The challenges of reflection: students learning from work placements

Karen Smith, Sue Clegg, Liz Lawrence, Malcolm Todd

    Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

    57 Citations (Scopus)


    The importance of employability in higher education and increasing numbers of students working while studying led leaders on a social science degree to introduce work experience modules. This paper reports on an in‐depth case study based on the analysis of staff and student interviews, the students’ reflective assignments, and a focus group session with students a year after completing the module. The themes of reflection and linkages are discussed. Linking theory to practice was difficult, but when achieved, students spoke of new ways of seeing the social sciences. The major challenge was learning to be reflective about themselves as employees, while reflecting on the workplace. The paper concludes by emphasising the value of this mode of study for producing deep learning.
    Original languageEnglish
    Pages (from-to)131-141
    JournalInnovations in Education and Teaching International
    Issue number2
    Publication statusPublished - 2007


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