What is Cooperative Work Experience Education?
Cooperative Work Experience Education is a method of instruction that uses the cooperative efforts of school and community to help students develop an occupational understanding by actually working on a job and coordinating that work with the student's school program.It is an educational program that recognizes the learning that takes place on the job and awards college credit for the knowledge and skills gained.
The program consists of a one-hour weekly lecture and five to twenty hours per week on the job. If their job is related to their school major, a student may be qualified to enroll in occupational work experience and may receive up to four units per semester, depending on the number of hours worked. If a student's job is not related to their school major, they may be qualified to enroll in general work experience (three units per semester). If they do not have a job, but are looking for one, they may still be qualified to enroll. In either case, please refer to the Qualifications for Enrollment.
Advantages to the Student
Enrollment in the program allows the student to receive college credit for on-the-job experiences. The program enhances classroom instruction by providing a realistic medium for application of that instruction. In some circumstances, credit is granted for voluntary work. One such example is Community Services Laboratory (Sociology 50), which requires volunteer service only. An additional advantage is that it provides a relatively impartial advisor (the instructor), to help students work through and solve job-related problems.
General Work Experience Education: A student can earn three (3) units per semester for a maximum of two (2) semesters during their enrollment at RCC.
Occupational Work Experience Education: A student can earn up to four (4) units per semester for a maximum of four (4) semesters during their enrollment at RCC.
The following formula will be used to determine the number of units to be awarded:
- Each 75 hours of paid work equals one semester credit.
- Each 60 hours of non-paid work equals one semester credit.
Note: A student may not enroll in both general and occupational work experience concurrently and may not earn more than a cumulative total of 16 units in work experience during their enrollment at any community college.