The Cooperative Education Model
Cooperative Education (Co-op) is a distinctive form of experiential education in which students alternate periods of academic study with periods of paid work experience.
Students at Northeastern University with majors in biology and biochemistry may earn experiential education credit when they successfully complete the following components of the Cooperative education learning model:
- Preparation: Students are required to actively participate in structured activities through group and/or individual interactions with Cooperative Education Faculty Coordinators who help the student develop skills that are intended to help them be successful in their co-op positions: goal setting, decision-making, self-assessment, and career exploration. The preparation phase concludes with an Individualized Learning Agreement that meets the student’s personal and professional goals.
- Activity: Cooperative Education Faculty Coordinators provide guidance and oversight to students during job searches. Acceptance of all work positions are approved by Co-op Faculty and all positions must meet the goals of the student’s Individualized Learning Agreement.
- Reflection: Reflection is a critical component of the Co-op experience at Northeastern University. Cooperative Education Faculty Coordinators guide students to identify activities and experiences in which they have participated and to reflect upon what they have accomplished, how accomplishments connect to undergraduate studies, and how the activities or experience has added to their intellectual growth. Co-op activities may include: conversations with supervisors, faculty conferences, employer performance evaluation, de-briefing sessions with Co-op Faculty Coordinators, oral/slide presentations, and group projects.