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CONTRIBUTION TO BEST PRACTICE GUIDE: EMPLOYABILITY WIKI

WORKING WITH INDUSTRY TO NURTURE THE


TALENT THEY NEED
EDU120 PGCHE Assignment 4 by Darren Whittington 03/15
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INTRODUCTION:
This Wiki is based upon the experiences within BA(Hons) Creative Advertising and
how it has managed to embed industry within the course to help it give Level 3
students employment opportunities, the industry the talent that has relevant
expertise and the course a way of staying at the front-line of an ever-changing
industry.
THE BACKGROUND:
Advertising is a fast paced industry that is at the forefront of communication. Its a
business that constantly evolves and no more so than during the recession that
began in 2007 when advertising budgets were slashed and many companies were
forced to rethink their strategies(1. Martin Sorrell. Economist. 2009).
The up side to this was that the industry fragmented and created multitudes of
areas of expertise that embraced new media, invented others and found new ways
to engage with consumers creating a melting pot of specialist areas that has seen
the industry diversify to find new market share(2. Bloomberg. 2014) which has
helped contribute to the 20% increase in employability in the advertising sector
between 2011-2013(3. Dept. of Culture Report. 2014).
In a teaching profession that focuses on employability the course needed to stay in
touch with the pace of change to make sure that what we teach is relevant to the
agencies and create the specialist talent that they need.
HOW THE COLLABORATION WORKS IN PRACTICE:
The course created a framework for the agencies to engage within and opened up a
module that could be delivered by collaboration and fulfill Objective 2 of the
Strategic Plan(4.Falmouth University.2012-2017). This module allowed the agencies
to set live briefs that were relevant to their sector areas in the industry together with

the learning outcomes set within the module MIF, supported by workshops run by
lecturers and a lecture series that was delivered by the agencies on campus or
remotely.
The framework allowed for 6 agency briefs within one module during one semester,
giving the student a broad knowledge of the industry and access to expertise that
that could be shared within the teaching environment.
The workshops that followed each brief helped expand the context of the briefs
within the industry and how these new sectors of advertising are developing a new
economy within the creative sector.
The lecture series supported the workshops and briefs with leading talent from the
agencies that opened up new knowledge that was otherwise unattainable within the
education environment.
Throughout this framework the agencies were encouraged to give first hand
feedback to students in accordance to the NUS feedback charter(5. Principles 3 &
8) to help develop their thinking through formative assessment and the potential
for shining students to present at the agency to get a foot in the door, network and
possibly gain a placement/internship.
WHAT ARE THE RESULTS:
FOR THE STUDENT
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First hand feedback


Live briefs
Foot in the door
Development of presentation skills
Networking
Clearer understanding of future goals
Potential placement/employability

FOR THE COURSE


-

Access to expertise that would otherwise be unavailable to the course


The briefs were unique, relevant a future focused
PR, kudos, and industry acknowledgement
A framework to encourage other agencies to partake in
A network within the industry with a long term vision for growth
Direct relationships with agencies
94% DHLE 2013 Employability rate
26 placement opportunities from 6 agencies in one semester for 14
students out of 26 in Level 3

FOR THE AGENCY


-

A clear time frame to work with that was designed to be as minimal as


possible with maximum student engagement.
It doesnt require the agency to be on campus.
The flexibility to engage as much as was possible based on their workload.
Access to bright, well informed students.
Stronger candidates for employment.
Risk free.

REFERENCES:
1. Sorrell. Martin. 2009. The Economist. Available at:
http://www.economist.com/node/14140373
(Accessed 01/03/15)
2. Bloomberg. 2014. Advertisings century of flat line growth. Available at:
http://www.bloomberg.com/bw/articles/2014-03-03/advertisings-century-of-flatline-growth
(Accessed 03/03/15)
3. Creative Industries: Focus on Employment 2014. Available at:
https://www.gov.uk/government/statistics/creative-industries-focus-onemployment
4. Falmouth University. 2012. Strategic Plan 2012-2017. Available at:
http://www.falmouth.ac.uk/corporate/strategicplan
5. NUS. 2014. Charter on Feedback & Assessment. Available at:
http://www.nusconnect.org.uk/asset/news/6010/FeedbackCharter-toview.pdf