Embedding 21st century employability into assessment and feedback practice through a student-staff partnership

Nousek-Mcgregor, A. , Veitch, N. , Zainudden, D. A. and Broom, M. (2019) Embedding 21st century employability into assessment and feedback practice through a student-staff partnership. Change Agents Network, Milton Keynes, UK, 29-30 May 2019.

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Although commonly thought to be only a measure of academic performance, assessments can also provide students with an opportunity to apply skills and knowledge acquired at university into written literacies that prepare them for the transition into prospective careers. Within a Level 2 School of Life Sciences course, students struggled to engage with standalone timetabled careers-related sessions, yet they showed enthusiasm when employability was embedded into assessments. A staff-student partnership project has been initiated to explore these issues, with the overall aim of understanding how to effectively embed employability skills into assessment and feedback, which supports the theme of supporting students to position themselves for the future. Through student-run focus groups, this project investigated the reasons for low student engagement with the timetabled employability session and used student views to develop digital initiatives that could be applied to assessment and feedback practice with an emphasis on developing 21st-century competencies. These initiatives were then implemented as pre-session self-directed activities, which helped students link course feedback with employment skills and future career planning, followed by a newly developed in-class reflective feedback session that allowed students time to consider what skills they have developed and make links with future careers. Project evaluation was conducted using a repeated-measures quantitative survey of students involved. Embedding employability skills into the curriculum is a challenge across HE. This project highlights one approach, working with students and staff as collaborators (another conference theme), that demonstrates good practice around embedding these skills into assessment and feedback. This, in turn, would make feedback more meaningful and valued by students to a greater extent. In addition, because the questions and approaches were designed in partnership with former students from the course, this project possesses the unique ability to deliver a genuine student voice both on employability concerns and the role of assessment.

Item Type:Conference or Workshop Item
Glasgow Author(s) Enlighten ID:Mcgregor, Dr Anna and Broom, Miss Miranda and Zainudden, Mr Dzachary Adnan and Veitch, Dr Nicola
Authors: Nousek-Mcgregor, A., Veitch, N., Zainudden, D. A., and Broom, M.
College/School:College of Medical Veterinary and Life Sciences > School of Life Sciences
College of Medical Veterinary and Life Sciences > School of Infection & Immunity

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