Work-Based Courses: Bringing College to the Production Line

Expand/Collapse Work-Based Courses: Bringing College to the Production Line


Learn about work-based courses: credit-bearing community college courses redesigned in partnership with employers so that competencies are taught both in the classroom or lab and on the job. This collection of videos from Jobs for the Future (JFF) examines the major stages of program design and implementation and explains how each stakeholder—including colleges, manufacturing employers, and incumbent workers—benefits. Support materials offer active viewing questions and targeted links to a toolkit that contains guidance for those interested in implementing work-based courses in their college or workplace.

Scroll down to see the media resources in this collection.

  • Introducing Work-Based Courses

    Discover work-based courses, a new learning model that combines credit-bearing classroom instruction with on-the-job training, in this video from Jobs for the Future (JFF). Community and technical colleges like OCTC in Kentucky are working “hand-in-glove” with employers, including Kimberly-Clark and OMICO Plastics, to design and implement programs that capitalize on the instruction that takes place day to day in any type of production process to reinforce concepts being taught in college classrooms. In work-based courses, student learning is formally assessed by employer supervisors, who act as mentors by showing students how to perform job tasks and then observing the students as they work. Each stakeholder in work-based courses, including colleges, employers, and students, benefits in important ways.

    Click on Support Materials for background information, discussion questions, and follow-up information about the Work-Based Courses Toolkit. This resource is part of the Work-Based Courses: Bringing College to the Production Line collection.

    Find out more about the Work-Based Course Model.

    Grades: 9-13+
  • Organizational Readiness

    Examine what community colleges need to do to successfully implement work-based courses, in this video from Jobs for the Future (JFF). With the support of the school president, vice president, and other administrators, faculty program coordinators at Owensboro Community and Technical College (OCTC) have successfully partnered with manufacturing companies to develop work-based courses that meet both student and employer needs. This resource is especially useful for college administrators and faculty.

    Click on Support Materials for background information, discussion questions, and follow-up information about the Work-Based Courses Toolkit. This resource is part of the Work-Based Courses: Bringing College to the Production Line collection.

    Find out more about the Work-Based Course Model.

    Grades: 13+
  • Building Faculty Support

    Learn why building faculty support for work-based courses is critical to their success, in this video from Jobs for the Future (JFF). Having community college faculty with industry experience is especially valuable because the instructors know what it’s like to do the job in the real world and can prepare students for the same experiences. In developing its work-based courses program, Owensboro Community and Technical College (OCTC) involved its faculty from the start. Together, they examined how this new model would benefit the college, students, and manufacturers. This resource is especially useful for program administrators.

    Click on Support Materials for background information, discussion questions, and follow-up information about the Work-Based Courses Toolkit. This resource is part of the Work-Based Courses: Bringing College to the Production Line collection.

    Find out more about the Work-Based Course Model.

    Grades: 13+
  • Mapping Work-Based Competencies With Curriculum

    Learn about the collaborative process of mapping work-based competencies to an existing course curriculum, in this video from Jobs for the Future (JFF). The process starts when employer and college representatives meet to see how the competencies are associated with existing courses. Employers assemble their technicians to do a job task analysis for the workplace. They write down critical tasks in their workday and break down the steps to completing these tasks. Colleges then use the tasks to inform the course design, determining which knowledge and skills can be taught in the workplace and which should be taught through classroom and lab instruction. This resource is especially useful for employer representatives, college administrators, and core course-design team.

    Click on Support Materials for background information, discussion questions, and follow-up information about the Work-Based Courses Toolkit. This resource is part of the Work-Based Courses: Bringing College to the Production Line collection.

    Find out more about the Work-Based Course Model.

    Grades: 13+
  • Designing Outcomes and Assessment Instruments

    Examine the joint work that community colleges and employers must undertake to evaluate the workplace skills of work-based students, in this video from Jobs for the Future (JFF). One of the critical elements for designing a work-based course is having an assessment instrument that maps onto learning requirements and work activities. To ensure that the instruments being developed serve both college and employer needs, program administrators and faculty need to work in tandem with company leadership. The employer helps identify those tasks students must perform to be deemed proficient at their job, and the faculty then designs easy-to-use instruments to help evaluate knowledge and skills and determine a student’s grade. This resource is especially useful for employer supervisors, program administrators, and college faculty.

    Click on Support Materials for background information, discussion questions, and follow-up information about the Work-Based Courses Toolkit. This resource is part of the Work-Based Courses: Bringing College to the Production Line collection.

    Find out more about the Work-Based Course Model.

    Grades: 13+
  • Preparing Supervisors to Be Mentors

    Examine the process that community colleges and employers use when training supervisors for their role in a work-based course team, in this video from Jobs for the Future (JFF). Even an expert employee with good people skills may not be fully prepared to help a student learn to perform critical tasks in a real-life setting, so training for this is essential. In their role as mentors, employer supervisors will need to identify teachable moments, either during the production process or after some critical task has been done. They must be able to demonstrate a task to the student that the student can then demonstrate with the mentor present. Colleges can help with this training. This resource is especially useful for program administrators and college faculty.

    Click on Support Materials for background information, discussion questions, and follow-up information about the Work-Based Courses Toolkit. This resource is part of the Work-Based Courses: Bringing College to the Production Line collection.

    Find out more about the Work-Based Course Model.

    Grades: 13+
  • Collaboration Between Faculty and Employer Mentors

    Learn about the benefits of ongoing communication between college faculty and employer supervisors or mentors in work-based courses, in this video from Jobs for the Future (JFF). When faculty and employer supervisors engage one another, it promotes the exchange of feedback on course performance and how to help work-based students progress. Cultivating relationships and sharing information also helps college faculty stay up to date with issues in the field and lets employers know that work-based courses are really helping them fill in the gaps in their workforce. This resource is especially useful for employer supervisors and college faculty.

    Click on Support Materials for background information, discussion questions, and follow-up information about the Work-Based Courses Toolkit. This resource is part of the Work-Based Courses: Bringing College to the Production Line collection.

    Find out more about the Work-Based Course Model.

    Grades: 13+
  • Work-Based Courses in Action

    Explore work-based courses in action as Chris Sapp, electrical supervisor at OMICO Plastics, trains work-based students in electrical troubleshooting on the factory floor, in this video from Jobs for the Future (JFF). As a seasoned company supervisor, Sapp is a technical expert. In his mentoring role, he provides real-life learning opportunities—teachable moments—that are tied to the academic instruction workers receive in their community college classrooms. Sapp helps guide the students through the process and answers any questions they might have. The students also bring questions from their work experiences into the classroom. This resource is especially useful for employer supervisors and college faculty.

    Click on Support Materials for background information, discussion questions, and follow-up information about the Work-Based Courses Toolkit. This resource is part of the Work-Based Courses: Bringing College to the Production Line collection.

    Find out more about the Work-Based Course Model.

    Grades: 13+
  • Connecting Students to College

    Meet Corey Marchand and Tyler Ashton, two student workers advancing their careers through work-based courses, in this video from Jobs for the Future (JFF). As their stories demonstrate, work-based courses are a gateway to community college education for manufacturing workers. Community colleges work with individuals who want to “skill up” to advance their training and have a better career. Employers like OMICO Plastics consider sponsoring workers in their continuing education “a perfect way” to build company loyalty among employees. This resource is especially useful for employer supervisors, college program administrators and faculty, incumbent workers, and technical high school faculty and students.

    Click on Support Materials for background information, discussion questions, and follow-up information about the Work-Based Courses Toolkit. This resource is part of the Work-Based Courses: Bringing College to the Production Line collection.

    Find out more about the Work-Based Course Model.

    Grades: 9-13+

Contributor:
Contributor:
Contributor:
Contributor:
Funder:
Producer: