Employability is a key agenda for the University, with different initiatives on-going across the institution.
The Buxton Faculty has developed at set of ‘graduate attributes’ embedded into programmes.
Buxton focus on embedding a wide-range of opportunities for paid work into the curriculum (spa, fine dining restaurant, events with entertainment and catering, outdoor recreation centre, sports therapy clinic).
Lots of local business partners, or ‘learning labs’.
Lecturing/academic/research staff with industry experience.
Library is part of the Institute for Learning Enhancement and Innovation.
Subject Librarians linked to subject areas/Schools.
The Careers and Employment Service and Technology Enhanced Learning are key partners
Information Literacy framework has been in existence since 2013. Working on a digital literacy framework. Looking for synergies.
As Buxton is smaller, more opportunities to liaise with/work with other support professionals.
Work with Careers and Employment Service: Induction is delivered as a team effort.
Provide roaming support together.
Plan and deliver workshops and classes together.
Represent all of LEI, not just Library, at programme committee and School quality meetings.
Share away days and professional development opportunities.
Operate in a shared space.
Library also participates in events and developed sessions with the Students’ Union and Wellbeing Service.
The International Student Centre and Placement Office support many of the students in the Faculty.
They are increasingly a key part of the curriculum, with responsibility for intercultural and global graduate skills, promoting and developing international and local opportunities and for organising extra-curricula classes, groups and events which students use as evidence for their personal development portfolio.
Is there cross-over between what we do, the skills and literacies we promote and the goals we are trying to achieve?
Do we understand each others’ priorities and responsibilities?
What could we achieve if we work together?
Meetings from Summer 2013 to discuss our areas of work, our priorities, current initiatives and ideas for a team project.
Started to explore skills sets, literacies and attributes that we promote, use as terms of reference and embed.
Both had heard of the term ‘outduction’ to describe workshops, activities and interventions designed to help those about to graduate to prepare for the real world.
An outduction event seemed like the perfect opportunity to work together to improve the student experience.
The event was a series of sessions and workshops held over a two week period in March.
Aimed at all students about to graduate: 2nd year Foundations, 3rd years, Postgraduates.
Named the event ‘Finalists’ Fortnight’.
The website was viewed 180 times during the fortnight and attendance was slightly above average for a voluntary library event.
Think global, collaborate local: cross-team working to develop students’ employability skills
Think global, collaborate local:
Cross-team working to develop students’ employability
Jonathan White and Mikaela Balder
Institute for Learning Enhancement
The Buxton context
• Hospitality, Tourism, Countryside, Outdoor
recreation and Sports programmes.
• Small campus, small student numbers, big
• International and culturally varied.
• Partnerships with Colleges and Universities
around the World.
• Erasmus and student exchange programme.
• International work placements.
• Lots of opportunities for cultural exchange!
The home of Real World Learning
• Employability, employability and employability!
• Buxton ‘graduate attributes’ embedded into
• Focus on embedding a wide-range of
opportunities for paid work into the curriculum.
• ‘Learning labs’.
• Highly valued industry experience.
Providing professional support
• The Institute for Learning Enhancement and
• Key support partners are also part of LEI.
• LEI leading on the University’s Information
Literacy framework and approaches to
• Synergies between teams.
• Small campus, big opportunities.
Cross-support team working at Buxton
Work with the Careers and Employment
• Workshops and classes
• We represent all of LEI
• Shared professional development
• Operate in a shared space.
What about the other big support services?
• International Student Centre and Placement Office.
• They are a key curriculum element.
• Library did little team working with these areas.
• We considered how we could engage with them…
Do global graduates need to be information
The world as a workplace http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Y4tKZ1hUOoU
“Intercultural skills are competencies which people gain from any kind of
international experience/whenever you deal with people from other cultures in an
open way, either in your own country or abroad” (Barker et al. cited in Sovic and
Open to new ideas*
Works effectively in diverse teams
Demonstrates respect for other
Seeks opportunities for
Listens/observes to deepen
Strong leadership skills
Foreign language skills
Adapts to change without changing
their own values and virtues
Thinks outside of the box!*
Attributes of the ‘global graduate’
Those with * link to the attributes of an information literate person
What we did
• Meetings from Summer 2013 onwards.
• Explored skill sets, literacies and attributes that we deliver/promote.
• Lots of cross-over identified.
• All focussed on developing students to be critical/analytical
thinkers, responsible, professional, open-minded and informed.
Working on an ‘outduction’ event
• Aimed to improve the student experience.
• Sessions and workshops held over a two week period in March.
• Aimed at all students about to graduate.
• Promoted as ‘Finalists’ Fortnight’
‘Outduction’ = a series of sessions/interventions aimed at those about
to graduate. Used to allow students to turn academic/University skills
into skills for living, work and lifelong learning.
Cross-team working with the library: the
• Promotion of international events through the library.
• Academic writing study skills referrals.
• “International students’ ability to respond to writing requirements becomes a
paramount importance to their academic success” (Gorska in Blythman and
Sovic, 2013) – obvious link to research skills and information literacy.
• It is important to work together on issues relating to successful report/essay
writing and with regards to international students adopting the UK teaching
and learning methods. The library can assist with all of the above.
Outcomes and future work
• Developing a version of the information literacy framework mapped
to University of Derby Buxton graduate skills and attributes.
• Working with the Culinary Arts/Management subject areas on
embedding information literacy.
• Working together has so many benefits – we will definitely do it
• To learn from this year’s Finalist’s Fortnight event and turn it into an
Top tips for cross-team working
1. Don’t wait for ‘permission’
2. Open mind, clear objectives
3. Find informal and ‘neutral’ spaces
4. Listen to, understand and support each others’ priorities
5. Share the idea… and the results
Institute for Learning Enhancement & Innovation
Thank you for listening, any questions?
Jonathan White, Subject Librarian (University of Derby Buxton)
Mikaela Balder, International Student Advisor (University of Derby Buxton)