Work-integrated learning for TVET lecturers: Articulating industry and college practices
South Africa’s policy frameworks for technical and vocational education and training (TVET) and adult and continuing education and training (ACET) lecturers require that the work-integrated learning (WIL) element of programmes include WIL in appropriate ‘industry settings’ to ensure that TVET lecturers develop expertise in both teaching their subjects and preparing their students for the demands of the workplace. Whereas the country’s education faculties have a strongly developed practice of school-based WIL, none currently offers a formal programme that includes WIL in industry. International literature on teacher placement in industry thus largely concerns the in-service placement of practising educators to develop and update their industry knowledge and experience. In South Africa, some institutions have embarked on projects that have developed
knowledge of industry WIL for TVET college lecturers, one of these being the SSACI-EDTP SETA WIL for Lecturers Project, through which more than 400 college lecturers have completed a work placement, conducted between 2014 and 2017. It provides a significant amount of information on the possible nature and implementation of the industry-based WIL component of the lecturer qualifications currently being developed. Using the Shulman and Shulman (2004) framework on teacher learning, this article analyses the project. It seeks to deepen the understanding of the nature of lecturer learning through WIL and also to contribute to the national, African and broader international discourse on the placement in industry of vocational educators and articulation between the worlds of work and education.