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Title: Internships before and during COVID-19: experiences and perceptions of undergraduate interns and supervisors
Authors: Teng, Cecilia Woon Chien 
Lim, Raymond Boon Tar 
Chow, Dana Wai Shin 
Narayanasamy, Suganthi 
Liow, Chee Hsiang 
Lee, Jeannette Jen-Mai 
Keywords: COVID-19
Public health
Remote internship
Supervisor perception
Issue Date: 24-Sep-2021
Publisher: Emerald Group Holdings Ltd.
Citation: Teng, Cecilia Woon Chien, Lim, Raymond Boon Tar, Chow, Dana Wai Shin, Narayanasamy, Suganthi, Liow, Chee Hsiang, Lee, Jeannette Jen-Mai (2021-09-24). Internships before and during COVID-19: experiences and perceptions of undergraduate interns and supervisors. Higher Education, Skills and Work-based Learning. ScholarBank@NUS Repository.
Rights: Attribution 4.0 International
Abstract: Purpose: The COVID-19 pandemic has brought about a contingent shift to remote working and learning worldwide. However, little is known regarding the impact of this shift on internships. Moreover, much of the available literature studies on internships are focused largely on perceptions by students, less so by supervisors. This paper describes the impact of COVID-19 on public health (PH) internships and examines interns' and supervisors' perspectives on their experiences in internships before and during the pandemic. Design/methodology/approach: A cross-sectional study design was conducted on two cohorts of undergraduate students and their supervisors in Singapore. Participants were surveyed using questionnaires with both close-ended and open-ended questions about various aspects of the internship experience. Data were triangulated from these surveys and module evaluation reports, and analyzed quantitatively and qualitatively. Findings: COVID-19 disrupted internships significantly, with a reduction in the number of placements offered and necessary changes to the internship scope. Overall, the internship experience has been positive. Supervisors and e-interns reported high levels of satisfaction and documented learning gains such as the development of technical skills and soft skills unique to remote work. Originality/value: The study findings fill current gaps in the literature on supervisor perceptions and internship experiences during COVID-19. Recommendations are proposed to optimize e-internships, a potentially authentic workplace in the post-COVID era. © 2021, Cecilia Woon Chien Teng, Raymond Boon Tar Lim, Dana Wai Shin Chow, Suganthi Narayanasamy, Chee Hsiang Liow and Jeannette Jen-Mai Lee.
Source Title: Higher Education, Skills and Work-based Learning
ISSN: 2042-3896
DOI: 10.1108/heswbl-05-2021-0104
Rights: Attribution 4.0 International
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