Work-integrated learning: A game-based learning activity that enhances student employability

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Enhancing student employability is a key aspect of any chemistry-based degree; however, embedding such activities in the curriculum is often challenging. Placements (internships in the USA) or experiential visits are the most widely used approach, but these are not always inclusive. Work-integrated learning (WIL), the practice of combining traditional academic study or formal learning with student exposure to the world-of-work, is widely seen as an alternative approach to provide key employability skills. Our study utilizes a game-based learning activity based on the TV show The Apprentice to conduct WIL. Working in teams, students evaluated the performance of two different chromatography analytical columns and are asked to generate various marketing materials to highlight the performance of one column over the other. This included creating an infomercial and marketing flyer before finally pitching their findings to an expert panel. This activity provided a creative platform for students to showcase a range of employability skills, which they reflected upon immediately afterward and a year after graduating. Students indicated that the real-life work-based content of this specific activity significantly enhanced their employability and helped them secure a job. This educational WIL can be modified for any discipline of chemistry, providing a unique and inclusive way to provide a vast array of skills to enhance employability.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)888–895
Number of pages8
JournalJournal of Chemical Education
Issue number3
Publication statusPublished - 6 Jan 2021


  • Analytical Chemistry
  • Gamification
  • Work Integrated Learning
  • employability
  • Humor/Puzzles/Games
  • Second-Year Undergraduate
  • Collaborative/Cooperative Learning
  • Chromatography


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