Action on Employability in English - an English: Shared Futures Satellite Event.

Posted by boo11 at Oct 07, 2019 04:40 PM |
This event was hosted at Northumbria University on 16th September 2019. It was co-organised by Prof. Katy Shaw (Northumbria University), Prof. Jennifer Richards (Newcastle University) and Dr. Andrea Macrae (Oxford Brookes University), with the assistance of Dr. Rebecca Fisher on behalf of the English Association. It was supported by University English and the English Association.


Preparing our students for their futures is a key aspect of the role of contemporary degree courses. Perspectives on the place of employability in higher education range from viewing it as a core part of all discipline-focussed degree work, as an inevitable or accidental by-product, or as an externally imposed and ill-fitting bolt-on. English degrees, in all their forms – specialising in literature, language and linguistics, or creative writing – equip students with invaluable knowledge and skills. Our graduates are critically astute and culturally sensitive; they are analytical thinkers and agile communicators.

This event asked: what we are doing to support students in recognising, developing and articulating the skills and aptitudes they gain through our courses, what can we do better, and how? It offered a day of sharing views, insights and good practice throughout the discipline, during which we explore different ways of thinking about, ‘embedding’, ‘extracting’, engaging with and talking about employability in our courses. The event involved panels share different in-curricula, co-curricula and extra-curricula approaches to employability. The end of the event was dedicated to current and future employability priorities for our graduates, and to finding and sharing constructive positions and messages about employability in HE English.

Two resources prepared for the event and shared here are:

Presentation materials from the event are also shared here, through the kind generosity of the contributing speakers, as follows:

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