Employer and alumni engagement

This page focuses on the element ‘employer and alumni engagement’. It provides a description of the element, highlights its relevance, and provides examples of employer and alumni engagement in the curriculum.


Diverse and regular involvement with employers and alumni – not solely as guest speakers or providers of placements but also to help inform the curriculum, get involved with student assessment, provide case studies and project ideas, to act as mentors etc.

Note: ‘Employer’ is a catch-all term for external organisations or individuals with an interest in the University and in supporting the development of its talent.  They may also recruit our students and graduates.

Relevance to student development, employability and careers

Allowing employers and alumni to inform the curriculum can provide insights into what knowledge and skills students may be expected to display when they move into work.  Employers and alumni can provide valuable insights into career options and can enhance students’ professional networks, while highlighting or sharing current trends/challenges across their sector.

Tips and things to consider

Below you will find some key tips and guidance to consider when involving employers and alumni in your curriculum. 


Examples of practice in the University of Edinburgh

There is diverse practice across the University that can be used to stimulate thinking about what is possible in your setting. 

Below is a link to a range of relevant practice from the Teaching Matters blog.  The examples come from multiple parts of the student experience and relate either partially or substantially to this element.  New articles are automatically added so check back in the future to discover some of the latest practice.

Teaching Matters: relevant articles


Further reading and external perspectives

The references below provide some background on this element as well as some of the external drivers and motivations for including it. 


These references highlight how industry and government are keen to facilitate more active engagement between employers and higher education.  By using employers, the curriculum can be shaped to prepare students for life after graduation as well as foster relevant skills.  Moreover, having employers or alumni help shape the curriculum or provide placements or guest lectures can broaden a student’s network as well as develop valuable skills and attributes.