Faculty Evaluation and Coaching Department
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Connecting Learning to Professional Goals

1. Have students work in groups to brainstorm concrete and realistic activities they can do to explore the course concepts more deeply or extensively and/or practice skills they have developed.

Possible topics include:

  • Researching a company they'd like to work for in the future. 
  • Helping a friend design a business card. 
  • Teaching a younger sister to use a soft- ware program. 
  • Arranging a visit/informational interview at a post-production house, advertising agency, or design studio.

2. Have students make action plans with realistic goals for breaks. Some ideas include a visit to a post-production house or Fashion Mart; a short meeting with someone they met during a field trip. Students may watch a movie with innovative editing techniques, or read a book that was recommended by the teacher.

3. Ask students to write a vision statement that answers the question: What do you want to be doing in five years? Encourage concrete details. For example, What is the first thing you do when you get to work? Who are you working with? Where is your office?

4. To promote reflection on learning, have students work together in small groups (2 - 4 members) to discuss the question: What have I learned from participating in class activities and doing assignments for this course? Refer students back to the course syllabus (e.g., learning outcomes, week-by-week breakdown) to jog their memories about all they have done.

Categories for discussion might include:

  • New concepts and ideas 
  • New skills (e.g., technical, interpersonal) 
  • Improved skills 
  • New or renewed interests

Groups record ideas (lists, idea map, etc.) on a large piece of paper. When groups are finished, post lists on the wall. Ask students to take a tour of the posters and put a check mark next to items on other lists that apply to them as well. Survey the results, identifying the most common responses, as well as any unusual or unexpected results.


Silberman, M. Active Learning: 101 Strategies to Teach Any Subject. Boston: Allyn and Bacon, 1996.