Examples of best practice
Many universities provide career services material during one-on-one student appointments or through group activities such as lunchtime workshops. With a limited number of Career Advisers and a very large student population, this model alone is unable to meet the needs of UniSA students.
The Career Services team has addressed this issue through the development of an innovative suite of resources and activities that use new technologies and interactive workshops to engage and inform students about career management strategies across key stages of their degree.
The Career Management Skills (CMS) package is delivered as a part of a program's curriculum, not as an 'add-on'. Locating it within the program brings credibility to the content, enables it to be made relevant to the professional context of the program, and addresses a much greater number of students than is possible through individual or small group contact outside the program. The Careers Services team leader has overseen the implementation of the CMS strategy, and coordinated the reporting and development of evaluation mechanisms to measure the impact of the CMS approach.
Examples of best practice include:
Business and Society BUSS1057
This is a first year core course for all programs within the Division of Business, delivered to over 600 students. In designing this new course, it was considered imperative by the Course Coordinators that students be introduced to career development theory and practice as an assessable component of this course.
As a consequence, career-planning workbooks, lectures (video-recorded for external students), action plan templates for developing individual career planning strategies and assessment tasks were developed and delivered by UniSA Career Advisers. A key component included briefing all tutors on the purpose and use of student learning materials.
Students reported on outcomes such as having a much clearer idea about their career destination, having more confidence about their capabilities and employment prospects, and in some instances having changed their career direction.
Bachelor of Psychological Science
The Career Services team was approached by the Course Coordinator of the Experiential Learning Placement course BEHL3020. The curriculum required a learning outcome whereby students were able to competently prepare professional job application documentation. In particular the requirement was to teach students how to address key selection criteria. Students from this cohort are regularly required to do this when seeking professional employment in their discipline.
A 2.5 hour workshop was delivered, covering all aspects of resume preparation, how to respond to selection criteria and writing application cover letters. Students' responses to a given set of selection criteria, relevant to their potential fields of employment, were assessed as a part of this course.
Bachelor of Communication (Media and Culture)
In conjunction with Program Director for Bachelor of Communication (Media and Culture), Careers Services presented a workshop to commencing students in this program in the week prior to the commencement of the academic year. The workshop's aim was to heighten students understanding of what employers are seeking in the graduates they recruit. Additionally this workshop assisted students to make informed choices about their submajor and electives. It sought to link those attributes being sought by employers with the various courses included in the program.
As a result of this workshop the Program Director was able to articulate how the various courses in the program are linked to the attributes being sought by employers. For students, they were in a better position to make informed choices about their submajor and electives and gain insight into the attributes sought by employers.
Graduate Certificate in Engineering
In response to a request from the School of Electrical and Information Engineering to prepare students for a compulsory industry placement, UniSA Career Advisers designed, developed and implemented a series of workshops covering resume writing, cover letters, Australian workplace culture, and the roles and responsibilities of students whilst on work placement. A key outcome of this initiative was that academic staff found this process of arranging industry placements considerably easier.
For more information on updating your existing course material with
career development learning, please contact the
LTU Careers Adviser on your campus.