This paper will consider the impact of an Arts Council initiative launched in the North West with a partnership of Universities, Regional Dance Agencies, Venues and Creatives alongside twelve graduates. Themes of employability, self motivation and the implications for teaching and learning Dance in HE are explored.
The presentation will engage the participants in a discussion which will consider the current employability agenda and exactly what makes a dance graduate employable. Twelve Degrees North Graduate Company was created in response to a number of consultancy reports which highlighted the need for the dance development opportunities that would encourage graduates to remain in the North West region (Siddal,2008).The commentary of some reports bore implications for nationwide HE provision in terms of the recognition of a hybrid diversity of dance(Hall,2007) and in Mapping Dance (Burns,2007) advocated an entrepreneurial approach in preparation for graduate employment. Burns suggested that an emphasis on self –management, career management and market placement was essential for employability within the dance world.
As educators we have to key questions to consider. Can we compare Conservatoire training to the more concentrated practice as research agenda found on a university Dance Programme? Within the North West Graduate company there are combinations of both which enables us to view the research from two defined perspectives. The first introduces the graduate voice and how graduates capture their journey as twelve very different individuals. How do graduates perceive their undergraduate experience and how do they apply this knowledge? Jo Rhodes (2008) from Arcane Dance, observed that graduates recognise the value of applied practice within their degree programmes but the reality of the real world experience was considerably different. How far can we measure our effectiveness in channelling this critical understanding?
The second perspective is a reflection from a project management and steering group position. How do we as HE educators within a partnership, continue to create a learning environment that is consistent in supporting emerging dance professionals?
There are many headlines which are critical to teaching and learning and how we strive to channel our pedagogy to maintain relevance and currency with the developing dance landscape. Can universities produce the employable graduate and could the essential ingredient to success be consideration of the determinants of self determined motivation? (SDT; Deci &Ryan, 1985, 200). Are employers willing to accept the graduate as a work in progress or are they favouring the finished article? In the Dance Training and Accreditation Report (Burns, 2008) observes that the profession is picking up the gaps in initial training. In order to meet the needs of portfolio dancers the HE sector must meet the challenge to furnish students with a broader skills base .
Finally, we will discuss how HE is faced with the question of how we shape graduates to become employable and to what extent we can influence the process. How do we harness intrinsically motivated behaviours? What does the graduate tool kit look like? Does it include knowledge of the sector, communication strategies awareness of others? There will be discourse to consider motivational theories and how this is could be the essential ingredient to success.
|Publication status||Published - 30 May 2013|
|Event||Storyville - Brighton, United Kingdom|
Duration: 29 May 2013 → 30 May 2013
|Period||29/05/13 → 30/05/13|