Purdie, Fiona, Ward, Lisa J., McAdie, Tina M., King, Nigel and Drysdale, Maureen (2013) Are work-integrated learning (WIL) students better equipped psychologically for work post-graduation than their non-work-integrated learning peers? Some initial findings from a UK university. Asia Pacific Journal of Co-operative Education, 14 (2). pp. 117-125. ISSN 1175-2882

Work-integrated learning (WIL) provides an opportunity to develop the skills, knowledge, competence, and experience, which increase employability and lead to more satisfying careers. Research indicates that WIL results in improved academic- and occupationally-related outcomes. However, there is a paucity of quantitative research examining the psychological impact of WIL. The study aimed to determine whether students who pursue WIL in the UK, differ significantly in terms of self-concept, self-efficacy, hope, study skills, motivation, and procrastination than students who have not participated in WIL. The methodology used a cross-sectional analysis of a large sample (n=716) of undergraduate students at the University of Huddersfield, UK. Results showed significant differences predominantly centred upon measures which pertain to students’ confidence in setting and attaining goals. The increased hope and confidence in goal attainment suggest that gaining work experience perhaps enhances the ability to set and achieve goals once in the work force. (Asia-Pacific Journal of Cooperative Education, 2013, 14(2), 117-125)
Keywords: Employability; Psychological factors; Work-integrated learning; Placement; Confidence; Self esteem

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