C. Govender, K. Modisagae, S. Taylor

University of Johannesburg (SOUTH AFRICA)
Implementing work integrated learning (WIL) as part of the teaching, learning and assessment in a specific discipline is an exciting yet complex and challenging undertaking. Implementing WIL across disciplines is an even more exciting yet highly risky endeavor. This paper reports on the transdisciplinary WIL implementation in a South African city university using the Human Resource Management (HRM) WIL Partnership model.

WIL was implemented in the disciplines of HRM and Commercial Accounting to ensure that students that graduate from their learning programmes are exposed to the world of work. The WIL project management reflections during the pre-implementation, implementation and post-implementation phases were analysed for common, different and profound themes. This qualitative ethnographic case study allowed research participants (discipline WIL project leaders and institutional WIL coordinator) to document their reflections and present their personal perspectives on ten process evaluation criteria.

The findings reveal that the research participants managed the transdisciplinary WIL implementation superbly. Although they all began the WIL implementation with some excitement, intermittent nervousness and justified concerns, at the post-implementation phase, they report gratification, satisfaction, achievement and self-pride. The WIL model validity, preparation of students, academic support and operational experience gained rank amongst the highest strengths of the transdisciplinary WIL research.

This paper contributes to theory by adding to the body of knowledge on the transdisciplinary management of WIL projects. It also contributes to practice by presenting lived research reflections on specific WIL project evaluation criteria.