AP2AE35-Career Planning and Professional Practice for BSc Environmental Management

Module Provider: School of Agriculture, Policy and Development
Number of credits: 10 [5 ECTS credits]
Level:5
Terms in which taught: Autumn / Spring / Summer module
Pre-requisites:
Non-modular pre-requisites:
Co-requisites:
Modules excluded:
Placement opportunity: Micro placement
Current from: 2019/0

Module Convenor: Ms Rebecca Jerrome

Email: r.m.jerrome@reading.ac.uk

Type of module:

Summary module description:

The module has two main aims: 

(1) To provide an opportunity for students to extend the knowledge gained in the first year of the programme; understand the context in which relevant organisations operate and gain experience of the types of activity and professional roles  a work place environment. (2) To encourage students to think about, and plan more systematically for, their future careers. This module component aims to provide students with the opportunity to develop self-awareness in the context of career decision making, knowledge of the career opportunities that are available to them, and the skills to make effective applications . It also encourages engagement with the University’s Career Centre.


Aims:

The module has two main aims: 

(1) To provide an opportunity for students to extend the knowledge gained in the first year of the programme; understand the context in which environmental management organisations operate and gain experience of the types of activity and professional roles in environmental management. (2) To encourage students to think about, and plan more systematically for, their future careers. This takes place late in the the Spring Term of year 1. This module component aims to provide students with the opportunity to develop self-awareness in the context of career decision making, knowledge of the career opportunities that are available to them, and the skills to make effective applications.


Assessable learning outcomes:

(1) Students should be able to:



- Organise and undertake a mini work-placement in a relevant organisation



- Critically reflect on the personal and professional learning opportunities afforded to them during the work-placement



 (2) Through career planning:

• identify, assess and articulate their skills, interests, values and personality traits in the context of career decision making. 

• develop careers information retrieval, research and decision making skills, using a variety of sources including the Internet. 

• be able to write an effective application (a CV and covering letter) informed by their understanding of the recruitment and selection processes.


Additional outcomes:

The module also aims to encourage the development of the following skills:

• Working with other people 

• An understanding of the requirements of the workplace 

Students will also develop:

• Business awareness through understanding broad trends in the graduate labour market and the personal attributes and achievements that employers require;

• IT and information handling skills by using the Internet; 

• Personal Development Planning (PDP) abilities through the reflective exercises and forward-looking nature of career planning, which will significantly contribute to PDP activities. 


Outline content:

(1) WPE: The module is designed to give the students some work placement experience in a field of their choice, which may help in application for employment or further study. You will select a work placement in consultation with the module convenor and the Careers Advisor. It should be with a recognised organisation appropriate to your specialisation and be able to provide you with some opportunity for independent problem solving and team working. Although the area of work undertaken on the placement should be related to your degree, the day to day content will be set by the employer. The placement must be approved, in advance of commencement, by the Module Convenor. Except in agreed exceptions, it will not be possible to approve placements retrospectively. The placement must be for a minimum of 35 hours in total, either in a single block or one day a week, between the end of the Part 1 examinations and the end of the Easter Vacation of Part 2.  Longer placements are allowed/encouraged but are not a necessity for completion of the module. The assessment part of the module will help students to reflect on what they have achieved and experienced.

(2) This module components consists of three elements that relate to the stages in effective career planning, self-awareness (Finding Your Profile), opportunity awareness and decision making (Finding the Fit), and transition skills (Effective Applications). 



 




  1. Work placements must amount to the equivalent of one week of work (minimum 35 hours). Other arrangements for accrual of time may be discussed with and approved in advance by the module convenor on a case by case basis (i.e. weekly day/part day sessions over a period of time). Longer summer placements are allowed/encouraged but are not a necessity for completion of the module.

  2. All placements must be within a company or organisation explicitly connected with the environment i.e. management, consultancy or conservation or as agreed with the module convenor.

  3. Placements must be undertaken between the end of the Part 1 examinations and the end of the Easter Vacation of Part 2.

  4. All placements must be discussed with and approved by the University in advance of the placement commencement date. Placements will not be approved retrospectively. Placements which involve doing a job the student already does or has done in the past will not be approved – students are encouraged to seek new opportunities.

  5. All placement providers must satisfy health and safety requirements, hold relevant insurance and be willing to provide evidence of student attendance along with a basic testimonial of the student’s performance. Health and Safety documentation and a Work Placement Agreement must be completed and signed off before the placement can commence.

  6. In order for placements to be recognised within this module, it is the responsibility of the student to have all required paperwork completed and submitted to the module convenor prior to commencing their placement, failure to do so will result in penalty in the final module mark, failure of the module or if there is time, another placement being fulfilled.

  7. Students will be expected to attend a session in the Spring Term of Part 2 to feedback on their experience to staff and Part 1 students. 



 


Brief description of teaching and learning methods:

Each of the three elements in effective career planning are introduced in lecture sessions in the Spring Term of Part 1, supplemented by practical exercises and self directed learning using on-line materials available on the Internet at: http://www.rdg.ac.uk/Careers/cms.



Sessions will include:



Concepts of experiential, life-long learning and professional development



Finding and securing placements



Reflective thinking and writing in the context of self-development



These will help students to prepare for placement(s) and develop the skills needed for effective self-evaluation and reflection during and after the placement.

Work based learning during a mini work placement:

A micro work-placement will be independently organised and undertaken by the student. Students are encouraged to apply for a challenging placement aligned to their personal career interests which will afford them quality development opportunities. This placement must be approved by the University and all associated paperwork must be completed BEFORE any placement commences



Contact hours per term will be dependent upon the timing of the student’s individual placement. Accordingly, hours below are indicative only.


Contact hours:
  Autumn Spring Summer
Lectures 10
Work-based learning 35
Guided independent study: 5 45 5
       
Total hours by term 5 55 40
       
Total hours for module 100

Summative Assessment Methods:
Method Percentage
Portfolio 100

Summative assessment- Examinations:

Summative assessment- Coursework and in-class tests:

(1) WPE:




  • a 1000 word reflective account critically exploring the work based learning experience (80%).

  • An experiential learning log completed during the WPE (20%)



 (2) Career planning portfolio (Pass/fail)

 You are required to submit an e-portfolio demonstrating your professional practice via the following documentation:




  • Action Plan

  • Mind-map of skills

  • A LinkedIn profile

  • Reflection of your attendance at four careers events (including Careers Fair)

  • A testimonial from your employer.

  • A CV that includes your workplace experience



All of the above must be included in order to obtain a pass mark.



The submission for the WPE assignment and the portfolio is  the second week of the Summer Term of Part 2.


Formative assessment methods:

Students will have the opportunity to discuss their professional practice and understanding during lecture sessions. Students will also get peer and staff feedback on their CV.


Penalties for late submission:
The Module Convener will apply the following penalties for work submitted late:

  • where the piece of work is submitted after the original deadline (or any formally agreed extension to the deadline): 10% of the total marks available for that piece of work will be deducted from the mark for each working day[1] (or part thereof) following the deadline up to a total of five working days;
  • where the piece of work is submitted more than five working days after the original deadline (or any formally agreed extension to the deadline): a mark of zero will be recorded.

  • The University policy statement on penalties for late submission can be found at: http://www.reading.ac.uk/web/FILES/qualitysupport/penaltiesforlatesubmission.pdf
    You are strongly advised to ensure that coursework is submitted by the relevant deadline. You should note that it is advisable to submit work in an unfinished state rather than to fail to submit any work.

    Assessment requirements for a pass:

    A mark of 40% overall. Students must also achieve a Pass in the portfolio element.


    Reassessment arrangements:
    By submission of coursework for failed element.

    Additional Costs (specified where applicable):


    1. Specialist clothing, footwear or headgear: Students will need to provide any necessary clothing, footwear or PPE if undertaking a practical based placement, unless these are provided by the employer.

    2. Travel, accommodation and subsistence: Students will have to pay for any such costs associated with undertaking their placement.


    Last updated: 8 April 2019

    THE INFORMATION CONTAINED IN THIS MODULE DESCRIPTION DOES NOT FORM ANY PART OF A STUDENT'S CONTRACT.

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