The Insight Programme is our employability programme for Psychology undergraduate students.
It spans all three years of the degree and seeks to build the experience and confidence of our students from school through to the workplace. The work placement is an optional module in the final year of our degree. Its objectives are:
- to provide the student with an insight into the world of work before graduation
- to allow the student to apply their Psychology experience and skills to an employer’s business, department or specific project
- to encourage students to reflect on their skill base and future career aspirations
Our students have been placed with a range of employers across sectors as diverse as advertising, financial consultancy, insurance, childcare, social enterprises, law, market research, charity and the public sector. In 2017/8, we were able to offer nearly 50 placement opportunities to our students and we continue to grow year on year.
Employers for Childcare
What did the placement student do?
The student on placement within our organisation carried out important research including market research on competitors and on how we could develop our services. I feel this was both valuable for the student to gain this insight into business awareness but this was also valuable to our organisation as this research helped to shape the direction our service has taken.
The placement student fitted very well into the organisation and quickly developed good working relationships with other members of staff, even though she was only in twice a week. They spent a considerable amount of time finding out more about the organisation and in particular about our Childcare services.
Why did they get involved?
We decided to accept the placement for several reasons including; gaining access to talented graduate knowledge that would improve our business; giving a student a chance to gain work experience for their CV; showing a graduate what the insurance industry has to offer; giving something back. We enjoyed watching a talented individual grow in confidence weekly, being able to support someone and benefiting from the insight their work produced.
We would 100% recommend other organisations to get involved as we have actionable output to work upon that will massively benefit us as a company in a short period of time at no cost to us as a business beyond a little time spent helping someone else.
Paul Carroll, Placement with Shelter NI
I was warmly welcomed on placement. My mentor was happy to provide feedback and assistance. My role was to create a framework to analyse the organisation’s standard of governance.
The task made perfect use of my statistical skills that I had garnered throughout the first two years of my undergraduate program. I was also able to use my timekeeping, interpersonal and presentation skills on placement. The placement offered me an insight into the demands of an employer, and gave me the opportunity to work in a new sector.
Natalie Laugesen, Placement with Carecall
Carecall provides counselling to employees with problems in their personal life or facing difficulties at work. On placement I used research skills gained in my psychology degree.
I collected data and analysed the effectiveness of counselling on clients’ mental well-being. The project revealed how much I have learned throughout my degree and confirmed my desire to pursue a research career. The best aspect of the placement was to be around a team who were interested in psychological theory and applied it in their profession.