Strengthening educational partnerships: An online preparation program for engineering partners

Franziska Trede, Reza Mahinroosta

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

2 Citations (Scopus)


One of the key goals of professional engineering entry courses is to prepare graduates for the world of work, foster professionalism and strengthen employability. Universities can best accomplish this with effective, reciprocal educational partnerships with industry that include professional development support for host supervisors based on shared educational values and goals. To this end, a purposeful, self-paced, online preparation program for host supervisors was developed for an innovative, practice-based engineering degree situated in regional Australia. Survey methodology before and after the completion of the online preparation program was used to explore host supervisors’ perceptions of its value and effectiveness as well as their views of what makes a good host supervisor. The results demonstrated that online preparation program was well received with supervision skills for cadet engineers the most informative of the five topics. Participant data provided evidence of host supervisors’ insights into the complexity of their supervision role beyond training and recruiting technically competent future engineers. The paper discusses participants’ keen interest in contributing to educating the next generation of engineers, their interests in purposeful, supervisor-centred professional development programs and concludes with implications for further research in this neglected yet so important aspect of engineering education.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)1569-1580
Number of pages12
JournalInternational Journal of Engineering Education
Issue number5
Publication statusPublished - 2018


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