Sa-SYM-330-3 - Applied Class Projects With External Clients In Master's Level Education.

Emerging themes in I/O psychology
1 hour
O'Connor Theatre
Emerging themes in I/O psychology
Applied class projects with external clients in Master's level education.
M. Hein*
Main Abstract Content: In the last twenty-six years I have supervised thirty-three graduate class projects with external clients including government entities, for profit companies and nonprofit organizations. I generally cover the content of the class in the first half of the semester and then spend the second half of the semester supervising their application of what I have taught them.
Advantages: In addition to applying what they have been taught, students learn about proposal writing, budgeting, communication, client management, teamwork, and project management. Students finish with products they can show potential employers, contacts within a specific company and a client project to put on their resume. Students also have an opportunity to cross-train each other on specific skills.
Challenges: Some of the challenges that have arisen include scope creep, micro-management by the client, level of autonomy to give the students, project resistance by members of the organization and the restricted timeline of doing a project in six to seven weeks.
Best practices: Some best practices learned over the years include: A written proposal signed by the client, vetting the clients ahead of time, establishing communication protocols, kick-off meetings and requiring final presentations as well as written reports. The proposal includes a timeline, deliverables and specifies the support needed from the client for successful completion of the project. There is also an estimated budget for the project if it were conducted as a consulting project instead of a class project and a request to consider donating to the program enrichment fund if they are pleased with the results of the project. Flexibility in assignment of grades is a plus.

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