Higher Education and the Future of Graduate Employability
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Higher Education and the Future of Graduate Employability

A Connectedness Learning Approach

Edited by Ruth Bridgstock and Neil Tippett

This book challenges the dominant ‘employability skills’ discourse by exploring socially connected and networked perspectives to learning and teaching in higher education. Both learning and career development happen naturally and optimally in ecologies, informal communities and partnerships. In the digital age, they are also highly networked. This book presents ten empirical case studies of educational practice that investigate the development of learner capabilities, teaching approaches, and institutional strategies in higher education, to foster lifelong graduate employability through social connectedness.
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Chapter 15: Future connections: implications for connectedness strategy, pedagogy and capability in higher education

Ruth Bridgstock and Neil Tippett

Abstract

This chapter reviews and discusses the key findings that emerged from the ten case studies of connectedness learning practice, considering the current connectedness capabilities of higher education students and recent graduates, the potential for using existing pedagogic strategies to integrate connectedness into higher education curricula, and the challenges and opportunities associated with implementing broader institutional enabling strategies to foster greater intra- and inter-institutional connectedness. The application of the Connectedness Learning Approach across differing higher education contexts suggests that there is no single way in which universities should support connectedness learning. Rather, connectedness learning requires a detailed understanding of the institution, its students and its wider stakeholders, through which the pedagogic approaches and wider enabling strategies that enhance connectedness capabilities can be designed and enacted. Finally, in considering the future of higher education, the chapter asks what are the future forces that will shape learners, learning, teaching, and the university, and what role will connectedness play in supporting higher education to navigate the turbulent times ahead?

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