The Waterloo Centre for the Advancement of Co-operative Education (WatCACE), with the support of a grant from the Ontario Human Capital Research and Innovation Fund (OHCRIF), conducted research to investigate the indicators, influencers, and outcomes of quality work term experiences for co-op students. This led to the development of the supervisor toolkit, a resource for employers to help with the onboarding and supporting of co-op students over the work term. The resources included in this package target the key findings from the research.
Download the supervisor toolkit (PDF) or view each section down below. Have any thoughts or suggestions? Contact us at firstname.lastname@example.org to share your feedback and experience with the supervisor toolkit.
PHASE ONE: Onboarding
Research indicates that the onboarding process is a critical phase in helping students learn about the organization and their role. It is important they understand how their role contributes to the team and the organization.
PHASE TWO: Beginning of term
Early in the term, it's very useful for students to set objectives for the term. It's most valuable when objectives are set through collaboration with their supervisor and/or colleagues.
- Work term objectives (PDF)
Many supervisors and students report the value of identifying a special project which will contribute to the organization and/or the objectives the student has set. Ideally these projects can be done relatively independently and provide the student with meaningful work to do when they are finished with their regular tasks or when they are waiting for information from colleagues who may not be available.
- Special projects (PDF)
PHASE THREE: Middle of term
Depending on their work term level and program, students may have to complete a work term report.
- Work term reports (PDF)
Performance feedback is very important to students. If feedback is provided during the work term, it is particularly valuable because it gives the students the opportunity to adjust to the employers' expectations in areas noted as needing development.
- Mid-term evaluation (PDF)
PHASE FOUR: End of term
It is very important for students to get feedback on their performance from their employers. The final evaluation must be completed by the student's supervisor and submitted online in order to receive credit for their work term. Additional details are available on the Hire Waterloo web page.
- Final evaluation (PDF)
Many employers report finding great value in collecting feedback from co-op students through exit interviews. This information can be used to shape the roles for future co-op students to increase the value of experience for students and their organizations.
- Exit interview (PDF)