LEARNING AND TEACHING EXPECTATIONS OF COURSEWORK POSTGRADUATE STUDENTS: AN AUSTRALIAN CASE-STUDY

Ian Thomas, Teresa Day, Kathryn Hegarty

Abstract


Postgraduate coursework programs (PCW) have expanded to provide both specialised knowledge, and a broader base of knowledge for students wishing to change careers. As all categories of university programs are being subjected to increasing degrees of accountability two similar PCWs in Australia, focused around environment and planning, were investigated to ascertain their performance, which was assessed through a survey of the students. A framework of features of PCWs was developed from the literature associated with post-graduate education and this framework served as the basis for developing the structure of the survey. The internet based survey had responses from 35% of the enrolled students. Over 60% of respondents were studying to assist in a career change. A range of results was apparent with two particular insights for educators being apparent. Respondents wanted to see the career relevance of their experiences and theories they studied, and were seeking flexible study options.  Respondents also indicated strong preferences for being guided in their learning. While these results come from only one case study, they provide educators developing and running PCW with insights into the concerns of students, and which may be important in the operation of PCWs more generally. 


Keywords


Post-graduate, Coursework, Pedagogy, Assessment, Australia

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