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Sabina's Design Narrative

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Sabina Crouch
28 March 2013


Introducing Co-operatives


I was asked to design a one off workshop to introduce the co-operative business model to students and give them ideas for setting up their small co-operative


The session took place in an FE classroom with a group of BTEC Business studies students. They had no prior knowledge of co-operatives


I was trying to give an overview of the co-operative business model and the current national and international context. I needed to give students enough information to both compare co-operatives with other business models and also to set up a very simple co-operative as part of their course. In addition this would form part of a pilot for a proposed undergraduate career development workshop about co-operatives


  • Collated information about co-operatives and grouped them around the following themes
    • History
    • Structure
    • Values & principles
    • Difference from PLCs
    • National & international picture
    • The Co-operative Group Structure
    • Things to think about when setting up a co-operative
  • Edited content to fit time available – at this stage it was apparent that there was a lot of material that could not be covered so I identified key points and created and sourced additional resources that could be taken away by students to provide more information
  • Sourced and created a number of interactive activities for students to reinforce learning
  • Created a presentation with key points



The session was successful with students feeling enthusiastic about thinking about how they could form a small co-operative and understanding the business mode. I was happy with the level of interaction of the students. As I suspected the timing was tight and I needed to drop a ‘setting up a co-operative’ activity from the end of the session. However the class’s usual tutor committed to deliver it in their next session


My main learn was around timing as already outlined. It definitely gave me a good foundation for building the undergraduate activity outlined above and a sense of what students may really need to know for a more vocationally focussed less ‘academic’ employability session


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