Using Insights Discovery to supercharge work integrated-learning

Psychometric test

Since September 2019, SAIT Bachelor of Business Administration students choosing the practicum option in their last year use Insights Discovery to maximize the learning experience. Through a psychometric test based on Jungian psychology, they’ll learn more about their own style, how to work as part of a team and lead others. The test uses a color-coded model to represent different personality preferences and traits, providing a common language for emotional intelligence — for example, people who are cool blue tend to value precision, accuracy and expertise.

“Professional careers are not a multiple-choice test — students are going to have to learn how to navigate that ambiguity and uncertainty,” says Gursher Pannu, Academic Chair, Management and HR Business. “At SAIT, we’ve built a reputation for applied education over the past 100-plus years teaching technical skills. This initiative is part of the integration of essential skills into the curriculum.”

Insights offer guidance for self-discovery

Pannu describes the Insights Discovery process as a foundation for students to see themselves on paper and see themselves come to life. “We want students to discover who they are and how they create value as a person within an organization and for themselves.”

After they’ve completed questions covering a range of answers from ‘most like me’ to ‘least like me’ with shades of preference between, students participate in a full-day workshop.

In the morning they explore the results, figuring out who they are and where their personality falls in the different categories: cool blue, earth green, sunshine yellow or fiery red.

“The information in the tool is easy to understand and to apply,” says Charissa Lee, School of Business instructor. “One of the things our students often say is that they knew their personality, but this process is so confirming, it's almost as if we interviewed their best friend or parents to figure them out as an individual.”

Chart for a career’s trajectory

Through the evaluation, students gain a better idea of their own strengths and after a personalized coaching session, they go into practicum with a sense of their desired career trajectory and how to find success.

“We help them understand their communication preferences and how they engage with people in the workplace,” says Lee. “And importantly for working on a new team, what brings about conflict and how to work through it using some of the knowledge gained through Insights Discovery.”

Support and guidance from instructors, as well as regular check-ins to analyze what is working and what could be better, are a critical part of the learning journey and help to maximize the real-world practice.

“Insights Discovery provides students with a valuable roadmap for success during their practicum, which paves the way to landing a great position after graduation,” says Pannu.

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