Starting the Field Study

The team held two meetings to discuss the Field Study process prior to meeting the client for the first time.  During this meeting, the students were exposed to the “Critical Skills” and to the findings of the SCANS commission for the first time.  Additionally, the Field Study process was explained and discussed along with each step from the initial client meeting through the final report presentation.  The team also prepared questions to ask the Medical Clinic Administrator at the Wheaton Medical Clinic during their first meeting.

In general, before beginning a Field Study, a team meeting should be held consisting of the team members and the faculty supervisor.

The agenda for this meeting should be to discuss the purpose of the Field Study in some detail – its purpose focused not on becoming experts in any field, but to engage in the Field Study process of problem solving.  The “Critical Skills” and their application to the world of work should be discussed.

Each phase of the Field Study process should be discussed – its purpose what is expected of the students, and the need for keeping the project on track.  The students should be encouraged to read the example of a Field Study as shown in this website/blog and consider it to be a model toward which their work should be directed.

The students should be briefed about meeting their ‘educational partner’ on the premises of the business, and be encouraged to ask questions about the history of the business, the scope of services provided, the issues they are expected to address, and the customers who will be interviewed.  This meeting should result in a clear understanding of expectations by everyone and in scheduling the initial client meeting.