Short Title:Industry Placement
Full Title:Industry Placement
Module Code:HTSC H2030
ECTS credits: 20
NFQ Level:6
Module Delivered in 2 programme(s)
Module Contributor:Rachel Freeman
Module Description:Placements are integral to the preparation of students for the acquisition of a BSc horticulture and career in industry. This 20 credit graded module aims to give students experience of working in a professional environment with an opportunity to consider their suitability for a career in horticulture. Students are expected to become involved in the full range of work activities and gain first-hand experience of business operations. This is an opportunity test and evaluate knowledge and skills acquired, demonstrate competence in an appropriate role, and reflect on their limitations. Placement providers facilitate the development of the students’ professional practice through provision of appropriate opportunities and help in identifying areas for further learning.
Course Extra Information A college placement panel will be set up to approve placements before the student commences the placement work. NB: Industry Placement is graded and included in the GPA calculation
Learning Outcomes:
On successful completion of this module the learner will be able to
  1. Demonstrate commencement of the acquisition of professional horticultural competencies (core skills and techniques) which characterise horticultural practitioners and reflect on knowledge gaps
  2. Identify and categorise the diverse sectoral roles, distinguishing key functions and skill sets of each
  3. Demonstrate and describe professional competent use of a wide range of industry standard equipment, tools, machinery and technologies
  4. Record and apply professional horticultural work practices, in particular health and safety, business operations, facilities, technology, equipment, ethics, and sector specific techniques and skills
  5. Relate to and communicate professionally with co-workers, management and clients; regarding relevant correction and direction from supervisors in a professional manner.
  6. Summarise, appraise and document placement experiences professionally; determining links between horticultural practices and relevant theory

Module Content & Assessment

Indicative Content
Placement Coordinator (Institute)
The Institute provides a discipline specific member of the academic staff to act as 'Placement coordinator’, to supervise and assessing students and to guiding placement providers and supervisors during placement.
Industry Placement Providers
Placement providers are approved by the Institute before the student commences the placement work. Approval takes place based on an established written set of criteria and placement providers are listed on an ‘approved list’ which is updated annually. A range of placement providers are available throughout Ireland and overseas, with new providers welcomed each year. Each placement provider must act as, or put in place a suitably qualified, supervisor to guide students through their placement period. Placement providers are supplied with a handbook, detailing operational guidelines for placement and have the support of the Institutes’ placement coordinator. Placement providers are expected to complete a performance evaluation for each student at the end of the placement period.
Placement operations
Students are prepared for placement during semester 1; Garda vetting, safe pass and manual handling training, CV tailoring, interview preparation, theory to practice guidance, referencing and plagiarism. Following submission of an application to the placement coordinator, and that application meeting the required standard, students are notified of approval to begin placement. Students complete 16 weeks placement in industry, submitting the four required Journals, worth 50% of the marks for the module during this period. During their 16 week placement period, students engage with a further two modules online. Academic support is available to students during this time from the institute’s ‘Placement Coordinator’, both online and in person as deemed necessary by the placement coordinator. A scheduled visit is made to complete the performance evaluation assessment, worth 20% of the marks for the module at an agreed point mid way thought the placement period; more visit may be carried out should issues arise with the placement.
Student engagement
Students are expected to become involved in the full range of work activities carried out by the placement provider to gain practical experience in all aspects of the business. Placement enables development of work methods and discipline, providing students with an opportunity to develop personal skills and attributes, of benefit to their chosen profession and future career. For students who may have already worked in the Horticulture sector, placement will provide them with an opportunity to re-evaluate their practice with the benefit of theoretical knowledge gained on the course. Specifically, this module aims to provide students with the opportunity to participate in the operations of horticultural entity with guidance from a placement provider. In particular experience in the day to day operations, planning, design and development, using industry best practice in a live professional environment, whilst applying theory gained during their programme of study. Giving students, opportunity to refine their working skills by operating alongside professional horticultural practitioners, whilst exposing students to the wide range of career opportunities available on completion of this programme.
Supervision during placement
This is a process that is shared by the institutes’ placement coordinator and the placement provider The placement provider or their designated person should meet regularly with the student during their placement period to ensure the mutually agreed placement goals are being met. This is also the forum to discuss placement progress with a student, and inform them of any issues arising that may affect their progress. During the placement period, the Institute placement coordinator, will visit each student on placement, meeting with the student and the work placement supervisor, individually. This visit is assessed via the academic performance evaluation and the student is awarded a mark; following the assessment the student is informed of any issues arising that may affect their progress. The placement provider or supervisor should contact the Institute placement coordinator, as early as possible in the placement period, if a student is underperforming or experiencing difficulties with their placement. Additional visits will take place if there is a specific problem with the placement. The objectives of placement visits are, to assess students and facilitate the discussion of placement issues in a safe and constructive manner. To identify issues in a timely manner and discuss remedial action. To discuss student work performance, acknowledge progress and give constructive feedback to the student on their performance. Gives student an opportunity to air any possible concerns about the placement and the learning opportunities offered. To obtain feedback from the student on the placement as a learning environment, ensuring that they have sufficient opportunities to gain necessary experience and to establish their competence, to monitor the practice experience offered to them and its fit with their learning needs. To give feedback on the relevance of the academic programmes of the Institute to the industry partner and establish and maintain an ongoing rapport between the Institute and the placement providers.
Placement Assessment
This 20 credit module is graded, impacting on a students GPA. All assessments are based on given briefs and marking schemes.
Indicative Assessment Breakdown%
Course Work Assessment %100.00%
Course Work Assessment %
Assessment Type Assessment Description Outcome addressed % of total Assessment Date
Written Report Application - Students prepare a written application for placement, and are assessed based on a given brief and marking scheme. This includes a letter of application, Curriculum Vitae (indicating Garda vetting status, manual handling and safe pass training), statement of goals for personal and professional development whilst on placement, letter of offer from an employer, student risk assessment and mitigation form and employer registration form. 2,6 10.00 Week 1
Reflective Journal Students complete one monthly online ‘technical and reflective’ journal of placement experiences, per four weeks spent in industry. This journal is based on a given brief with marking scheme, each Journal worth 12.5% (4 x 12.5% = 50%). Journals are a professional record of a students practice whilst on placement with clear links to theory, demonstration of achievement their chosen goals with academic feedback following each submission The journal will include examples of technical information and or observations, information pertaining to plants, facilities, tools, machinery and equipment, experiences, professional written communication, project plans, designs and schedules, specifications 1,2,3,4,5,6 50.00 n/a
Performance Evaluation Performance evaluation (Placement Coordinator) This grade is based on the Placement Coordinators visit report document, and is completed by an academic during a visit to the placement provider and student, both placement provider and student are interviewed (separately) to ascertain a student’s progression and performance. 1,3,5 20.00 Week 8
Performance Evaluation This grade is calculated by the placement coordinator. It is based on the completed and returned Placement provider/supervisor report document, which is completed by the placement provider at the end of the 16 week period. 1,2,3,4,5,6 20.00 Sem 2 End
No Final Exam Assessment %
Indicative Reassessment Requirement
Repeat the module
The assessment of this module is inextricably linked to the delivery. The student must reattend the module in its entirety in order to be reassessed.
Reassessment Description
The student must engage in a further period of placement, as directed by the Head of Department. In addition, the student will be required to submit the series of assessment documents as outlined above .

ITB reserves the right to alter the nature and timings of assessment


Indicative Module Workload & Resources

Indicative Workload: Full Time
Frequency Indicative Average Weekly Learner Workload
Every Week 560.00
Every Week 80.00
Recommended Book Resources
  • Christine Fanthome 2004, Work Placements: A Survival Guide for Students, Palgrave Macmillan [ISBN: 9781403934345]
  • Sally Longson 1999, Making Work Experience Count: 2nd edition: How to Get the Right Work Experience and Improve Your Career Prospects, 2nd Ed Ed. [ISBN: 978185703517]
Supplementary Book Resources
  • Barbara Bassot 2013, The Reflective Journal [ISBN: 978113732471]
Supplementary Article/Paper Resources
Other Resources

Module Delivered in

Programme Code Programme Semester Delivery
BN_SHTSC_8 Bachelor of Science (Honours) in Horticulture [240 ECTS credits] 4 Mandatory
BN_SHTSC_7 Bachelor of Science in Horticulture [180 ECTS credits] 4 Mandatory