Tracking Student Work-Based Learning Activities

They say that when you write a blog, most of your content should focus on informing or helping the reader. However a small number of posts, maybe one in 10, can be self-promotional. (After all, people still need to make a living in order to keep writing their blogs!)

This is my “one in 10” self-promotional post, because I’m genuinely excited about a new feature coming soon in our work-based learning tool, SeamlessWBL.

As most of you already know, this tool was created to help educators manage their work-based learning and advisory board activities. It has the educator at the center, trying to help them manage their partner relationships and more easily keep track of their work-based learning activities.

But even though students aren’t the primary user, we always knew that there would be great benefit in connecting them to the system in some way. Our original vision was somewhat limited: Connecting them to higher-end activities like internships, so they could log in and upload training agreements, time sheets, and self-evaluations.

What we heard from several users, however, is that they wanted more. Many told us that the “holy grail” would be to run a report on a student showing all the work-based learning activities they had done throughout their school careers. Not only would that be valuable in assessing their preparedness for the future (and possibly even useful in building a resume), it might even feed into state assessment models with some of the changes coming with Perkins V.

So we’re doing it. We had first thought about adding this as part of a “Phase 3” in early 2020, but thanks to the talents of our developers, we’re going to go ahead and include it in our July expansion. Users will see a student portal where they can tag the students in their classes and connect them, individually or in groups, to all their work-based learning activities. What’s more, students will have their own portals where they can see information on the activities to which they’ve been connected, and upload materials as appropriate.

I was excited about this tool before – but thanks to the creativity of our users and the talent of our development team, I truly see SeamlessWBL as a game-changer in work-based learning.

We’re still fleshing out the details – there are some interesting challenges that come up when you add in a major new component like this – but we’ll have more details to share soon. In the meantime, if you want to see SeamlessWBL firsthand in its current form, visit our website to see features and pricing information, and sign up for one of our twice-weekly demos.

Brett Pawlowski is Executive Vice President of NC3T, the National Center for College and Career Transitions ( NC3T provides planning, coaching, technical assistance and tools to help community-based leadership teams plan and implement their college-career pathway systems and strengthen employer connections with education.

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