Global Perspectives in Work-Integrated Learning

(First offered in 2015)

Provides practitioners the opportunity to enhance their understanding of the relationship between WIL and learning theory: how theory can inform WIL practice, models of WIL and current issues In WIL practice.

Module description


Foundation Module: Theoretical Background and Models

This module provides practitioners the opportunity to enhance their understanding of the relationship between WIL and learning theory; and how theory informs WIL from a global perspective.

Learning Outcomes:

By the end of the module, participants will be able to:

  1. Describe experiential learning theory and how it informs work-integrated learning (WIL) theory
  2. Appreciate the global perspective of WIL by describing different practices and models of WIL used around the world
  3. Apply experiential learning theory to a WIL challenge and/or actual WIL context


Fenwick, T.J. (2000). Expanding conceptions of experiential learning: a review of the five contemporary perspectives on cognition. Adult Education Quarterly. 50, 243-272.

Eames, C., & Cates, C. (2011). Theories of learning in cooperative education and work-integrated learning. In R.K. Coll & K.E. Zegwaard (Eds.). International handbook for cooperative education and work-integrated learning: International perspectives of Theory, Research and Practice 2nd Ed (pp. 37‐47). Lowell, MA: World Association for Cooperative Education.

Winchester-Seeto, T., McLachlan, K., Rowe, A., Solominides, I., & Williamson, K. (2017). Transformational learning – possibilities, theories, questions and challenges. In J. Sachs & L. Clark (Eds.), Learning through community engagement: Vision and practice in higher education (pp. 99-114). doi: 10.1007/978-981-10-0999-0_7

Participants will also identify other readings to use in conjunction with the above.


During the module there will be an on-line webinar and other forms of communication.

  1. Students will prepare for the webinar by completing readings and prepare a description of the models of WIL they are currently involved with and the predominant experiential learning perspective that pertains to their models (e.g. constructivist, critical-cultural, psychoanaltytical, situative, enactivist – Fenwick, 2000). (Approx 5 hours)
  2. Students will choose readings that apply to their models from two – three theorists from the perspective of experiential learning. Upon completing their readings, students will prepare findings about what it means to create a learning environment as a facilitator in their programs based on their chosen theoretical perspective. (Approx 5 hours)
  3. Students will participate in two webinars: an introductory webinar and a webinar where they will present their findings, identify for discussion a challenge faced by their model of WIL within the perspective identified in Activity Two. (Approx 5 hours)

Participation time:

Expected total participation time 15 – 20 hours – including preparation and participation in online tasks/activities.

Certificate of completion:

On completion of the module, participants will receive a Certificate of Completion. This will be awarded to participants who complete all the required tasks/activities.

Module plan

Global Perspectives in WIL – Provisional Module Plan 2020

Wk beg Aim of activity Preparation by participants Online activity by participants Facilitator
Oct 12 Introductions: Getting to know other participants and familiarization with module Become familiar with online site – particularly two readings listed in Module DescriptorBook into one of the webinars Participants and facilitators introduce themselves in the Discussion Forum online.  All facilitators
Oct 19 Set readingsAim: to become familiar with initial readings in experiential learning theory (Learning outcome a) Read the two of the three readings listed in Module Descriptor

First webinar – introductions and discussion of readingsPost a brief review of one reading (100 – 200 words)

& contribute to online discussion in Discussion Forum

Oct 26

Describing models of WILAims:

· identify models of WIL and the theorists pertaining to that model

· appreciate global perspective of WIL

(Learning outcomes a and b)

Prepare online posting Post brief description of model of WIL currently involved with and the predominant experiential learning perspective pertaining to that model (200 – 300 words)
Nov 2 As above Book into one of the webinars Online discussion of the above
Nov 9 Preparation for webinar Participants prepare for webinar  Post description of a WIL problem (100 – 200 words)Online discussion of the above
Nov 16 Webinar organisation and briefing Send slides & materials to facilitators
Nov 23 Second webinarAim: show how to create a learning environment (outcome a, b and c) At webinar prepare findings, identify for discussion a challenge faced by your model of WIL Participate in second webinar – discussion of WIL issue and relationship to theory Webinar facilitators
Nov 30 Conclusion of module Final online discussion and conclusion to the module All facilitators