Making it Work for Business: Compulsory work placement in undergraduate Business programs

Zelma Bone

    Research output: Book chapter/Published conference paperConference paperpeer-review


    AbstractThe focus of this paper is to present a case study where the incorporation of practice-based subjects, with work placement as core, has been implemented within undergraduate Business programs. The majority of Business programs in Australian universities encourage students to undertake work placement and internships as part of their course of study but few, if any, have these subjects as compulsory parts of the curriculum. Business employers have long recommended work placements to ensure graduates that are work ready (B-HERT 2002, Andrews & Higson 2008) and Mason et al. (2003) found structured work experience during a degree program had a highly positive influence on employability. It is unclear why formal workplace learning is not typically part of Business programs. Bines and Watson (1992) identified three models of workplace learning or practice education: the apprenticeship, the technocratic and the post-technocratic. Preliminary research shows that Business programs in Australia appear to be 'stuck' in the apprenticeship or technocratic models. This paper explores the development of three work placement subjects, which situate the student's learning and socialisation in their practice communities, as core subjects within the Business curricula at Charles Sturt University from 2012. The aim was to design subjects which largely reflect the post-technocratic ideals of developing through practice and reflection on practice. The filters and hurdles are identified as well as acknowledging the facilitators in getting these subjects to this stage of a curriculum renewal.
    Original languageEnglish
    Title of host publicationWACE 2012
    Subtitle of host publicationWhere East meets West and Theory meets Practice
    EditorsM. Hansford
    Place of PublicationTurkey
    Number of pages12
    Publication statusPublished - 2012
    EventWorld Association for Cooperative Education Conference (WACE) - Istanbul, Turkey, Turkey
    Duration: 20 Jun 201222 Jun 2012


    ConferenceWorld Association for Cooperative Education Conference (WACE)


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