Strategic purpose statement and graduate profile

Strategic Purpose Statement

The strategic purpose statement reflects the need for the qualification and describes how it “earns its place on the New Zealand Qualifications Framework (NZQF)”

Includes three key elements:

  • the learner group, where this is defined
  • industry or community end users including cultural and social aspirations – where these are reflected in the needs analysis
  • industry or professional standards or requirements that define the scope of practice.

The strategic purpose statement is reflected in the outcomes within the graduate profile.

Graduate Profile

A graduate profile must (be):

  • Comprehensive, describing what a person with this qualification must be able to do, know and be – it describes a whole role or set of capabilities and enables programme design that can be made available to a wide range of learners
  • Sufficiently open to accommodate current and future needs, including technological shifts  – stability and flexibility
  • Balanced appropriately between knowing, being and doing for the level, qualification type and strategic purpose
  • Consider the full range of capabilities the graduates may need:
    • Personal, such as take responsibility, remain calm under pressure
    • Interpersonal, such as work with senior staff effectively, contribute to the team
    • Cognitive, such as set and justify priorities, solve problems
    • Role-specific, such as technical skills
    • Generic, such as organise work and manage time, literacy and numeracy
  • Start with the stem:

The graduate (of this qualification) will be able to:

  • Use plain English to present a complete and easily understood picture for all stakeholders including learners
  • Written so that each statement uses descriptors that reflect the level of the qualification and contain:
    • Verb such as analyse, apply, plan, cost, communicate
    • Subject
    • Context
  • Each statement in the profile will be weighted with an indicative credit value allocation that reflect the balance of capabilities
  • Able to be assessed directly or indirectly through evidence gathered
  • Individually contribute to meeting the needs identified in the strategic purpose statement
  • Incorporate any industry or professional standards, licensing or professional registration requirements, or critical practice/employment elements.

 

This way we are moving away from ‘education-speak’ as our industry love to put it – to clearly stating what it is the graduate will ‘do, be and know’ – but in broader terms

 

Use the following to review graduate profile:

Read it as a whole – does it describe the role referred to in the strategic purpose statement?  Does it map back to the needs analysis?

  • Is it clear what the graduate will actually be able to do when they have completed the qualification?  Are the core activities (functions) they will undertake in their role clear?  Are they described meaningfully without itemising each step?  Consider each of the dimensions again:
    • Personal, such as take responsibility, remain calm under pressure
    • Interpersonal, such as work with senior staff effectively, contribute to the team
    • Cognitive, such as set and justify priorities, solve problems
    • Role-specific, such as technical skills
    • Generic, such as organise work and manage time, literacy and numeracy.
  • What skills will they need to use and knowledge will they need to apply and in what context?
  • What role do they have in a team (where appropriate)?
  • What is the scope of their responsibility as a result of completing the qualification?
  • At what qualification level will graduate have a level of responsibility and what will this look like?
  • What kinds of problems will they have to manage?
  • What responsibility do they have for maintaining safety/the environment?
  • To whom and what are they responsible for communicating?
  • Are there any applied numeracy requirements?
  • Does the graduate profile allow for both current and likely future needs – is it forward looking?
  • Does the graduate profile provide a clear and flexible framework for designing programmes a range of programmes to meet different learner and other needs?
  • Can the graduate profile be clearly attested to through learning, teaching and assessment activities, without being overly restrictive in scope?
  • Can the graduate profile realistically be achieved within the specified credit value?

This document is also available as a PDF download : Strategic purpose statement and graduate profile