Mapping Work-based Learning in Peace and Security Studies
In recent years, the incorporation of practical experiences into university curricula increasingly became a standard across various disciplines and study programmes. Likewise, in the field of Peace, Conflict and Security Studies (PCS) both scholars and employers have stressed the necessity for...
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|In recent years, the incorporation of practical experiences
into university curricula increasingly
became a standard across various disciplines
and study programmes. Likewise, in the field of
Peace, Conflict and Security Studies (PCS) both
scholars and employers have stressed the necessity
for a closer integration of academic skills
with practical experience.
The project ‘Integration of Work-based Learning
in Conflict, Peace and Security Studies’ primarily
aims to strengthen the structural integration
of practical skill development in MA level
curricula of higher education institutions in Europe.
Therefore, this report lays grounds for the project
by analysing potential benefits of Workbased
Learning (WBL) for the field, by providing
a conceptual base and by both quantitatively and
qualitatively investigating forms of WBL within
Europe that have been used in PCS so far.
For the research, we scrutinised the six project
members’ programmes in PCS and collected insights
from eight additional institutes engaged in
peace, conflict and security education. The Qualitative
Survey and the analysis of its results
mainly focused on the diversity of WBL activities,
the operationalisation and integration of
WBL experience into the curriculum, as well as
the (institutional) assistance and assessment of
The project’s ‘working definition’ of WBL
summarises common points extracted from the
inspected academic literature and debates
within the project’s consortium to align all project
partners’ understanding of the WBL practices.
WBL is defined as:
An approach in higher education, which aims
to merge theory and practice. It entails students
working in or with organisations in the
field, gaining practical experience, while utilising
and reflecting on their academic skills.
Secondly, it yields an increase in educational
resources, new impressions, networks, innovative
ideas and critical reflection on the applicability
of learnt theories. In addition, WBL
brings together different stakeholders such
as teachers, students and professional organisations.