Full paper Higher Education Research and Development Society of Australasia 2015

Fit for practice: The tale of two professions (#78)

Ieva Stupans 1 , Sue McAllister 2
  1. University of New England, Armidale, NSW, Australia
  2. Flinders University of South Australia, Adelaide, SA, Australia

Abstract Content

In response to demands for health graduates, who are “fit for practice” the learning outcomes for health profession’ University programs are now typically defined by professional competency frameworks. Students are deemed work ready when they have demonstrated these competencies, at an appropriate level; opportunities for demonstration are provided through good curriculum design focussed on alignment between specific competencies and their assessment. This paper compares and contrasts the expectations of graduates for the two health disciplines of Pharmacy and Speech Pathology. The related impact of how professional accreditation processes conceptualise the requisite knowledge, skills and attributes of graduates and the effect this has on assessing, evidencing and evaluating these is examined. We also discuss the implications for university teachers and the tensions around educating professionals entering uncertain, changing and complex practice environments where graduates need to be able to constantly adapt and develop skills throughout their professional life.

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