What is the Effect of a Software Studio Experience on a Student's Employability?

Publication Type:
Conference Proceeding
ACM International Conference Proceeding Series, 2019, pp. 28 - 36
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© 2019 Association for Computing Machinery. Our software studio demonstrably increases students' employability, according to the empirical findings of this study, and an evaluation of these findings based on the CareerEDGE Employability Development Profile. We provide a studio environment in which students work in mixed teams on real software projects for clients, under the guidance of industry and academic mentors. This study used open-ended interviews and ethnographic observations in the studio sessions to understand employability success. Skills found important for employability include: Collaboration and communication, project management, supporting each other to resolve technical issues, seeking help from industry mentors and academics, social aspects of work (working with clients and mentors), reflection skills and technical skills. These skills were compared with the CareerEDGE Employability Development Profile and found to give good coverage of employability skills. Contributions made by this study to computing education are: • A deep empirical understanding of students' perspectives and what they value about their employability as a result of participating in the software studio • An evaluation of our findings against the CareerEDGE employability framework, in a technical learning environment • Findings from an investigation that is complementary to students' perspectives collected in accordance with the CareerEDGE approach, where the data is collected via a questionnaire with 5-point Likert scale responses; our interviews were open-ended and accompanied by ethnographic observations.
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