Course code: IKF306
Course name: Internship
Location: Bergen (Sandviken)
Academic year: 2021–2022
Credits: 15 ECTS Credits
Single subject: No
Required prerequisite knowledge
Completion of the first semester in the master programme in Development studies, UCU or in Intercultural studies, NLA.
For ICS students, NLA: IKF 301 intercultural theories (20 ECTS) and IKF 302 Methodology (10 ECTS)
For DEV students, UCU: minimum 1 semester of the master programme, including:
Year I: Module: 1
Foundations of Development
Basic concepts in development
Gender and Development
Recommended prerequisite knowledge
Thorough knowledge about the organization, development projects and country of the internship.
For ICS students there is included a preparatory course of 5 hours on campus before the internship
Relevance within study programme
Elective course in the master programme in Intercultural studies
Elective course in the master programme in Development studies.
Learning outcomes descriptors
The student has
- In depth knowledge of professional etiquette and culture
- in depth knowledge on how to research the background, mission and activities of an organization one has newly joined
The student has
- skills to understand how theoretical knowledge can be used in practice.
- developed skills for working independently as well as in team with others
- developed capacity to handle complex academic issues and challenge established knowledge and practice in the field.
- Ability to reflect over and assess his/her own practices and accomplishments
The student has
- ability to make professional commitments and adhere to them
- ability to enhance one's own professional competency based on reflection over self-assessed and mentor-assessed performance.
The primary function of the internship is for students to be exposed to new and relevant –real– development work and development issues/environments. The internship in the Stromme Foundation East Africa or another institution or NGO approved for this purpose by UCU and/or NLA enables students to acquire work life experiences and skills in how to apply theoretical knowledge and help students adapt their abilities and interests with requirements in particular fields. The aim is also to contribute to the effectiveness of the hosting Host organization through high quality work as well as bringing new perspectives and approaches.
Through internship students practice their skills and knowledge in an intercultural environment committed for capacity building among marginalized people. Students get opportunity for relevant work experience, to build a professional network and gets input and inspiration for the master´s thesis. Thus besides appreciating the practical aspects of the internship; students are expected to refine their research questions and commence subsequent thesis preparation.
Internships may be in governmental host organization, think tanks, non-profits, or for-profit organizations and where possible international organizations. The organizations should be reputable and with a clear focus on research that informs policy processes.
Once conditions of the internship have been agreed upon and the student has been approved by the host organization for internship: the student, academic advisor, host organization supervisor and the internship coordinator must co-sign the Letter of Agreement form. The intern then provides a signed copy of the form to each of the signatories. This letter is not a contract, but is meant to ensure consistency in the expectations of all parties: the student, the academic advisor, the internship coordinator, and the host organization supervisor are consistent.
Teaching and learning methods
Placements must be approved by each student–s academic advisor or internship coordinator.
Student activities in internship include:
Shadowing agency supervisor
Participate in daily work in internship institution as if employee
Special task(s) of interest for NGO (research/evaluation)
Internship Practice report
When ever possible, one student from UCU and one student from NLA do internship together. The exchange of experiences between the two students will enhance professional competency and intercultural training for both parties, and enrich reflections and self-assessments .
Internship should bridge theory and practice enabling students to test classroom knowledge and skills in a work environment: it has specific academic goals which must be met.
The student, in consultation with the academic advisor and host organization representatives should identify specific tasks to be accomplished which are subsequently detailed in the Letter of Agreement. An intern should behave like a regular employee with a special, temporary work assignment. As such, the intern is expected to meet at least the same standards of performance as other employees of the host organisation.
An internship should not be presumed to lead to a permanent position in the host organization.
Good working relations with supervisors and associates will facilitate the intern–s work.
The intern should keep daily notes to assist in preparation of the final internship report.
Regular informal reports to the academic advisor shall help keep the intern on track for a satisfactory final report, and shall also enable the intern to tap the academic advisor's knowledge and experience.
The students in Bergen will also have the opportunity to participate in workshops/seminars on academic writing together with the students on IKF 304, 305 and 306.
Ca 450 hours, including preparation and assignment.
The duration of the internship in the workplace is exactly one and a half months (six weeks). Should the placement offer an opportunity for students to collect data for respective theses; then the internship may be extended to a maximum period of three and a half months (fourteen weeks).
Placements must be approved by each student–s academic advisor or internship coordinator. Student must adhere to the letter of agreement and participate in daily work in institution as if an employee during praxis period.
UCU students are expected to write the `proceedings– of their internship experience to Internship journal weekly. The journalt should be posted on the faculty blog ucusocialsciences.wordpress.com
NLA students are expected to share their experience in a lecture or a blog at NLA.no.
Grading, coursework requirements
Approved / Not approved
A written practice report or portfolio must be delivered by the end of the internship semester, approx. 6000 words paper. The written assignment can also be a portfolio consisting of the written practice report, and the special assignment by the internship organization
The practice report should be discussing all learning outcomes including the self-established outcomes, including a description of the organization, goals/purpose of the position, tasks, resources, etc. and a specific description and refection on the work that has been done during the internship position and critical reflection about the experience in the light of current research and curriculum for the study programme. The report should outline accomplishments and reasons for any variances from initial expectations as well as lessons learnt that are relevant to the programme as well as the student–s career interests. It should also cover implications of the experience for thesis preparation and make suggestions for future placements. The assignment may also include methods and activities used to master the learning outcome of the course/the general program, and analysis of development project reports and interviews with the project team.
The agency supervisor in the hosting organization and the supervisor at UCU should also hand in an evaluation form to the coordinator.
Permitted aids under examination
All aids permitted.
Pass / Fail
English. The student can apply for using other languages.
Cf. the UCU internship manual and Letter of Agreement for details.
Student evaluations during and after the course.
Evaluation by advisors.
Norwegian students should be aware that living and working in a developing country and/or in subtropics/tropic region requires good mental and physical health and due preparation in terms of medical prophylaxis. Cf. the UCU internship manual and guidelines for details on sick leave etc.
Available for Course Students
Reading list and academic resources
No compulsory syllabus.