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Using Professional Online Presences To Enhance Computing Student Employability

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Using Professional Online Presences To Enhance Computing Student Employability

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This presentation, from the HEA STEM Conference 2013, reports on work undertaken at Birmingham City University, showing how students can become more employable by creating professional presences to represent themselves in the online world.

This presentation, from the HEA STEM Conference 2013, reports on work undertaken at Birmingham City University, showing how students can become more employable by creating professional presences to represent themselves in the online world.

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Using Professional Online Presences To Enhance Computing Student Employability

  1. 1. Using Professional Online Presences To Enhance Computing Student Employability Thomas Lancaster
  2. 2. “So What?” Employability
  3. 3. Minimal Expectations For A Job Career? Good Degree Classification? Well-Prepared Application Form? Solid Performance During Job Selection Process? University Provided Support And Training? 3
  4. 4. More Advanced Expectations? Work Experience Assignments Simulating Industry Industrial Sandwich Year Placements Participation In Student Competitions Portfolio Of Work Freelance Experience Vendor Certifications Interest In Computing Outside The Classroom Experience With The Latest Technologies Participation Towards Open Source Projects Evidence Of Entrepreneurship Project Tailored Towards Employment 4
  5. 5. How Do Students Communicate This? http://www-05.ibm.com/employment/uk/graduate- programmes/apply/index.shtml 5
  6. 6. Not Enough (For Computing?) http://mashable.com/2011/10/23/how-recruiters-use-social-networks-to-screen-candidates-infographic 6
  7. 7. Application Forms? 7
  8. 8. Positive Online Presence
  9. 9. Students Need To… Be aware of how they are perceived online Take control of the information that is publicised about them Direct employers towards the view of them that they want them to have Claim ownership of the valuable social media properties associated with them Ensure that they are findable (to receive opportunities) Be required to develop themselves into a brand Develop a Professional (Online) Presence (=web + social media) 9
  10. 10. Computing Professionals Do This… http://www.tubblog.co.uk/ 10
  11. 11. Academics Do This… http://thomaslancaster.co.uk http://thomaslancaster.co.uk/blo g 11
  12. 12. Students Do This… http://www.ashleyksmith.com/ 12
  13. 13. And Also… http://www.adamtsmith.co.uk/ http://www.alaurentiu.com/ http://ayeshaprofessionalpresence.webnode.co 13 m/
  14. 14. Or They Use Third Party Services… http://www.linkedin.com/in/rizhwan http://portfolio.bcu.ac.uk/user/view.php?id=59 163 14
  15. 15. Teaching Professional Presences
  16. 16. Professional Practice UG2 2nd year module (taken over a full academic year on BSc Computer Science and BSc Business Information Technology) 15 credits 72 students registered (5 teaching groups) 26 weeks – 90 minutes per week Part employability + Part research/project skills Data collected relates to the 2011-2012 academic year 16
  17. 17. Employability Content Week Topic Week Topic 1 Online Professional 5 Personal Development Representation Planning 2 The Placement Selection 6 Assessment Centre Process Simulation 3 CV Writing And Application 7 Time Management And Forms Planning 4 Aptitude Tests 8 Interview Techniques 17
  18. 18. Assignment Requirements Create a Professional Online Presence (one site of your choice) Should support placement and job applications (encourage real life use) Should show creativity (answer “so what?”) Include: Appropriate information CV 2 year Personal Development Plan 18
  19. 19. The Students See… 19
  20. 20. What Do Students Think?
  21. 21. Before Teaching… (59 responses) “i think my skills are better and i think that i can offer more than any other candidate for a job.” “Very aware of privacy and security concerns, try to avoid identifying myself on many websites or other internet analogues (USENET, etc) Tend to identify more with non-identifying username for privacy.” “Most the efforts I have made to become more „employable‟ have come from activities outside of university that have no link to it.” “I've managed to get a placement at a Digital Marketing company in Birmingham Science Park whilst studying at BCU.” 21
  22. 22. Post Teaching… (39 responses) “I feel I am now professionally minded and have more a professinal online presence than the last time I took the questionnaire.” How employable do you feel you are right now? 70% 64.10% 60% 50% 40% 30% 23.08% 20% 7.69% 5.13% 10% 0.00% 0% 22
  23. 23. Would You Like To Take A Placement Year? 90% 79.66% 80% 70% 66.67% 60% 50% 40% 33.33% 30% 20.34% 20% 10% 0% Yes No Pre Teaching Post Teaching 23
  24. 24. How Many Placement Applications Have You Made? 100% 94.92% 90% 80% 70% 60% 50% 46.15% 40% 28.21% 30% 20% 15.38% 10% 7.69% 5.08% 2.56% 0.00% 0.00% 0.00% 0% 0 1-3 4-6 7-9 10+ Pre Teaching Post Teaching 24
  25. 25. Which Professional Presence Elements Do You Have? 80% 74.36% 71.19% 70% 66.67% 60% 50% 41.03% 40% 30% 20% 15.25% 10% 6.78% 0% Facebook LinkedIn Website Pre Teaching Post Teaching 25
  26. 26. How Professional Would People Perceive You To Be After Searching For You On The Internet? 60% 54.24% 48.72% 50% 40% 30.77% 30% 20% 16.95% 13.56% 10.17% 10.26% 10.26% 10% 5.08% 0.00% 0% very unprofessional neither professional very professional unprofessional unprofessional nor professional Pre Teaching Post Teaching 26
  27. 27. What Do We Think?
  28. 28. Key Challenges Convincing students to own their web site (students who did generally got higher marks) Encouraging “willingness to relocate” for home students for placements Encouraging International students to participate with the entire placements and employability agenda Convincing students to leave their Professional Presences available online after assessments Providing opportunities for students to continue to develop their Professional Presences Integrating Professional Presences into more 28 courses and beyond the Computing discipline
  29. 29. Further Resources
  30. 30. Workshop Resources HEA Computing 2012 Workshop “Enhancing The Employability Of Computing Students Through An Online Professional Presence” http://www.bcu.ac.uk/tee/events/previous- events/employability-workshop Contains copies of talks and set of teaching materials 30
  31. 31. Upcoming Workshop HEA Computing 2013 Workshop “Professional Presences for Academics” http://www.heacademy.ac.uk/events/detail/2013/9 -May-Birmingham-STEM Thursday 9 May 2013 Birmingham City University 31
  32. 32. Any Questions?

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