Can Work-related Learning Activities Improve Student Engagement in Higher Education?

Authors: Albinson, P.

Start date: 16 April 2019

Publisher: BCS

Place of Publication: London, UK

Research has found higher education students are typically passive and disengaged. This paper updates and expands upon the author’s previous study of engagement issues in universities and the value of work-related learning for improving engagement and enhancing student learning. This previous work involved a case study designed to improve engagement in lab sessions with realistic/real-world work-based examples. While results indicated that activities like this can increase engagement and enhance student learning the study only involved a small sample and there were some areas for improvement. Consequently, the study has been repeated with an expanded case study which takes a holistic approach where students take on the role of an ethical hacker to identify security weaknesses and then fix those security issues. Findings corroborate the previous study’s findings and add further weight to the argument that work-related learning activities can increase engagement and enhance the student experience and student learning.

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