Teaching Work Ready Skills Online

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Work Ready Skills and Planning Your Career is a new subject taught online to 110 second year undergraduate students across four faculties and five campuses. The subject content was published in the …

Work Ready Skills and Planning Your Career is a new subject taught online to 110 second year undergraduate students across four faculties and five campuses. The subject content was published in the LMS, with additional technologies being employed to further engage students, such as building a webfolio in PebblePad and the use of Blackboard Collaborate to hold fortnightly webinars. Students were encouraged to approach the subject as a self-paced one, with assessment tasks and webinars scheduled in such a way as to provide structure to enable completion of the learning activities on time. In this presentation, we will describe the design of the subject and reflect on the effectiveness of the teaching and learning activities and technologies used. We will also discuss the preliminary results of a pilot study measuring the Career Decision Self-Efficacy (CDSE) of students at the start and end of semester. Career Decision Self-Efficacy has been used in previous studies as a measure of the effectiveness of career development interventions.

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  • Many students had difficulty learning new approaches to topics they regarded as ‘familiar’ and ‘known’, eg how to write a resume, which was reflected in queries to lecturers, and in their performance in the relevant assessment task. These difficulties weren’t as apparent when they were completing the module on careers theory (probably new territory for most students). Suggests that within an online subject, topics involving some ‘reframing’ require particular emphasis on providing ways of querying, discussing and clarifying.

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  • 1. Teaching Work Ready Title of presentation Skills Online Jason of presenter Name Brown & Geoffrey Guilfoyle Career presenter Title of Development Centre 7 December 2012 School / Faculty / Division xx Month 201x @onejasonbrown #ctlc2012latrobe.edu.au/students/careers CRICOS Provider 00115M
  • 2. Overview of HUM2WRS
  • 3. Background• Invited by HUSS to develop 2 careers subjects (HUM2WRS & HUM3TRC) for the Work Ready BA• Specifications: • HUM2WRS to be taught online • Reflect on development of employability skills • Incorporate the use of ePortfoliosCAREER DEVELOPMENT CENTRE | La Trobe University 3
  • 4. Developing the subjectBASED ON CAREER DEVELOPMENT FRAMEWORKS• Self-Awareness; Opportunity Awareness; Decision Making; Transition Learning (DOTS) (Watts, 1977)• Australian Blueprint for Career Development (ABCD) (MCEEDYA, 2006)AIM TO PREPARE STUDENTS TO:• Reflect on development of employability skills• Understand how employers recruit & select staff• Participate in career planning activitiesCAREER DEVELOPMENT CENTRE | La Trobe University 4
  • 5. The DesignSELF-PACED ONLINE SUBJECT• All about the student, so makes sense to be self-paced• Generic content – evidence-based information; frameworks & theoriesTEACHING & LEARNING ACTIVITIES• All linked to assessment tasks• Analysis of employability skills; LinkedIn profile; building new networks; informational interview; collecting labour market informationASSESSMENT TASKS• Authentic tasks – job application; job interview; career portfolioCAREER DEVELOPMENT CENTRE | La Trobe University 5
  • 6. The DesignLEARNING MANAGEMENT SYSTEM• 8 topics (to break the link from traditional week structure)• LMS as a resource space – all activities, readings, videos, podcasts, webinars, & assessment tasks accessible from the LMS• All content set up and accessible from 1 week prior to start of semesterINDUCTION WORKSHOP• 2 hour workshop held at Bundoora and repeated as webinar• Introduced students to staff, structure of subject, expectations, etcCAREER DEVELOPMENT CENTRE | La Trobe University 6
  • 7. The DesignSUPPORTING STUDENTS• Assessment tasks scheduled to keep students on track• Webinars (using Blackboard Collaborate) used to answer questions, explore concepts in more detail, communicate requirements of assessments• Discussion boards & weekly announcements• Opportunities for feedback through formative assessmentCAREER DEVELOPMENT CENTRE | La Trobe University 7
  • 8. The Students Campus Enrolment Faculty Students Albury-Wodonga 10 FBEL 44 Bendigo 35 HUSS 27 Melbourne 55 FHS 21 Mildura 3 FSTE 18 Shepparton 7CAREER DEVELOPMENT CENTRE | La Trobe University 8
  • 9. Reflections & Feedback
  • 10. Observations & Reflections • While most students completed the readings and tasks in line with ‘traditional’ semester timelines, some students did the work in ‘chunks’ • For some students, significant challenge - no single set textbook • Students using different methods to query, check expectations – Q & A forums, webinars, emails to lecturers • Importance of providing structured interaction using various channels – in future, provision of more regular webinars, more regular short quizzes. Balance between structure and flexibility. • Need to tighten Assessment tasks – written application task contained too many variables – difficult to manage onlineCAREER DEVELOPMENT CENTRE | La Trobe University 10
  • 11. Observations & Reflections • Many students had difficulty learning new approaches to topics they regarded as ‘familiar’ and ‘known’ • These difficulties weren’t as apparent when they were completing the module on careers theory • Suggests that within an online subject, topics involving some ‘reframing’ require particular emphasis on providing ways of querying, discussing and clarifyingCAREER DEVELOPMENT CENTRE | La Trobe University 11
  • 12. Student feedback - What was the best aspect of completing anonline subject? “The efficiency of it. I thoroughly enjoy and benefit from online subjects much more than face to face. It allows for students to work through at their own pace, and not be held back by other students” “Flexibility and also the exposure to the online/technology enhanced world of learning. The exposure to and use of tools such as webinars, LinkedIn, PebblePad – great tools which as a learner has allowed for the support, which I sometimes feel that I don’t get in traditional face to face classes”CAREER DEVELOPMENT CENTRE | La Trobe University 12
  • 13. Student feedback - What was the best aspect of completing anonline subject? “It is easy to fit the work around other classes and no travel is involved” “Accessibility to resources and lecturers has been fantastic. The format of week structures provides structure to the self paced learning” “The ability to work at my own pace and catch up on tutorial recordings when I couldn’t attend”CAREER DEVELOPMENT CENTRE | La Trobe University 13
  • 14. Student Feedback - What was the worst aspect of completing anonline subject?• Technical issues and difficulties – webinars, uploading video files, using Pebblepad• Maintaining motivation towards the end• General communication, support & feedback mechanismsCAREER DEVELOPMENT CENTRE | La Trobe University 14
  • 15. Student Feedback on HUM2WRS 2012 5 4 3 2 1 ScoreCAREER DEVELOPMENT CENTRE | La Trobe University 15
  • 16. Career Decision Self-Efficacy as a measure of effectiveness
  • 17. Pilot StudyBy completing HUM2WRS, students should be more confident in performing a range of career planning activities, such as:• Networking• Preparing job applications• Finding authoritative labour market information• Making career decisionsCAREER DEVELOPMENT CENTRE | La Trobe University 17
  • 18. Pilot StudyCareer Decision Self-Efficacy (Taylor & Betz, 1983)• “Measures an individual’s degree of belief that he/she can successfully complete tasks necessary to making career decisions”• Based on Bandura’s self-efficacy theoryCAREER DEVELOPMENT CENTRE | La Trobe University 18
  • 19. Pilot Study: The MeasureCareer Decision Self-Efficacy – Short form scale (CDSE-SF)(Betz & Klein, 1996; Betz, Hammond, & Multon, 2005)• 25 items – 5 subscales identified through factorial analysis• Scale has excellent psychometric properties – internal reliability coefficient alphas range from .93 - .97 for the total score across many studies• Some studies have failed to replicate the 5 factors (e.g., Creed, Patton & Watson, 2002), so it is recommended to use the total score only• Total score 3.5> indicates a willingness to approach the behaviour• Total score <3.0 indicates inadequate confidence to approach the behaviourCAREER DEVELOPMENT CENTRE | La Trobe University 19
  • 20. Pilot Study: Method• Students invited via email, LMS message and announcement in webinar• Questionnaire completed using an online survey instrument• Responses: Likert scale 1-5 (no confidence at all – complete confidence)• 13 students completed survey at start of semester (T1)• 13 students completed second administration of questionnaire at end of semester (T2)• 12/13 students appear to be the same based on demographic profile• Response rate 11.8%CAREER DEVELOPMENT CENTRE | La Trobe University 20
  • 21. Pilot Study: ResultsAnalyses of the data show a significant increase in the total score between T1 & T2Total score (sum of 25 items / 25)• T1: 3.13• T2: 3.87Comparison of means (ANOVA): Total score vs time (T1:T2)• F(1,22)= 10.021, p<0.01CAREER DEVELOPMENT CENTRE | La Trobe University 21
  • 22. CDSE: Mean responses @ T1 & T2 5 4 3 2 1 Q1 Q2 Q3 Q4 Q5 Q6 Q7 Q8 Q9 Q10 Q11 Q12 Q13 Q14 Q15 Q16 Q17 Q18 Q19 Q20 Q21 Q22 Q23 Q24 Q25 T1 T2CAREER DEVELOPMENT CENTRE | La Trobe University 22
  • 23. CDSE: Difference in mean scores T2-T1 1.5 1 0.5 0 Q1 Q2 Q3 Q4 Q5 Q6 Q7 Q8 Q9 Q10 Q11 Q12 Q13 Q14 Q15 Q16 Q17 Q18 Q19 Q20 Q21 Q22 Q23 Q24 Q25CAREER DEVELOPMENT CENTRE | La Trobe University 23
  • 24. Pilot Study - Discussion• Results indicate that the students are more confident in approaching a range of career decision behavioursCautions:• Low response rate• No control group used in the study• No guarantee that the same students completed the questionnaire at T1 & T2CAREER DEVELOPMENT CENTRE | La Trobe University 24
  • 25. Next steps• CDMSE-SF can be used as a career assessment tool for individuals• Incorporate into learning activities in 2013 -> increase sample size• Look at sampling comparison groups – those participating in short term career programs and a control groupCAREER DEVELOPMENT CENTRE | La Trobe University 25
  • 26. Summary• Overall, positive feedback from students• Pilot study demonstrates increases in confidence of students to approach career decision making behaviours• Some changes will be made to provide more scaffolding, but keep self-paced structure of the subject• Changes to assessment tasks to increase efficiency in marking and providing feedbackCAREER DEVELOPMENT CENTRE | La Trobe University 26
  • 27. Thank youQuestions?latrobe.edu.au/students/careers CRICOS Provider 00115M