Key Processes for the Performance of Work-Integrated Learning in HE: Focusing on Talents With a Winning-Foursome

Key Processes for the Performance of Work-Integrated Learning in HE: Focusing on Talents With a Winning-Foursome

Walter Nuninger (Université de Lille, France) and Jean-Marie Châtelet (Université de Lille, France)
DOI: 10.4018/978-1-7998-1238-8.ch005


In a changing business market due to state regulation, funding reductions, and generation evolution, HE providers target a high level of operational learning performance. Work Integrated Learning is a framework that complies with European Standards and Guidelines, leading to increased competences of the citizen all through life and career. But the consistency of the training offer with shareholders' projects is only ensured if a learning organization rigorously monitors the 5-step road map: an improvement cycle that nonetheless allows local adaptation when carrying out the training in the scope of Quality Assurance. Today, more than ever, the issue for excellence (sustainability, efficiency, welfare at work) requires the Pole of Expertise animation, which means training tutors (TIL). The winning-foursome is the new lever for innovation. The tremendous digital integration at all levels of the organization opens new dimensions to executive dashboards to support the change of paradigm between trainees and trainers, then questions training lifetime and leading model for transfer.
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The aim of this chapter is to present an up-to-date 5-step roadmap for the building of a sustainable training offer able to take into account the complex needs of the parties involved: first, the individuals with their personal life projects in a changing society that requires new talents, second, the states in their role of initiator and facilitator, using game-changing legislation, and finally, the Higher Education Institutions (HEIs) and companies that face their issues as profit centers, employers and talent suppliers. The core of this process is based on (Nuninger et al., 2016): a repository of skills and curriculum to clarify the shared learning goals between the previously mentioned shareholders, the chosen operational pedagogical means to enhance a creative Community of Practice (CoP) and resource prioritization with efficient IT integration into the operational processes. Today, the rapid change in the generations accessing university and the job market leads to a mix of personal wishes and professional culture (technical approaches whatever the field, set of skills including digital comfort, …) that should be managed for mutual benefits (Ollivier et al., 2007). In the framework of lifelong learning (LLL), the challenge can be summarized as providing the individuals with an effective learning environment for them to develop the increasing and sufficient skills for living autonomously lifelong, and therefore participate in overcoming the new society issues (Yang et al., 2015).

The authors at the University of Lille and their teams had developed this process while designing in 1992, then, for more than two decades, tested a model for a Continuous Vocational Training (CVT) leading to French Engineers in the field of production (namely, Chartered Engineers). The training was further expanded to apprenticeship (IVT) in 2004, leading with success to 488 graduates since 1995 (40% by IVT since 2007) despite variable flows (see in Figure 1). The main reasons are the evolving economic and regulation contexts: the merging of the Institute in 2002, then the 2009 crisis affected CVT when the authors were in charge, motivating the reinforcement of operating processes and tutors’ training (Nuninger & Châtelet, 2014) to share the culture due to the relocation plan of IVT in Lille in 2010. The consequences of the merging of three Universities of Lille in 2018 and the evolution of the recent labor legislation reform and vocational training (Law no. 2018-771 of September 5, 2018 for the freedom to choose one's professional future) are expected in 2020. But it has been a collective and shared project of Work Integrated Learning (WIL) between the university and companies, that has proved its effectiveness to requirements and operating efficiency in a dynamic context since 1992.

Figure 1.

Evolution of the flow of WIL graduates since 1996 (CVT) and 2007

(IVT, half group till 2009)

Today, a more precise roadmap is brought out, separated from the WIL operating process itself (see Appendix 1), supported within shared tools for guiding and learning (see Appendix 2). The proposal of Tutoring Integrated Learning (TIL, see in Appendix 3), to train tutors in the same way as learners, aims at facing the impact of the generation phenomenon in the group of learners, but also in the pedagogical team at the Pole of Training Realization (PTR) which is part of the Pole of Expertise (PoE) in the learning organization. The set of proposals fully supports the changes in state regulations for funding, aiming at inclusive sandwich courses (alternation) in the company fields. The trainees benefit from the choice of active pedagogy, experimenting during Formative Work Situation (FWS) for tailored skills and abilities. This prepares for their future personal professional style thanks to a virtuous experiential learning circle fostered through positive feedback (Stone & Heen, 2014), debriefing (Schein, 2013) and guiding (Paul, 2004). Thus, Tutoring Integrated Learning (TIL) introduced by Nuninger & Châtelet (2018a) sustains the continuous education of the trainer-tutor. It is a training process driven by a Formative Tutoring Work Situation (FTWS) that ensures the recognition of proficient tutors and the sharing of cultures.

Key Terms in this Chapter

Learning Dashboards: We consider well thought-out visual displays (dashboard) for correct decision-making with respect to different goals: supervision of the learners’ training path (that is, time tracking and results) and Formative dashboards (F-Db) that integrate semi-automated guiding and recommendations. The objectives are awareness for tutors to facilitate guiding and self-monitoring for learners with a correct level of adaptiveness for ROI.

Learning Analytics: Refers to measuring, collecting, analyzing and reporting the data provided about the learners and their training context to optimize the learning process, as well as to understand it in order to adapt pedagogical devices for tailored solutions. Aside from ethics, the issue lies in the selection of the right data for the learning goal because the learners interact with the contents and individual privacy choice biases the data. The target is automated methods for the processing of digital data and inference-drawing with respect to learning, trying to explain the relationships from “click to construct”, leading to the global challenge of Learning Analytics dashboard for measurement of the learning resources use with respect to a tailored training plan that can evolve and for recommendations.

Educational Data Mining: Aims at understanding the learners’ learning behavior better to set and customize trainings. It requests algorithms to aggregate data collected from online learning systems to bring out patterns. The topic covers prediction, usage and results for pedagogical device improvement.

Information System (IS): Is a socio-technical system (organization and persons, IT and business processes) of an organized set of resources to collect, store, process and distribute information for transaction processing, Management, Decision support and Execution. It contributes to the performance and development of a company in all its dimensions (economic, social…). One example is the Enterprise Resource Planning (ERP). Dashboards are ways to visualize the data. However, with a focus on the performance of the user in a specific field and for the business, the Electronic Performance Support System (EPSS) provides the “ just-in-time, just enough training, information, tools, and help for users of a product or work environment ” ( Bezanson, 2002 ). This also includes easy access to individualized online advice and learning experiences ( Raybould, 2000 ), referring to “ knowledge management ” and “ informal training ”. These are the principles for our Formative dashboard (F-Db).

Integrative Alternation and Work Integrated Learning: Is the core principle of WIL organization that alternates academic education periods at school with professional training periods in the company (sandwich courses). It is not an apposition of two contexts but a working together act with commitment and partnership. The choice takes into account work experience, learner-centered pedagogy and skills-based employability.

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