessment Methods

Please note that module leaders are reviewing the module teaching and assessment methods for Semester 2 modules, in light of the Covid-19 restrictions. There may also be a few further changes to Semester 1 modules. Final information will be available by the end of August 2020 in for Semester 1 modules and the end of October 2020 for Semester 2 modules.

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

Description Length Semester When Set Percentage Comment
Oral Presentation152M10010 minute presentation on your chosen case study (industry/research sector etc) + 5 mins questions. Plus one page summary
Zero Weighted Pass/Fail Assessments
Description When Set Comment
Reflective logMReflective log
Oral PresentationMMentoring of allocated student to rehearse presentation and interview
PortfolioMUpdated CV
Formative Assessments
Description Semester When Set Comment
Oral Examination1M10 min minute role play interview random questions from pre-prepared questions
Assessment Rationale And Relationship

The preparation for the assessment covers the learning outcomes. The presentation summarises the salient points and enables all students to enhance their knowledge of related sectors including other stages. The formative role play interview helps create an authentic scenario in which students will be assessed in the work place. It also gives students the opportunity to interview each other, again a useful confidence building experience, for which they will receive immediate personal feedback.

Reading Lists