Ideally students should be prepared for work experience through regular timetabled classes where there is an opportunity to
Introduce them to how the work experience links in to the school curriculum
Explain the objectives of the work experience
Help them develop an understanding of the personal and key skills required in the workplace
Guide them in how to research and source placements
Advise on appropriate behaviour and health and safety issues during placement
Inform them of assignments they will need to undertake before, during, and after the work experience, e.g. logbooks or diaries.
Getting the most out of the Placement
There is much that can be learned during the course of a work experience if students are appropriately prepared, and know what to look out for. The LCA and LCVP programmes have specific learning outcomes associated with work placements, and credits are awarded to students for their final Leaving Cert exam.
Outside of these programmes, work placements need some focus to maximize the time being spent. The WorkXperience programme encourages the development of a range of Key Skills as set out by the NCCA. Students using the WorkXperience Diary and Workbook (available from CareersPortal) can engage with their work experience to complete a range of useful activities aimed at determining whether a particular line of work appeals to them or not.