Dual Education: what is it and how it works

Dual education requires coordination between educational institutions and businesses, both assessing student learning.  The theoretical framework is taught in the...
9 January 2024

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Dual Education: what is it and how it works

Dual education requires coordination between educational institutions and businesses, both assessing student learning. 

The theoretical framework is taught in the educational center, while practical experience occurs in a real company, providing students with effective workplace learning. 

It’s not just about applying knowledge in an organization; it’s also about enriching education by immersing students in the business environment, making the company an active agent in their educational experience.

What is Dual education?

Dual education is a unique educational model that intertwines classroom instruction with hands-on experience in a workplace setting. 

It offers students the opportunity to apply theoretical knowledge directly to real-world scenarios, fostering a holistic understanding of their chosen field.

Formación dual: qué es y en qué consiste

In a rapidly evolving job market, the demand for skilled and job-ready individuals is higher than ever. Dual education addresses this need by producing graduates with a blend of academic expertise and practical skills, making them highly desirable to employers.

For example, dual education opportunities are prevalent in industries such as manufacturing, technology, healthcare, and hospitality. However, the availability of programs may vary depending on regional and industry-specific factors.

Is dual education the same as an apprenticeship?

No, while both involve practical training, dual education encompasses a broader learning by doing educational approach, combining classroom learning with on-the-job training. Apprenticeships typically focus more on hands-on experience within a specific trade.

How does dual education work?

Dual education combines theoretical education in educational centers with practical experience in a company. Unlike conventional internships, it requires dual evaluation and close collaboration between the training center and the company. Successful coordination is crucial to practically complete the curriculum content. 

This is how it works:

  • Classroom Learning: Traditional classroom settings provide the foundational knowledge necessary for a particular profession. Dual education incorporates theoretical learning to ensure students have a comprehensive understanding of the subject matter.
  • On-the-Job Training: The hallmark of dual education is on-the-job training, where students actively participate in real work environments. This hands-on experience is invaluable, allowing students to hone their skills, adapt to workplace dynamics, and build a network within their industry.
  • Balancing Theory and Practice: The challenge lies in finding the delicate balance between theory and practice. Effective dual education programs seamlessly integrate classroom learning with practical application, offering a well-rounded educational experience.

Key Roles in Dual Education

To monitor the student, both the educational center and the company must appoint a tutor.

Center Tutor’s Role

The center tutor acts as a major driver of the project. They are responsible for drafting the project, including the proposed timeline, objectives, etc., and conducting relevant supervision and evaluations. 

It’s crucial for them to understand the business landscape to propose fruitful collaborations, contacting and convincing companies of the project’s benefits.


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Company Tutor’s Role

The company tutor is equally crucial for the final outcome of this type of education, as well as its proper integration within the organization. They coordinate with the educational center to align the student’s experience with curricular needs. The company tutor plans the intern’s training and emphasizes the importance of such policies to other collaborators. 

Adapting onboarding processes to student reception is a useful tool.

Advantages of Dual Education

The 3 agents involved in dual training obtain benefits from the experience. This fact makes us classify the benefits according to each of them.

For the Educational Center

Dual education allows diversification of the educational center’s offerings, attracting new students and enhancing its prestige. Successful projects boost confidence among other students, strengthening the teacher-student relationship and keeping educators updated on business realities.

For the Company

Participation in shaping future workers underscores the company’s societal relevance. It helps identify young talent, potentially reducing recruitment costs. Interns, familiarized with the company culture, can become excellent brand ambassadors.

Key Roles in dual education

For the Student

Dual education enables students to experience the real work world, gaining technical skills and interpersonal abilities. It aids in determining suitable skills for resumes and aligning studies with expectations, contributing to a reduction in early school dropout rates.

Dual Education vs. Traditional Education

Dual education and traditional education have distinct approaches. While traditional education focuses on theoretical learning, dual education emphasizes practical skills, creating a well-rounded education that aligns with industry needs.

Choosing between dual and traditional education depends on individual preferences and career goals. Understanding the differences and assessing personal learning styles helps prospective students make informed decisions about their educational paths.

Recognizing the value of both approaches, some educational institutions are integrating elements of dual education into traditional curricula. Striking the right balance allows students to benefit from both theoretical knowledge and hands-on experience.

Advantages of Dual Education

Future Trends in Dual Education

The future of dual education lies in embracing technological advancements. Integrating cutting-edge technologies into curricula enhances the relevance of education, ensuring that graduates are well-prepared for the demands of evolving industries.

As the world becomes increasingly interconnected, dual education programs are exploring opportunities for global collaboration. Partnerships between educational institutions and industries on an international scale provide students with diverse experiences and perspectives.

Staying attuned to evolving industry demands is essential for the continued success of dual education. Adapting curricula to meet the changing needs of industries ensures that graduates remain relevant and valuable in an ever-changing job market.

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