• Marking Guidelines
• Extracts from WIL Topic Guides for BUSN 3044/9126/
• Report structure
Marking Guidelines Some guidelines for possible comments
1. Introduction: Describe the organisation, its product or service (the value it provides to someone), its internal structure, divisions, and where you sit and function in that structure. Perhaps some discussion of the strengths and weaknesses of the business.
2. Business Environment: Take the time to talk about the macro environment (remember PESTEL?) and the micro-environment (Customers, Competitors, Suppliers, External Stakeholders) and perhaps an idea of where opportunities and threats might arise.
3. Content of the Placement: What were you doing and how did that fit into the overall operations of the business?
4. Placement assessment: Reflect on what the placement gave you, how was your personal growth? Here I would take time to discuss how the placement helped you build on the University Graduate Qualities . Discuss the value of the placement experience to you and others who may have the experience after you. Be objective and honest but use diplomacy in your writing as appropriate. You should also discuss things that would have made the placement better. Be polite, but your honesty is appreciated. Link your experiences with the literature to draw parallels and/or make commentaries on the issues raised in academic writing about industry placements.
5. Conclusion: What is the most important point(s) you want to make about the placement, and your experience? All writing - of any sort - should have a central point and your conclusion is where you make that point. You should not introduce new material here but summarise the theme you developed in your paper.
6. Clarity and presentation: Make sure your Powerpoint slides (assuming the use of powerpoint) are clear and uncluttered without too much information. Use of selected images improves the impact. Spend some time on slide design to have a professional presentation, as if you were presenting to a professional audience. If you have used external reference sources have you used Harvard referencing and have you included a properly formatted reference list?
Acknowledgement: Cullen Habel.
Extracts from WIL Topic Guides for BUSN 3044/9126
Appendix A - Report structure for BUSN3044 / 9126 Industry Placement
1. Overall structure
The overall structure for the Placement Report is:
- Placement title page
- Executive summary
- Contents page
- Body of report (see below for more detail)
The length of the Placement Report is 1,500 to 2,000 words (BUSN3044) or 2,500 to 3,000 words (BUSN9126); reference list and appendices are not included in the word count.
2. Body of report
The body of the report has some flexibility; you may adapt the structure and the headings to the particular requirements of your individual placement. The content of the main sections for a Placement Report is:
Introduction. Describe the placement. Provide all the facts that someone who has no idea about the placement may need to know to orient them (i.e. who, what, when, where).
Business environment. Provide a detailed description of the internal and external environment of the placement organisation applying, in part, knowledge and from your studies to date. If in a disciplinespecific placement, make sure to discuss sub-issues relevant to the particular business discipline. This is similar in nature to strategic planning principles where a business/organisation must have a clear understanding of their internal and external environments so that management can design strategies to move the business towards its mission. In this regard we are asking you to describe the internal environment of the organisation: nature of the business in which you were placed in a relatively broad perspective describing the nature of the organisation’s business, its location(s) / branches/ divisions/ products/ services/ staffing resources/strategic direction/relative financial strength (if available)/customers, its internal management hierarchy and organisation, among other things. In addition to the internal environment you need a broad description of the external environment of the business also, including coverage of things like their industry/ market/ suppliers/ customers, important government regulation (if any) affecting the organisation/ important technological and legal issues/ cultural issues and so on. Within that description you will need to explain the function of the department or section in which you worked and its contribution to the organisation as a whole. This description should lead into the next section of the report relating to the “content of the placement”. The elements of the internal and external environment referred to above are only suggestions so you should not feel limited to discussing only those elements. Some research may be needed for you to fully understand what a description of internal and external environments of a business actually mean. The coverage does not have to be in significant detail but you should spend some time in your report demonstrating your understanding and observations of the environment of your host organisation.
Content of the placement. Describe the main tasks involved and the main responsibilities you assumed during the placement. Explain the role and value of these activities to the operation of the business.
Placement assessment. Provide your personal reflection on the placement. In this section of your report you are required to comment and reflect honestly and openly on your experience and the achievement of your personal goals by referring to the four WIL themes and readings upon which you commented as part of the assessment in this topic. You should compare the actual placement to the formal work description and to your individual goals (as outlined in the Industry Placement Agreement and/or work plan, where relevant). Explain any differences and include an assessment of the actual outcomes for the host organisation and for yourself. Outline your achievements in the placement – these may include but are not limited to:
• The skills you applied during the placement that were developed in your University studies to date;
• Skills you learned and began to develop during the placement;
• What you have learned from the placement from a personal perspective, including the possible identification of personal strengths, and areas for improvement;
• Reflect on how you might consider changing your learning style based on your experience during the placement;
• Reflect on the overall experience and how this might impact your future studies or the path into your chosen career.
Go beyond mentioning that ‘it was a good experience’ and describe the learning from a personal, social and industry perspective using the WIL themes provided as a base. You may refer to, and expand on, reflections contained in the mini-essays you posted as part of your placement. In this sense it is critical for you to link your experiences with the literature to draw parallels and/or make commentaries on the issues raised in academic writing about industry placements.
Conclusion. Outline what you would do differently if you did the same placement again (and why). Outline what you would tell/advise another student entering the same placement (and why).
Note that the Placement Report should contain analysis and not be simply descriptive. It is expected that students use references where possible and refer to appropriate concepts to explain the business environment and key tasks. Please ensure that you reference your work appropriately using the Harvard in-text referencing system.