3rd April 2016 A Employability Scenario Workshop Event?

My kids are at their grandparents for a couple of days so I can try to get on top of my awaiting transcription work – audio recordings with my ex-media students, who are now very much part of my research narrative. It’s funny how I then turned to ironing for nearly three and a half hours in the hope that my laptop might miraculously autoscribe for me. No surprise, it didn’t. So I thought I might just return here to report a new avenue of thought I happened to arrive at whilst ironing. My researcher instinct knew that if I ironed some clarity might happen.

Mini Break-Through Or Break-Down.

My thought is this:

At the end of tracking their ‘Top 5’ transferable skills accrued during their final project on the course (April-June), I think it would be good to take on board the idea suggested by GW and RJ of ‘scenarios’  but take it one step further – actually hold a transferable skills workshop/ research event where participant learning can culminate in a co-production. We can devise scenarios for each other (including me, students can ask me to react to scenarios they create for me). Whilst devising scenarios, participants (and me) can take on board and integrate some of the retold experiences of the ex-media students interviewed.

I had considered if I should add ex-media suggested key transferable skills to the list (see my previous post) however this would just mean the list gets longer again and would inevitably further deter usage (based on focus group feedback). The way to incorporate their employment experiences/ narratives is to incorporate them within a summative workshop event. Participants can determine the format and content (including how to record the evidence generated). Therefore (hopefully), having had the chance to reflect over a series of months (via using the tracker), participants will actively engage more with a subject that on the surface is really quite dry. Something I am aware of. The workshop activities will facilitate aural application of transferable skills in a participant-devised setting. Participant knowledge can be applied through role-play.

There can be 3 levels of input:

  1. Self-devised scenarios (co-production).
  2. Scenarios based on ex-student narratives.
  3. Unknown scenarios, I can obtain from Employability specialists/ Human Resources.

The summative transferable skills research workshop will signify a timely and appropriate opportunity in time to fuse the diverse components of this research project:

The three key story strands so far are:

1) Action Research Cycles: Participant tracking documentation (ongoing) punctuated with reviews (focus group and individual).

2) Ex-media student narratives (audio interviews X 4 so far).

3) My own engagement as facilitator of action research cycles and workshop event. I too will be a visible and active participant as I (alongside the the MED2 participants) will be subject to elucidating verbal responses to scenarios based on my own thinking and employment history (education/ media sectors). The Further Education (FE) sector is continually at the mercy of further cuts and redundancies therefore I too need to think about my own skills at this point in time and I believe it is useful for participants to see me work through similar devised scenarios. No-one is immune as we all share space on this evolving sphere. The research workshop event can be viewed as an attempt to bridge any anxieties associated with employability as we try to individually frame our positional skills but as a collective cohort. In creating and participating in a practice led event such as this, it will serve to test the viability of the research problematic itself.

I now need a tutorial just to throw this back to by supervisors at BU before I get carried away. I am due one in a couple of weeks, by which time I will have finished transcribing my interviews. I haven’t transcribed one word today and my kids left the house seven hours ago.



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