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Developing an institutional evaluation of the impact of work-integrated learning on employability and employment

Student participation in work-integrated learning (WIL) is commonly held to enhance graduate employability and employment outcomes. Nevertheless, there exists significant research that questions the nature of this relationship. For many reasons, universities are unlikely to reduce their efforts and interest in WIL for students. However, for both quality assurance and quality improvement processes, it is important for institutions to evaluate the contribution of WIL to graduate employability and employment. Based on a critical review of the research literature, the rationale for an institutional proposal for the evaluation of the contribution of WIL to graduate employability and employment is developed and presented. The research literature suggests that the relationship between WIL and graduate outcomes is likely to be complex and context dependent. A methodology that others can adopt, adapt, or use as a stimulus for thinking, in their own unique institutional context is offered here.