Watch out to for a DLF project that will gather case studies, principles and practical pointers for use of the Deakin portfolio tool to support WIL outcomes. Which tool Deakin will adopt is yet to be announced. Generally, portfolios support students to reflect on progress over time (skills development, knowledges, career planning) and transitioning seamlessly into professional CPD practices. At course level, they enable mapping of where and how ULOs, CLOs, GLOS are developed over a course, as well as Assurance of Learning, achievement of competencies and of professional standards. Read about a course level system for portfolio use, including to support WIL, developed by Ron Knevel at La Trobe (See More than an eportfolio: Horizontal and vertical implementation of PebblePad in the curriculum )
Within and beyond our own community, the Australian Collaborative Education Network (ACEN) National WIL Strategy has been a focal point for WIL in Australia. ACEN hosted a recent national forum in which many universities indicated their preferences for a refresh of the strategy in 2020. Sector-wide priorities for WIL remain consistent or indeed amplified by COVID-19, such as: organisational leadership and management structures which support WIL; institutional coherence on quality WIL practice; managing risk; sharing of quality practice, building a ‘culture of WIL’ and a ‘WIL Learning Community’; enhancing and expanding industry engagement and partnerships; and employability and graduate outcomes in our ever-changing world.
Deakin’s participation in the forum involved reflecting on our own institutional priorities. The DVCE, Professor Liz Johnson, has flagged developing career awareness for graduates who will experience multiple careers, may not work in their target profession as graduates and a need for further research to provide insight into building resilience. Other foci are sustainability and inclusivity, employability, including what online placements, projects, or other models’ employers can offer and extending partnerships to support WIL. The work of Friederika Kaidor and Harsh Suri, noted above, has help to progress our priority of supporting and developing online and virtual WIL.
ACEN is facilitating Global Conversations about questions resulting from COVID-19. A joint statement of principles for the higher education sector response to COVID-19 has been released. ACEN’s Critical Conversations are facilitating online conversations for disciplines about current issues for WIL practitioners, sharing of strategic responses and access to support. The next event in this series looks at ‘Project-Based WIL: Platforms, Practices and Pedagogy’ at which discipline groups will discuss innovative models of project-based WIL being planned for the second half of 2020 and beyond.
Deakin RMIT and ACEN are planning a WIL virtual summit, to be held over the 27– 28th October, 2020. A focus on creating the future with WIL, in a full program of roundtables showcases and papers, is complemented by opportunities for virtual networking.
We hope to see you there!