After successfully rebranding Norwich University of the Arts ‘employability skills matrix initiative’ as PROFILE, NUA commissioned us to create a suite of materials to deliver it.
In order to give the students something in time for this year’s graduation ceremony, we devised a PROFILE card game which was given to each student upon graduation. Gamification is now an increasingly popular way to engage an audience and we thought it was a great way for NUA to capture a student’s imagination and help them remember and understand PROFILE’s ten important employability ‘soft skills’.
As for people’s reaction to the game, we couldn’t have wished for more positive feedback. The NUA community love the look of the cards and playing the game. Everyone who has seen the cards immediately wants to play with them and use them in different ways. When the cards are dealt, the mood around the table becomes one of creativity and fun. This met our challenge to overcome the idea that employability teaching is dull and boring.
The success of PROFILE has had a wide reach, being discussed with the Digital Creative Industries group of the New Anglia Local Enterprise Partnership, as well as being picked up by Accelerate East, a new initiative which unites the Higher Education Institutions across East Anglia. It has also come to the attention of a cross-party group of MPs from the region which is why PROFILE was recently presented at the Accelerate East meeting in Westminster. Here, plans were made to develop other versions for different user groups from primary school-age children to mature employees. Further afield, it has been used by the NUA’s International Office for a British Council visit to illustrate NUA’s approach to employability.
And PROFILE has already reached outside of education. It is to be tested by a team at Aviva who are working on the creative disruption of the Aviva workforce and we will be working closely with NUA to help with the delivery of that.
More recently, we created the PROFILE digital web-app helping students document and rate their soft skills online.
PROFILE has attracted significant interest over the last year and has been featured in many publications, such as the EDP.
We are delighted that in 2019 PROFILE won the prestigious Guardian University Awards.