Enhanced possibilities for better employment

Today’s Higher Education poses incoming students with one of the biggest individual challenges they will face. University education demands and develops creativity, initiative, application and develops powers of leadership. Financial investment in this education places considerable demands on students and their families. Universities must be clear about the return on this investment. The School of Humanities offers not a certainty of employment but enhanced possibilities for better employment

An education for a changing world

WorldAt the heart of one of Scotland’s leading Universities, the School of Humanities provides excellence in teaching, research and student support.  All our degree programmes have research components of recognised “world class” and “international status”. The School relates many of its taught programmes to the demands of the contemporary world. We are aware that employers are now seeking graduates with a good grasp of contemporary national and international affairs and the ability to communicate across cultures. Employers demand more than a good degree. They want to recruit students able to operate in rapidly changing social and economic environments. To succeed and to lead in this world, students must acquire detailed discipline content and develop the ability to negotiate their way through territory where conventional knowledge boundaries quickly alter. An education for a changing world demands the skill to think flexibly across disciplines, to note what they value and to challenge what they do not question. The School of Humanities shapes it curriculum so that students acquire skills that can help in meeting and adapting to these demands with ease and confidence.

Experiment and reach beyond the boundaries of the comfortable

LightbulbThe School’s inter-disciplinary structure offers students who read for a single-subject degree the opportunity of enhancing their specialism. In our eight module single honours programme (years three and four), two modules can be taken outside the home discipline. To widen individual expertise, for example, a philosophy or history student wanting to specialise in political thought is able to take in the politics programme a module in political  theory. This strengthens specialist study by enabling students to bring that something extra to their home discipline. It shows an employer that a candidate can experiment and reach beyond the boundaries of the comfortable and the expected. For the student who wishes to keep open options between disciplines, the School offers a suite of joint subject degrees some of which are renowned for producing graduates of the highest calibre. Wide ranging international study exchanges are also promoted across the School so that students can strengthen their studies and their career opportunities at an International level.

Prepare for a role in the professional world

‌Whatever the pathway a student chooses, the prospective graduate must prepare for their role in the professional world. Major employers want graduates who can address in a creative and innovative way, the world each profession must respond to. All School programmes present modules with a contemporary edge. New elective  modules will address the “Impact of the Image on Modern Culture”, “The Written Word and the Digital Revolution”, “Drugs Security and Terrorism”, “The Challenge of Religion”, “The Impact of Gender on Contemporary Thought”, and “History and the Modern Media.” No matter the degree pathway chosen, the School offers not just the chance of a prestigious first class degree but the possibility of acquiring those enhanced qualities demanded by employers. Our School cares deeply for students and the challenges they face. We do not promise employment but we guarantee that employers will take the added skills the School offers its graduates very seriously indeed. Help us take you that little bit further.

Academic Travel and Exchanges  

TravelThe Dundee campus is increasingly internationalised with many new voices and perspectives being brought to our lectures and seminars. Employers are also wanting to employ students who have some experience of studying-abroad. Foreign Travel and study is an ancient tradition which has its roots in Medieval University practice and Ancient Greek Festivals. Learning what others do and how they do it allows constructive and critical insight into our thinking and practices. This understanding is what makes the travelled scholar valuable to employers: the ability to shed customary frameworks and to think in new ways. The School encourages its students to take advantage of the various exchange schemes available and recommends that exchanges take place in Level 2 and 3 We have extensive Erasmus Exchange Agreements with universities in Holland, France, Germany, Italy, the Czech Republic, Turkey, Spain and Portugal. It is important to plan early for these exchanges. Don’t think that languages might present an obstacle. Many European Universities now deliver their programmes in English. To help you decide the most advantageous institute for you, contact our Erasmus Officer, Marion Sporing at m.m.g.sporing@dundee.ac.uk

The School has an increasing number of high-quality undergraduate and post-graduate Exchange Programmes in the US. They offer new learning experiences and a superb opportunity to visit North America and perhaps even lay the basis for your post-graduation career.  

Work Placements          

In your third year of study, especially in the vacations of that year, the School recommends that you think very carefully about a work placement with a major employer whether it be the House of Commons, an international publishing house, an art gallery, an investment house, a museum or the Palace of Holyrood. The University has an excellent record of high level placements many of which have led to employment. Details of the work placement scheme can be obtained from the University Careers Service, who would be delighted to assist you, at the Careers website.

Employability Modules 

Important documentsThe Careers Service offers two Employability modules to students in their second year, a Career Planning module and an Internship module. These modules are designed to assist in the preparation of CVs, in making budget plans, and drawing up business proposals for prospective employers. The modules are proving very popular and have attracted considerable interest from employers nationwide. The University allows a student to put the credits from these modules towards their Honours degree. The modules also attract a University Certificate, which is proving a worthwhile advantage in employment interviews. For further information about this module, please visit the Careers Service website.

Formative Skills and the Employment Market  

StudentsThe purpose of studying at University is to improve intellectual skills and achieve new levels of understanding and analytic capacity. Quite rightly, you will be asked to specialise in your chosen discipline and to develop the academic (formative) skills that are most appropriate to it. We tend to think of these skills as being mainly academic virtues: the ability to weigh up different bodies of evidence and come to a reasoned judgement, the skill of listening acutely to opinions other than your own and formulating their content and implications, and the ability to work alone responsibly over long periods of time and yet meet required deadlines. There are other academic virtues that you will acquire. It is most important to remember that these skills, especially those concerning flexible and adaptive responses to new material or challenges, are highly valued by employers. They help in meeting the challenges of research with academic or commercial and give evidence of a potential employee being able to work independently and creatively in unusual and unexpected circumstances. These virtues have an employability value as well as enabling you to acquire qualities of a good academic. Academic study is not just a matter of performing well in the world of ivory towers. It also concerns the acquisition of skills appropriate to a fulfilling and creative career. One of the roles of your discipline tutor will be to develop with you your sense of the connection between your academic studies and your post-graduation intentions. It is important that you start discussions over these matters as soon as you join us.

Studying for a degree at the University of Dundee, is not just about obtaining a degree. It is also about seizing those opportunities which will enhance your potential for high level employment. Whether it be using supplementary modules to strengthen a single subject-degree, taking a joint-subject degree, learning a new language or studying abroad, forming new networks or life-shaping friendships, plan ahead and be open to all the opportunities available to you. The School has a Careers Officer and the University has a very professional Careers Unit. Both will guide you towards the most appropriate plan for your future. The School exists not only to offer you a transformative educational experience but to help you secure added value to your employment opportunities. Help us help you!