Authentic, modularised learning to help students navigate their careers

By Dr Emily Chandler, Dr Laura Lecce, Courtney Wright and Adrianne Harris

Approaches to career management

UNSW Online’s Masters of Management (MMGT) is geared toward non-Business undergraduates wishing to transition their career into a business corporate direction. According to Nick Wailes, Director of AGSM and Senior Deputy Dean (External Engagement) of UNSW Business School:

“It’s about more than obtaining that first job when they graduate. It’s about having the career management skills to continue exploring, discovering and deciding throughout their career lifecycle.”

Having both career development and work integrated learning components compulsory for all students is imperative to achieve this. Accordingly, Career Accelerator commenced building ZZBU6007 Career Navigator, a new career development course, in T1 2021.

Adrianne Harris, Career Coach in the Career Accelerator team, was the subject matter expert, along with Courtney Wright, Director of Career Accelerator & Student Engagement. Between March and August 2021, Adrianne and Courtney worked with Emily Chandler and Laura Lecce, Educational Solutions Developers from Educational Delivery Solutions, PVCESE to build ZZBU6007 from scratch. The team worked in sprints, meeting weekly to provide updates and plan next steps, coming away with action items to complete. To manage the project, the team established a Microsoft Teams site which housed project files, minutes and milestones, as well as being a place where team members could easily contact each other. With this organic and collaborative approach, Adrianne says, “the style of the team has been supportive! Easy is the word I would use to describe it.”

The team are excited for ZZBU6007’s first delivery in 2022. Courtney says the approach has been to “design a course that caters to a range of learning styles, but also offer an engaging student experience for everyone.”

Students are encouraged to use different mediums (such as photos, videos and writing) for reflective journaling. Additionally, ZZBU6007 delivers a Career Competency Reflection Survey at its start and end, so students can see how they have grown. The UNSW Media team also created bespoke video interviews with AGSM alumni reflecting on their careers and offering practical advice. The project team placed these throughout the course, encouraging students to visualise themselves post-university.

Activities feed directly into the assessments, but also give students skills and experience so that, in Laura’s words, “real-life practicality is in every element in the course.” Students conclude the course with a revitalised CV and LinkedIn, as well as a personalised pitch for networking and interviewing, and a clear plan for exploring, developing and achieving their career goals. Emily reflects, “These are going to come in extremely handy for their future careers as managers or management consultants.” The course is modularised, allowing resources and activities to be easily re-purposed into other courses or workshops. The course reminds Adrianne of “a pop-up book,” with a balance of carefully curated interactive elements that encourage creative career planning and reflection from multiple perspectives for students.

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Adrianne Harris

Adrianne Harris is a career education professional and coach with the AGSM @ UNSW. She holds qualifications in career development, information management, adult education, philosophy and English literature, and is also a UNSW FULT alumnus.


 

Courtney Wright

Courtney Wright is Director, Career Accelerator and Student Engagement at UNSW Business School. She is passionate about guiding tertiary students through the recruitment and career education process, technology driven solutions, and ensuring engaging and high value experiences for both students and industry partners. 

Dr Laura Lecce

Dr Laura Lecce is an Education Solutions Developer in Educational Delivery Solutions, PVCESE. She holds a PhD in Medical Science and has designed and delivered courses on women's health, science communication and education.


 

Dr Emily Chandler

Dr Emily Chandler is an Education Solutions Developer in Educational Delivery Solutions, PVCESE. She holds a PhD in Media, Film and Theatre and is an Associate Fellow of the Higher Education Academy. She is passionate about accessibility and equity.