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Transforming multiple stakeholder insights into education action: Developing a pragmatic EIT professional advisory framework Transforming multiple stakeholder insights into education action: Developing a pragmatic EIT professional advisory framework HOT

BACKGROUND  

This  paper  discusses  the  formation  of  a  stakeholder  engagement  framework  for  a  Professional Advisory  board  (PAb).  These  collaborative  undertakings  were  initially  conducted  to  review  post-graduate programs in the Faculty of Engineering and Information Technology (FEIT) at the University of Technology Sydney (UTS). This led to the realisation of a pragmatic and collaborative engagement process that benefits industry and the education sector whilst developing students that are able to deal with current and emergent challenges. 

PURPOSE OR GOAL 

The  PAb  is  a  network  of  academics,  students,  alumni  and  industry  members  that  undertakes  to engage, advice and review discipline-specific faculty programs from multiple perspectives to ensure that programs remain relevant and valuable to industry. As the faculty moves towards reengineering their approach to teaching and learning as part of a university-wide initiative known as ‘Learning 2014’ (L2014),  this  provides  the  opportunity  to  shape  a  more  engaged  and  collaborative  teaching  and learning culture within its programs.  

DESIGN/METHODS 

The collaborative stakeholder process was built upon an intensive series of mixed methods and action research initiatives as engagement mechanisms. These pragmatic and emergent mechanisms  involved  quantitative  surveys,  focus  groups,  in-depth  interviews,  industry workshops and multiple rounds of academic consultations. 

RESULTS 

The PAb framework was piloted in June 2014. Initial results from a feedback survey are also reported. The collaborative framework, whilst promising, engaging and conceptually robust, has not yet reached a  stable  state.  The  framework  will  be  extended  to  other  EIT  disciplines  in  order  to  evaluate  its outcomes  across  various  disciplinary  contexts  and  to  optimise  the  framework’s  efficacy  for  future iterations.  This  paper  suggests  a  pragmatic  and  robust  framework  to  integrate  industry  and stakeholder  expectations  with  faculty  program  deliverables  in  a  way  that  is  valuable,  relevant  and rewarding. 

CONCLUSIONS  

In this initial framework, industry stakeholders and academics are given a voice to share their priorities and interests. More than that, the PAb provides a forum where areas that are less common, untapped or unknown to the rest of the group can be shared, further explored and tested. While the group is new and still evolving, different EIT aspects that have not yet been undertaken in education that may be potentially powerful could be explored in the future to ensure that we are able to support long term value in the various facets of EIT education. The PAb is proving to be a robust and balanced group of professionals  and  academics  that  provide  technical  and  practical  perspectives  to  ensure  EIT education remains relevant and current. 

KEYWORDS  

Industry engagement, stakeholders, advisory framework 

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Created 2016-11-13
Changed 2016-11-13
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Created by Lynette
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