Module: Work Placement Incorporating Personal Development Planning

Module details

  • Module code

  • Module leader

    Peter Morris / Rita Walsh / Christopher Brough
  • Module Level

  • Module credits

  • Min study time

    20 weeks
  • Teaching Period

    April - September

Module content

The purpose of this module is to support the development and recognition of career management skills through work placement.


Students will be given guidance over the production of a CV and personal statement, which will identify achievements to date, skills acquired, interests and career objectives. This process will begin with tutorials at level 4.

Guidance will be given by the sandwich placement tutor for the programme about appropriate contacts and advice on how to approach prospective employers, but it is the student's responsibility to secure their own placement positions.

Exceptionally, students may be allowed to undertake two different jobs within the 20-week period or to extend the work placement to more than 20 weeks by taking a year out of University. The University must be notified of all placements before 28th February each year. In the event that a student is unable to obtain the placement position of their choice the University may nominate an employer. Alternatively, another period of employment may be credited as a work placement if properly approved by the University.

A member of academic staff will be appointed as supervisor for the duration of the placement and regular contact will be maintained between the supervisor, the employer and the student. Students will be visited whilst on placement, either by the nominated supervisor or by another suitable person, nominated by the supervisor.

Only in exceptional circumstances will students not be visited and in this case a telephone interview may be substituted. On the occasion of the visit, the employer, together with the supervisor, will complete the confidential assessment of the student. Students will be expected to share their experiences on returning to University, with their peers and with the following year's cohort, by arrangement with the Programme Manager. A final tutorial with the programme placement tutor and the University careers adviser will establish the value of the placement and the need for further career planning.

The placement will be assessed as satisfactory or unsatisfactory by completion of all of the elements of the module as described below. The student's report must be received by the University before 31st August.

A full account of the procedures and assessments involved with the placement is given in the University document "20-Week Industrial Work Placement: Procedures, Guidelines and Responsibilities".

A copy of this will be given to each student at level 5 and it is also available on the University intranet site for this module

Module outcomes

To achieve credit for this module, students must be able to:

  1. Complete a CV and Personal Statement, apply for jobs in an appropriate way and present themselves for interview.
  2. Demonstrate appropriate work-related skills and capabilities.
  3. Write a descriptive report about their work in a specific organisation.
  4. Reflect upon and analyse their own performance in work.
  5. Plan potential career moves based on their academic and work experience.


Assessment Description Weighting
Coursework CV and personal statement
Coursework Employer’s report and recommendation
Coursework Learning diary
Coursework Report plus personal skill and performance record signed by the appropriate manager
Coursework Attend placement debrief and career planning session

Key texts

Students should be familiar with the content of at least one of the following:

  • Committee of Vice-Chancellors and Principals. (1997). Health and Safety Guidance for the Placement of HE Students.
  • Cottrell, S. (2003). Study Skills Handbook. Palgrave Macmillan.
  • Department for Education and Skills. (2002). Providing Work Placements for Disabled Students: A Good Practice Guide for Further and Higher Education Institutions. Department for Education and Skills.
  • Fanthome, C. (2004). Work Placements: A Survival Guide for Students. Palgrave Macmillan.
  • Smith, A. Gilby, J. (1999). Supervising Students on Industrial-Based Projects. Society for Research into Higher Education.