The proposal is to analyse and develop work experience as a European education and training strategy appropriate to the changing economic and social conditions of the 21st. century. Its context is the future and changing nature of work. Overarching questions concern the extent to which work experience can enable young people to understand and prepare for working life and the ways in which educational institutions and companies can work together creatively to deliver relevant learning outcomes.
Existing data, models and approaches would be reviewed, best practice identified and innovative models tested for transparency and transferability at a European level. The new models would derive from institutional projects to be analysed by the research team in the six partner states. The work of the project would include the development of common terminology and agreed quality criteria and approaches to evaluation. The project would have practical, theoretical and policy outcomes and benefits of European relevance.
University researchers from the six partner states would work collaboratively in a review of work experience as a vehicle for learning and on a study of current and future policy towards work experience in the 16-19 years age group. The other member states would be asked to join these exercises so as to build up a clear profile at European level. An important outcome of the research will be an analysis of those features of education business partnership which are conducive to (or inhibit) change.
The project work would develop a strong European research team broadened and strengthened by the involvement of researchers from the 10 other member states. Careful project management and co-ordination would be required and the workplan details bi-annual team meetings, regular communications and a clear set of milestones and deliverables.
By focusing on a particular age group, level and area of study (business studies), the research will involve a full examination of the aims, processes and outcomes of work experience in the light of changes in the labour market and trends in workplace requirements and organisation. The aim is to analyse and test innovative approaches (including applications of information technology) to both domestic and European work experience. The methodology will involve researchers, enterprises (SME as well as large) and leading edge educational and vocational institutions working together. The products will include transferable models of good and innovative practice.
There will be a particular concern with the improvement of core and transferable skills, attitudes towards lifelong learning and greater enterprise skills. There will therefore be a focus on the development of quality criteria and evaluation procedures for work experience which can be applied at a European level as well as at member state level.
The outcomes will be disseminated throughout the EU and the central and eastern European countries and a strategy for this is set out. A series of workshops for key-decision makers is also proposed.
Funding SchemeCSC - Cost-sharing contracts