Skip to main content


Professional Practice

Module description

This module will enable you to develop skills and behaviours that underpin being a successful Level 4 Investment Operations Specialist Degree Apprentice. The assignments you complete for this module will earn credits for your degree and feed directly into the work you do for your portfolio and End Point Assessment. Through online and in person learning you will get the opportunity to learn about and develop key professional practice skills and behaviours including communication, teamwork, personal development, honesty and integrity, adaptability and enthusiasm. A key part of the module is enabling you to develop your reflective and critical thinking skills so you can identify, evaluate and modify your own behaviours using self-analysis and constructive feedback.  You will also get an insight into where learning originates and translate new knowledge into a comprehensive continuing professional development plan.

Full module specification

Module title:Professional Practice
Module code:BEF1014DA
Module level:1
Academic year:2023/4
Module lecturers:
  • Dr Alison Sydenham - Convenor
Module credit:30
ECTS value:






Duration of module: Duration (weeks) - term 1:

16 weeks

Duration (weeks) - term 2:

16 weeks

Duration (weeks) - term 3:

16 weeks

Module aims

The module aims to equip you to demonstrate skills and behaviours for your Level 4 Investment Operations Specialist Degree Apprenticeship, which include but are not limited to; .

·         Communicating and Influencing (21-23) 

·         Team working and collaboration (24-25) 

·         Personal Development (29-30) 

·         Honesty and Integrity (31-32); 

·         Adaptability (33)

·         Enthusiasm (34-35)

Learning about these skills and behaviours and engaging with a range of content will enable you to produce a case study and a Personal Development Plan, that draws together and evidences personal and professional development. 

ILO: Module-specific skills

  • 1. Self-Awareness: Reflect upon professional practice to identify, evaluate and modify own behaviours using self-analysis and constructive feedback.
  • 2. Professional Development: Evaluate divergent learning and professional development theories, translating new knowledge into a comprehensive continuing professional development plan
  • 3. Communicating and influencing: Discuss the importance of sound interpersonal and influencing skills in building positive relationships with clients and colleagues. Apply coaching and mentoring skills in your professional practice
  • 4. Team working and Collaboration: Apply a suite of professional skills including the ability to work effectively both independently and as part of a team in terms of applying time management skills, active listening and open questioning, in order to foster a supportive and collaborative environment.

ILO: Discipline-specific skills

  • 5. Develop critical arguments both of self and of module-related theories that support and deepen learning.
  • 6. Communicate effectively in verbal and written forms, with internal and external clients

ILO: Personal and key skills

  • 7. Apply reflection to professional practice through an integration of theory, frameworks and models into evaluating and improving behaviours. These behaviours include but are not limited to; adaptability, enthusiasm, honesty and integrity.

Learning activities and teaching methods (given in hours of study time)

Scheduled Learning and Teaching ActivitiesGuided independent studyPlacement / study abroad

Details of learning activities and teaching methods

CategoryHours of study timeDescription
Seminars (Master classes)28Taking place during the synchronous seminars there will be at least 28 hours of taught input (masterclasses)
Online activities and PDP coaching 48Ongoing PDP coaching throughout 48 weeks of module. Working with module tutor, peers and academic mentor.
Applied Professional Development224Guided and independent learning which will be applied to the work context in consultation with a manager from the organisation. It will include a mixture of reading material, self-development exercises, online discussion forums, self-assessments, videos, and 360-degree feedback.

Formative assessment

Form of assessmentSize of the assessment (eg length / duration)ILOs assessedFeedback method
Continuous and embedded within module activitiesEquivalent to 1000-1,500 words 1-7

Summative assessment (% of credit)

CourseworkWritten examsPractical exams

Details of summative assessment

Form of assessment% of creditSize of the assessment (eg length / duration)ILOs assessedFeedback method
1. Case Study453000 words1-7Academic tutor will provide written feedback.
2. Produce a personal development plan (PDP) with evidence of continuous professional development50Equivalent to 3,500 words1,2,5Academic tutor will provide written feedback.
3. Completion of specific weekly ELE activities as outlined on the module ELE page5Equivalent to 1000 words1-7Peer/self - assessment

Details of re-assessment (where required by referral or deferral)

Original form of assessmentForm of re-assessmentILOs re-assessedTimescale for re-assessment
1. As per original45%, equivalent to 3000 words1-76 weeks
2. As per original 50%, equivalent to 3500 words1,2,56 weeks
3. As per original5%, equivalent to 1000 words1-76 weeks

Re-assessment notes

Defer – as first time

Refer – capped at 40%

Syllabus plan

The main outcomes of this module are the Personal Development Plan (PDP) and case study. In order to achieve this, the module is divided into three sections respectively called 'Explore', 'Evolve' and 'Excel', which contain a set of blended learning activities.  During the first section 'Explore' the students will learn the academic and professional development skills to support their progress through the qualifications.  They will also learn the frameworks and tools necessary to develop themselves as a reflective practitioner, identifying where they are starting from and outlining their goals for meeting their potential. Next, the 'Evolve' section focuses on developing the behaviours and skills as stated in the IOS standard. Finally, the third section ‘Excel’ is where the students take off in achieving their goals set out in their Personal Development Plan and polish their assignments ready for submission.


Learning and Teaching:

â?? Self-directed and self-managed research, with support from module lead, academic mentor tutor and a line manager in learner’s organisation.

â?? Formative feedback during the 12-month period of the personal development module (48 weeks in total).

â?? Mentoring support and feedback from a senior colleague/s in the workplace.

â?? Ongoing reflection against self-development plan.

Indicative learning resources - Basic reading

Basic reading:


Cottrell, S. (2015) Skills for success: personal development and employability . Palgrave Macmillan


Day, T. (2018) Success in Academic Writing. Palgrave Study Skills. Palgrave Macmillan


Miller, D. (2015) Brilliant Personal Effectiveness: What to know and say to make an impact at work. Pearson: UK


Supplementary text:


Cottrell, S (2017) Critical Thinking Skills; Developing Effective Analysis, argument and reflection.


Palgrave Macmillan:


Paul, D., Cadle, J., & Thomas, P (2012) The Human Touch: Personal Skills for Professional Success. BCS: UK


Winstanley, D. (2009) Personal Effectiveness. Excel Books: UK

Gatrell, C. (2006). Managing Part-Time Study: A Guide For Undergraduates And Postgraduates: A guide for Undergraduates and Postgraduates. McGraw-Hill Education (UK).

Module has an active ELE page?


Origin date


Last revision date