SayPro Form of the Contract

There are many forms which the contract can take but the following represents a general example:

Student name and details

This is pretty obvious

Course name and level

So is this, but the course level is important, because that sets the expectations of the piece of work: the level criteria should be set out clearly somewhere—perhaps in the handbook.

Outcomes to be addressed

They may not be expressed as outcomes, but this is where the student puts the course requirements about the piece of work.

Form of submission

It could be a project, a portfolio, a video of practice, an object the student has made, a computer program … If the tutor signs the form, she is agreeing that a submission of this type will be acceptable.

Outline of submission

This is the crunchy bit: this is where the student sets out her intentions for the submission. Much of the rest of the form may be governed by course regulations, but this has to be original. It is a statement of the student’s solution to the problem, “How am I going to produce evidence that I can meet these outcomes?”

Resources and assistance

So far, the contract has been one-sided. This is where the student can request input from the tutor, such as looking over a draft, or providing copies of some material not in the library, or an introduction to an interviewee.

This section is also the place to clarify complicating issues, such as collaborative work in a small group, and how marks are to be apportioned.

Signatures

These are what make the magic work: the contract is not worth anything until it has been agreed and signed by both student and tutor. Usually the student keeps the main copy to submit with the completed work, but the tutor can keep one on file for security purposes if necessary.

The tutor’s signature makes explicit the implicit bargain above. She is agreeing that if the student delivers what is promised, credit will be awarded.

Practically, then, the contract allows for considerable variation in the form of submission, and clarifies in advance such thorny problems as collaborative working and how much help the student can expect from the tutor. At the level of principle, however, it changes the student from being merely reactive, in the sense of responding to set demands to produce a 4,000-word assignment on this or that, to being proactive in taking the initiative in proposing work to meet the requirements.

Reflection

A learner may need assistance and support when managing their learning experience from the beginning to the end. This support help the learner to make informed decision with regards to:

  • Learning programme content

o Structure

o Admission requirements

o Exit level outcomes

o Learning contracts

o Approaches to learning and assessment

  • Career progression options within the occupation, and
  • Typical learning or personal difficulties experienced by learners. These may include, writing difficulty, motor difficulties, a difficulty performing mathematical calculations or concentration difficulties with heightened activity levels and impulsiveness, emotional behaviour or even social communication difficulties.

Can you clearly define and explain the following concepts with examples? Revisit areas which you experienced difficulties before moving to the next section.

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