ERIC Number: ED312455
Record Type: RIE
Publication Date: 1989
Reference Count: N/A
Cooperative Education: Characteristics and Effectiveness. ERIC Digest No. 91.
Cooperative education can enhance classroom instruction by providing practical work experience that is relevant to students' career goals. Among co-op's benefits to students are increased relevance of learning and motivation for study; improved self-reliance, self-confidence, and responsibility; contacts with potential employers; and higher starting salary after graduation. Among the benefits to participating institutions are improved relationships with business and the community; enhanced student retention and graduate placement; workplace-tested curriculum; and less need to maintain expensive state-of-the-art facilities. Among the benefits to employers are effective screening and recruitment; higher employee retention and productivity; and improved public relations. Co-op education appears to work best in metropolitan settings, in community colleges, and for students who major in engineering, business, and health occupations. However, fewer than 2 percent of all full-time postsecondary students and no more than 10 percent of all secondary vocational education students are involved in co-op programs. Some research on the effects of co-op education has been criticized for methodological weaknesses. Among the suggestions for increasing co-op's impact are to recruit larger numbers of the students most likely to benefit from it and to promote co-op as a viable alternative to heavy borrowing for college expenses. (Eleven references are included.) (CML)
Descriptors: Cooperative Education, Cooperative Programs, Education Work Relationship, Educational Benefits, Educational Cooperation, Experiential Learning, Field Experience Programs, Instructor Coordinators, Outcomes of Education, Postsecondary Education, Program Effectiveness, Relevance (Education), School Business Relationship, Secondary Education, Vocational Education, Work Experience Programs
Publication Type: ERIC Publications; ERIC Digests in Full Text
Education Level: N/A
Sponsor: Office of Educational Research and Improvement (ED), Washington, DC.
Authoring Institution: ERIC Clearinghouse on Adult, Career, and Vocational Education, Columbus, OH.