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Work Based Learning: a critical challenge to the subject discipline structures and practices of higher education

Work Based Learning: a critical challenge to the subject discipline structures and practices of... PurposeThe article shows how transdisciplinarity is woven into the key curriculum components of individually negotiated WBL programmes and also seeks to focus upon the performative value of knowledge in the work context. Design/methodology/approachThis article draws upon work-based learning academic literature and the authors 22 years operational experience of work-based learning (WBL) at Middlesex University (Garnett, Costley and Workman, 2009). FindingsThe article suggests that while University level WBL can enhance the performance of organizations and individuals it is also inherently challenging and challenged by the hegemony of subject disciplines and disciplinary based university structures. WBL is concerned with knowledge which is often unsystematic, socially constructed and is action focused in order to achieve outcomes of significance to work. This contests the supremacy of the role of the University in curriculum design, delivery and validation of knowledge and means that work based knowledge is often seen as trans disciplinary rather than conforming to traditional subject disciplines (Boud and Solomon, 2001). Research limitations/implicationsCentral to the distinctive nature of University WBL programmes is the role of the external organization as a partner with the University and the individual learner in the planning of learning activities which are intended to have significance for the workplace. For individual knowledge to become organizational knowledge, and thus fully contribute to the intellectual capital of the organization, it must be shared and accepted by others. It follows that a key concern for organizations must be the facilitation of the recognition of knowledge and this goes beyond using a transdisciplinary lens when guiding and assessing the work of individual higher education students. Practical implicationsThe paper has practical implications for the design and facilitation of work based learning programmes at higher education level.Originality/valueProvides an informed and sustained examination of the concept of work based learning and knowledge. http://www.deepdyve.com/assets/images/DeepDyve-Logo-lg.png Higher Education, Skills and Work-based Learning Emerald Publishing

Work Based Learning: a critical challenge to the subject discipline structures and practices of higher education

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Publisher
Emerald Publishing
Copyright
Copyright © Emerald Group Publishing Limited
ISSN
2042-3896
DOI
10.1108/HESWBL-04-2016-0023
Publisher site
See Article on Publisher Site

Abstract

PurposeThe article shows how transdisciplinarity is woven into the key curriculum components of individually negotiated WBL programmes and also seeks to focus upon the performative value of knowledge in the work context. Design/methodology/approachThis article draws upon work-based learning academic literature and the authors 22 years operational experience of work-based learning (WBL) at Middlesex University (Garnett, Costley and Workman, 2009). FindingsThe article suggests that while University level WBL can enhance the performance of organizations and individuals it is also inherently challenging and challenged by the hegemony of subject disciplines and disciplinary based university structures. WBL is concerned with knowledge which is often unsystematic, socially constructed and is action focused in order to achieve outcomes of significance to work. This contests the supremacy of the role of the University in curriculum design, delivery and validation of knowledge and means that work based knowledge is often seen as trans disciplinary rather than conforming to traditional subject disciplines (Boud and Solomon, 2001). Research limitations/implicationsCentral to the distinctive nature of University WBL programmes is the role of the external organization as a partner with the University and the individual learner in the planning of learning activities which are intended to have significance for the workplace. For individual knowledge to become organizational knowledge, and thus fully contribute to the intellectual capital of the organization, it must be shared and accepted by others. It follows that a key concern for organizations must be the facilitation of the recognition of knowledge and this goes beyond using a transdisciplinary lens when guiding and assessing the work of individual higher education students. Practical implicationsThe paper has practical implications for the design and facilitation of work based learning programmes at higher education level.Originality/valueProvides an informed and sustained examination of the concept of work based learning and knowledge.

Journal

Higher Education, Skills and Work-based LearningEmerald Publishing

Published: Aug 8, 2016

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