Work placements for bioscience undergraduates: Are they really necessary?

K. Bullock, M. Hejmadi, G. Lock

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

2 Citations (SciVal)


Degree-integrated placements (DIPs) are an important learning experience for many bioscience undergraduates. How these extended experiences will be affected by the proposed changes in higher education funding in the UK is uncertain. This paper explores one bioscience degree programme to investigate the contention that learning outcomes, traditionally attributed to extended undergraduate work placements, can equally well be gained from other strands of teaching in higher education institutions. The research compares two groups of bioscience students: those who have been on a DIP and those who have not. It gauges the acquisition of transferable skills in both workplace settings and also in three other strands of the degree programme. Findings suggest that the broad learning that is gained from a DIP cannot be replicated in other strands of undergraduate experience; nor can it be achieved in less structured types of work experience. Possible reasons for this are discussed.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)4-11
Number of pages8
JournalJournal of Biological Education
Issue number1
Publication statusPublished - 2012


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