Work Integrated Learning (Placement) - Procedures - University of the Sunshine Coast, Queensland, Australia

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Work Integrated Learning (Placement) - Procedures

Definitions

Please refer to the University’s Glossary of Terms for policies and procedures. Terms and definitions identified below are specific to these procedures and are critical to its effectiveness:

Blue Card refers to a card which is issued in Queensland to a person who is the holder of a current “positive notice”, following a Working with Children assessment of a person’s eligibility to work with Children based on their known past police and disciplinary information.

Blue Card Services is a section within the Queensland Department of Justice and Attorney-General that undertakes Working with Children checks and issues Blue Cards.

Child/Children refers to any person under the age of 18 years.

Placement immerses a student in a workplace related to their program, discipline or career goals. A placement applies class-based learning to structured and supported workplace activities and provides opportunities for students to reflect on their learning and be provided with timely feedback on their performance. Examples include: internships, practicums, clinical placements, work shadowing, or supervised professional experience.

Placement Academic Supervisor is the University staff member who has responsibility for conducting and monitoring the assessment of the student’s academic performance and compliance with the Student Placement Code of Conduct while completing the placement for a program or course. In some disciplines the roles of placement coordinator and Placement Academic Supervisor may be combined.

Placement Coordinator is the University staff member who has responsibility for coordinating placement activities for a school, discipline, program or course.

Placement Details Agreement is and electronic form capturing required information, including personal student information for the placement, and students’ rights and responsibilities while on placement.

Placement Disclosure Statement is an electronic form to capture and identify risks to a student health and safety and to assess reasonable adjustments for WIL activities

Placement Partner is the entity in which the student is placed to complete their placement. For clarification, in some cases, this may be a work area of USC.

Placement Workplace Supervisor is the person within the placement partner who supervises the student while completing their placement.

Sonia system is the recognised official repository for University records in relation to placements.

Student Placement Agreement is an electronic form consisting of the placement disclosure statement and placement details agreement which are intended to be separately enforceable.

Student Placement Code of Conduct is a discipline specific code of conduct, or a set of guidelines for professional conduct, or another suitable instrument, which is informed by the professional standards or code of conduct for the relevant profession.

USC – Placement Partner Agreement is the formal agreement between the University and the placement partner.

Vulnerable Person/People refers to any individual aged 18 years and above who is, or may be, unable to take care of themselves against harm or exploitation by reason of age, illness, trauma or disability, or any other reason.

Yellow card refers to card which is issued in Queensland to a person who has undergone a criminal history screening for eligibility to work with a Department of Communities, Disability Services and Seniors funded non-government service provider or a National Disability Insurance Scheme (NDIS) non-government service provider.

Purpose of procedures

These procedures apply to the workplace and industry category of work integrated learning (WIL) as defined above.

Heads of School may delegate a range of tasks to other suitably qualified academic and professional staff members, however overall responsibility for the wellbeing and academic performance of students on placement rests with the Head of School.

1. Specific criteria for a placement

1.1 Placements must satisfy all the following criteria:

(a) the course/activity is a requirement of or an identified option in a program;

(b) the course/activity is normally undertaken in an organisation (the placement partner) outside the University, however some placements may be arranged through specialised USC work areas;

(c) the learning and performance of the student in the course/activity is directed or supported by the University or persons engaged by the University;

(d) the placement undertaken by the student with the placement partner involves the use of the appropriate level of skills and knowledge relevant to the program;

(e) the placement is in a safe work environment, determined by the completion of a University risk assessment; and

(f) the requirements of the relevant professional accrediting body (if relevant).

1.2 Courses that contain placements that satisfy the criteria identified above, require the WIL placement course status to be approved by Academic Board. Normally, this would form part of the accreditation documentation for the program in which the courses are offered.

2. Design of programs containing placement courses

2.1 Programs containing placement courses:

(a) identify workplace tasks which derive from and are underpinned by academic theory with defined linkages to the knowledge and skills as required by the industry/profession;

(b) establish that the tasks/activities to be undertaken by the student are productive and meaningful and have defined benefit to the student and the workplace;

(c) involve contact hours that are appropriate for the unit value of the course or for the percentage value allocated to the task;

(d) link the assessment to the academic theory and measurable workplace learning outcomes; and

(e) provide an opportunity for the student to reflect on the work integrated learning and its relationship to other elements of a program’s curriculum.

2.2 Program and course design

2.2.1 Programs containing courses which involve placements must be structured to provide scaffolding of the student exposure to the profession/discipline, from initial observation to active involvement during the final placement. The program should provide the student with an early opportunity to assess their ability to complete the program by reviewing the inherent academic requirements.

2.2.2 The program’s curriculum should be designed so that the requisite skills deemed appropriate for the placement are assessed prior to the student undertaking a placement activity.

2.2.3 The learning outcomes of the program should ensure that a student has a sound knowledge of the relevant discipline’s student placement code of conduct and can apply it to their work practices.

3. Assessment of placement courses

3.1 Use of limited grades

Courses that contain placement activities normally use Limited Grades – Pass (PU) and Fail (UF). Refer to Section 3.7 of the Assessment: Courses and Coursework Programs – Procedures for details of the conditions concerning Limited Grades. (See also section 3.5 of these procedures) about assessment and the Student Placement Code of Conduct). A course that contains a placement activity that seeks to use standard grading requires the approval of the Chair, Program and Course Committee.

3.2 Conduct of assessment

3.2.1 Assessment should be conducted by the Placement Academic Supervisor, or in conjunction with the Placement Workplace Supervisor, where appropriate. Assessment should not be made by the Placement Workplace Supervisor alone. Disciplines offering the placement course should ensure the Placement Workplace Supervisor is conversant with the criteria and standards expected by the University.

3.2.2 The Placement Academic Supervisor, in conjunction with the Placement Workplace Supervisor where appropriate, assesses the student’s performance against the Student Placement Code of Conduct.

3.3 Timing of feedback on assessment

The Placement Workplace Supervisor should provide developmental feedback and/or conduct regular feedback sessions with a student throughout the placement, particularly in the early stages. If a student’s performance regarding professional conduct is found to be unsatisfactory, then the Placement Academic Supervisor is to be notified as soon as possible. In placement courses, assessment feedback is timed to allow the student an appropriate period in which to improve their performance and should normally be provided by the mid-point of the placement.

3.4 Unit values of placement courses

3.4.1 The unit value attached to placement courses should be established through consideration of:

  • the learning outcomes to be achieved during the placement;
  • the length of time of the placement; and
  • the amount and type of assessment required within the placement course.

Refer to the University’s Coursework Curriculum Design - Procedures.

3.5 Student Placement Code of Conduct and reasonable direction

3.5.1 The Student Placement Code of Conduct must be provided to the student, prior to commencing the placement. Students are assessed for compliance with the Student Placement Code of Conduct which is the basis of the mandatory pass/fail task identified in the assessment section in the course’s Course Outline document.

3.5.2 In addition to the University’s Placement Code of Conduct, students will be subject to the lawful policies and procedures, and reasonable direction of the placement partner while at the placement partner’s workplace.

3.6 Progression in the program

3.6.1 A student who receives a fail grade in an identified placement course is subject to specific requirements with regards to maintaining satisfactory academic progress in their studies, which are identified in the University’s Monitoring Academic Progress and Exclusion – Academic Policy and related procedures.

3.6.2 Students who have failed a clinical placement course, have taken a break from their study of two or more consecutive semesters, and or have transferred from another university with credit for a preparation for practice course into their program of study with the University may, at the discretion of the relevant Head of School, be required to undertake an additional module of study prior to being permitted to attend a clinical placement. This study will formalise reintroduction to theory and supported practice, allow the University to assess the practical skills of the student and ensure that relevant support can be provided to the students so they can proceed to placement and meet relevant professional standards relating to practice in their field of study.

4. Establishing a placement

The following steps must be completed but can be undertaken concurrently rather than sequentially depending on the situation and the time available.

4.1 Site visit to placement partner

4.1.1 If a placement partner does not have the required policies, procedures, and arrangements in place, then before a formal arrangement is established with a placement partner, the placement coordinator should, where possible, visit the site of the proposed placement activity to ensure that:

  • the expectations and responsibilities of each party are clearly identified and agreed upon;
  • all risks associated with the proposed placement are identified and minimised; and
  • the Placement Partner can provide the student with an experience that is in keeping with the learning outcomes of the placement course.

4.1.2 The placement coordinator may decide not to conduct a site visit if satisfied that the placement partner has appropriate policies and procedures relating to health and safety, risk mitigation and formalised orientation activities for new staff members.

4.1.3 If a site visit is not practicable, then such options as a visit by a third party, references, or evidence of undertaking placement activities with other institutions should be used.

4.2 Topics to discuss with a placement partner

The placement coordinator’s discussions with the placement partner should cover such topics as:

  • risk assessment, covering both general hazards and those specific to the placement locations;
  • duration of the activity;
  • expectations of student performance including program inherent academic requirements and course learning outcomes;
  • number of students that can be accommodated;
  • assumed level of knowledge of the students;
  • costs;
  • student induction activities;
  • supervision arrangement;
  • insurance;
  • intellectual property;
  • supervisor training;
  • specific technical requirements;
  • liaison person;
  • dispute resolution processes;
  • USC support options for students on placement;
  • incident reporting systems and procedures (including reporting to USC and arranging post-incident support);
  • whether the placement will involve working with children or vulnerable people; and
  • students who require reasonable adjustments.
4.3 Workplace health and safety risk assessment

4.3.1 Following completion of the site visit (or equivalent), the details of the proposed placement are entered into the Sonia system by the placement coordinator and a risk assessment is produced. This assessment must be made of the placement partner in advance of the actual placement of students (and rechecked at the point of placement). If the assessment determines the host is suitable and appropriate, the placement coordinator arranges for the relationship to be formalised through a USC – Placement Partner Agreement. If the assessment indicates that the placement partner is not appropriate, the placement coordinator should discuss the outcome with their Head of School to determine what actions should be taken. For further details, refer to the University’s Enterprise Risk Management - Governing Policy.

4.3.2 At the point of placement, two processes are required to be completed:

(a) the site assessment is reviewed to determine if any factors have changed from when the site was assessed, and

(b) a student assessment, which covers location specific risks, communication plans etc. – situations that are often outside of the control of the host – but still are risks for the student that the University must consider. The student assessment links the risk to specific students and/or student cohorts.

4.3.3 The requirements to regularly review the risk assessment of a placement partner is dependent on the workplace health and safety documentation and processes of the placement partner. Refer to Table 1 for details of the categories of placement partners.

Table 1
Category Description Period of Risk Assessment
Category 1 Federal/State Government departments e.g. Queensland Health, state schools, internal work areas of USC, for example, the USC Nutrition and Dietetics Clinic etc. Based on: already well-established workplace health and safety policy and procedures; and Workplace health and safety policy review unlikely to happen regularly. Up to 5 years
Category 2 Large private organisations/companies, Local Government and non-government organisations– e.g. private schools, private health services etc. Based on: already well-established workplace health and safety policy and procedures; and policy review more likely to happen regularly or be updated based on changes to organisations/staffing. Up to 3 years
Category 3 Small private organisations/companies, sole traders. Based on: not always well-established workplace health and safety policy and procedures; and more likely for these procedures to change/be modified more regularly. Annual

4.3.4 In the case of a student undertaking a placement activity in a remote environment, a full risk assessment must be completed prior to approval. The risk assessment will be conducted in accordance with the Fieldwork Activity - Operational Procedure.

4.3.5 In the case of a student undertaking a placement activity in an overseas location, all approval and planning must be in accordance with Annexe A Short-Term Mobility Activity.

4.4 Work health and safety

Minimum standards to comply with the University’s work health and safety requirements for risk management include:

  • the completion of a risk assessment for the industry/professional workplace (refer to Section 4.3);
  • the student must be provided with access to the risk assessment statement relating to their Placement;
  • orientation of the student to the workplace and advice of the identified hazards; and
  • accurate record keeping.
4.5 The USC – Placement Partner Agreement

4.5.1 The development of a USC – Placement Partner Agreement or equivalent document is the responsibility of the placement coordinator. If one of the University’s standard templates is being used then the relevant Head of School can sign on behalf of the University, otherwise, the Deputy Vice-Chancellor (Academic) must sign the agreement. An appropriate industry/professional representative with the required delegated authority must sign on behalf of the placement partner.

4.5.2 Where the University’s standard template is not used; the agreement must ensure that the following have been clearly identified:

  • the expectations and responsibilities of each party;
  • the agreed placement activities;
  • the timeframe for the placement activities and an indication of the number of students to be involved;
  • all risks associated with the proposed placement activities;
  • the life of the agreement and a review process;
  • any financial implications for the partner, the University or the student; and
  • that the activities to be undertaken during the placement provide the student with an experience that is in keeping with the learning outcomes of the placement course or component.

4.5.3 The signed USC – Placement Partner Agreement must be included in the central host repository in Sonia system. In some circumstances, the contents of a USC – Placement Partner Agreement may be covered by several documents, all of which must be included in Sonia system.

4.6 Intellectual Property

4.6.1 With respect to intellectual property, all placement activities must be undertaken in accordance with the University’s Intellectual Property – Governing Policy.

4.7 Insurance

4.7.1 The University’s Student personal accident, public liability and professional indemnity insurance identifies five conditions for indemnifying persons on a placement:

(a) the person must be a student as defined by the University;

(b) a risk assessment has been undertaken and mitigation established;

(c) the student has informed the University of any disabilities, health conditions, illnesses or other factors the student believes could impact on the student’s ability to fulfil the requirements of the placement (which is included in the risk assessment);

(d) the placement must be sanctioned by the University;

(e) the student must not be a paid employee of the placement partner (refer to Section 6.4).

4.7.2 As a default position, the University only provides travel insurance coverage for a student undertaking an international placement. The availability of other forms of insurance coverage is dependent on the outcome of the risk assessment undertaken for the placement partner site. Based on the outcome of the risk assessment the insurance coverage identified in the USC - Placement Partner Agreement for an international placement can be expanded with the endorsement of the University’s insurance office and the approval of the Deputy Vice-Chancellor (Academic).

4.8 Contact with placement partners

The placement coordinator ensures that written guidelines regarding the management of the relationship with the placement partner are developed and made available to the placement partner on request.

4.8.1 Pre-placement

On both parties signing the USC – Placement Partner Agreement, the placement coordinator makes available to the placement partner the following:

  • program/course requirement information (e.g. Course Outline, supervisor manual);
  • the workplace health and safety assessment statement;
  • opportunity for the Placement Workplace Supervisor(s) to undertake a training program or provide training materials;
  • the remuneration arrangements (if agreed);
  • information advising of the University’s insurance and workplace Health and Safety policies. (Refer to the University’s student personal accident, public liability and professional indemnity insurances.)

4.8.2 Prior to the placement commencing the placement coordinator or the Placement Academic Supervisor must check with the placement partner that the details contained in the workplace health and safety assessment remain current and the placement coordinator has included any information relating to individual students identified in the disclosure statement (part of the Student Placement Agreement).

4.8.3 Placement

The following information is provided to the placement partner by either the placement coordinator or the Placement Academic Supervisor at the commencement of the placement:

  • a list of students undertaking their placement, including their names, contact details and other information required by the placement partner and agreed to by the student;
  • the agreed commencement and conclusion dates for the placement;
  • information relating to the assessment process and criteria relating to the placement; and
  • the contact details of the University staff member who is coordinating the placement.
4.9 Overseas placements

4.9.1 An overseas placement must be assessed as identified in Section 4.1 above. The placement coordinator must also ensure that:

  • there is alignment between the international placement and the intention and learning outcomes of the program/course outline;
  • a budget has been allocated for a site visit (if required) and appropriate supervision;
  • a review has been undertaken of the location regarding any professional accreditation requirements;
  • a University contact is available for the student throughout the placement;
  • travel warnings for the placement location have been checked prior to the student’s departure; and
  • a formal communication plan has been developed and is stored in an appropriate records management system.

4.9.2 A student seeking to undertake an overseas placement may initially be required to attend an interview with the relevant placement coordinator.

4.9.3 Each School maintains through Sonia system a register of its students undertaking placement activities overseas.

5. Students and placements

5.1 Preparedness for the placement

Any student who has concerns about their preparedness for the placement must discuss the situation with the Program Coordinator. There is the option for a Leave of Absence as outlined in the Enrolments and Graduation – Procedures.

5.2 Provision of information on placement requirements to students

5.2.1 Inherent academic requirements

Inherent academic requirements for a program with compulsory placement courses should be identified in publicly available information to enable students to make informed decisions about meeting the inherent requirements of the program.

5.2.2 Mandatory Requirements

Mandatory requirements for a student to undertake a placement must be identified in publicly available information about the program related to the relevant program. Depending on the program these requirements may include but not limited to: a current first aid and Cardiopulmonary Resuscitation (CPR) certificate, evidence of specified immunisations, statutory declaration, a driver’s licence, a National Criminal History Check, or a Blue Card or Yellow Card (as outlined below). Detailed information is provided to students on commencement in the program. A record of a student’s compliance with mandatory requirements is maintained through SONIA.

5.2.3 International students are advised of the mandatory requirements as part of their offer package.

5.2.4 Students who may have to work with children as part of their placement must obtain a Blue Card before they begin their placement (or other equivalent working with children check, if the Placement is not in Queensland). This requirement is set out as a mandatory requirement in the program information for all relevant programs at the University or may also be determined as a result of a risk assessment undertaken by the University in consultation with the placement partner.

5.2.5 There may be occasions where students are required to undertake a placement in a setting that provides health and/or disability support services to Vulnerable People where a Yellow Card (or an equivalent criminal history check) is required. In general, students who have a Blue Card will be able to apply for an exemption for those situations.

5.2.6 The University has processes in place for managing students who receive a negative notice from Blue Card Services, or equivalent. This would typically involve transferring students to an academic program where a Blue Card is not a mandatory requirement. For further details, refer to the University’s Working with Vulnerable People - Governing Policy.

5.2.7 A student must maintain currency with the mandatory requirements for the duration of the placement and must notify the placement coordinator or Placement Academic Supervisor of an inability to maintain that currency. The student is responsible for any fees or charges incurred in meeting the mandatory requirements.

5.2.8 A student undertaking a placement must complete mandatory requirements of both USC and the host organisation by the discipline specific deadline. Students with outstanding mandatory requirements after this deadline will not be able to commence a placement in the study period and the student's enrolment in the course will be withdrawn and the appropriate grade/notation allocated, depending upon the date and circumstances, in accordance with the Grades and Grade Point Average (GPA) – Academic Policy.

5.2.9 For clinical placements, mandatory requirements are due ten (10) weeks prior to commencement of the placement.

5.3 Allocation of student to placements

5.3.1 Disciplines must establish processes for the allocation of students to placement organisations that are transparent, fair and reasonable. Disciplines must provide a timely process for a student to request a reallocation on the grounds of exceptional circumstances or reasonable adjustment. Where the student remains dissatisfied with the allocation, they may seek a review of the placement decision, in accordance with the University’s Student Grievance Resolution – Governing Policy and associated procedures.

5.3.2 Normally, compulsory placements are established within a reasonable distance of a student’s campus. Where the availability of a suitable placement may require the student to travel or to undertake the activity at remote, rural, regional or interstate locations, this information (and any costs to the student) must be advertised to prospective students and any ancillary costs are the student’s responsibilities.

5.4 Students requiring reasonable adjustment

5.4.1 The University makes reasonable adjustments to ensure equitable treatment, the nature of adjustments may be informed by the inherent academic requirements for the program.

5.4.2 An adjustment is a measure or action taken to assist a student to participate on the same basis as other students. An adjustment is defined as reasonable if it achieves this purpose and does not compromise the academic integrity of the program, while balancing the interests of all parties affected, including the student, the University and its staff, the placement partner and its staff, and other students.

5.4.3 A student requiring reasonable adjustment in a placement may require additional processes and consultation with the prospective placement partner. A student who is requesting that reasonable adjustment be made is encouraged to discuss this with AccessAbility and the Program Coordinator or Placement Academic Supervisor well in advance of the placement.

5.4.4 Before participating in placement activities, as a requirement of the University’s risk assessment process, a student is required to disclose any personal information about disabilities, health conditions, illnesses or other factors that could impact on the student’s ability to fulfil the requirements of the placement or put at risk themselves or others during the placement. A student is encouraged to discuss their situation with AccessAbility Services in Student Services and Engagement and seek reasonable adjustment.

5.5 The Student Placement Agreement

5.5.1 The Student Placement Agreement must be signed by the student before the commencement of the placement.

5.5.2 The Deputy Vice-Chancellor (Academic) approves a standard Student Placement Agreement consisting of the following documents which form the entire Agreement:

1.Placement Disclosure Statement; and

2.Placement Details Agreement.

5.5.3 The Placement Disclosure Statement must include:

  • the personal details of the student (including emergency contact and any personal information which may be relevant in assessing the suitability and participation of the student in a placement);
  • any personal information about disabilities, health conditions, illnesses or other factors that are likely to impact on the student’s ability to fulfil the requirements of the placement or put at risk themselves or others during the placement; and
  • program and course details.

5.5.4 The Placement Details Agreement must include:

  • the personal details of the student (if they have changed since completing the Placement Disclosure Statement);
  • details of the placement (dates, contact persons and times (if available);
  • travel management plan; and
  • confidentiality statement and student responsibility declaration.

5.5.5 Each discipline determines the appropriate time period of the Student Placement Agreement. In cases of a student undertaking multiple activities, the Student Placement Agreement might be for the length of a course or a set period during a program. In normal circumstances, such an agreement would not be expected to be for a period longer than an academic year.

5.5.6 The personal information that a student provides as part of the Student Placement Agreement or that the University otherwise collects or holds about the student will be used and disclosed by the University for purposes necessary or relevant to the placement including but not limited to administration, placement suitability and risk assessment processes, background checks, accreditation purposes, compliance purposes or for any other requirement associated with the student’s suitability and participation in a placement. As a placement involves the student being placed with a placement partner, the above purposes involve the disclosure of personal information to the placement partner. By signing the Student Placement Agreement, students consent to the collection, use and disclosure of their personal information in this manner by the University.

5.5.7 Students are also required to disclose changes in their personal circumstances and medical status through the Disclosure Statement – Variation form. In signing the Student Placement Agreement, students acknowledge their obligation to make these disclosures on an ongoing basis.

5.6 Disclosure information

5.6.1 Information disclosed by a student on the Placement Disclosure Statement will be reviewed by AccessAbility Services

5.6.2 It is essential that the placement team communicate any specific placement site requirements or procedures to AccessAbility Services. This may include Workplace Health and Safety and other regulations that may limit the implementation of reasonable academic adjustments.

5.6.3 Where there is a mandatory requirement for all students undertaking a Placement with an identified Placement Partner to complete a medical assessment, the format and content of the form and the medical professional required to make the assessment is normally determined by the Placement Partner. This process sits outside the Disclosure review.

5.6.4 Additional supporting information relating to pre-existing health condition disclosures, including a Health Practitioner Report, can be requested from the student by AccessAbility Services to verify the need for reasonable adjustments and suitability for Placement with respect to inherent academic requirements and relevant risk factors.

5.6.5 On receiving the supporting information, the AccessAbility Services Team will review to determine if suggested adjustments would enable the student to demonstrate the inherent academic requirements for the placement.

5.6.6 Disclosures of factors other than pre-existing conditions will be referred by AccessAbility Services to Student Wellbeing for review.

5.6.7 Additional supporting information relating to other disclosures can be requested from the student by Student Wellbeing to assist in determining reasonable adjustments and suitability for Placement with respect to inherent academic requirements.

5.6.8 On receiving the supporting information, Student Wellbeing will review the information to determine if the student can undertake placement and provide recommendations to AccessAbility Services on reasonable adjustments or other options.

5.6.9 Once the AccessAbility or/and Student Wellbeing assessments are complete, AccessAbility Services will make an overall recommendation. There are three (3) possible outcomes:

1.the student can proceed to placement with no adjustment to the placement process;

2.the student is able to proceed to Placement with reasonable adjustments;

3.the student is unable to proceed to Placement without Head of School review.

5.6.10 AccessAbility Services will provide the recommendation to the relevant placement coordinator via the Sonia system.

5.6.11 A meeting between the placement team and the student may be organised to facilitate the reasonable adjustments and site disclosure, a representative from AccessAbility Services may be invited to attend the meeting.

5.6.12 Where the recommendation is that a student is unable to proceed to placement, the relevant placement coordinator will review the recommendation, add any further applicable information and will escalate the matter to the Head of School.

5.6.13 The Head of School will review the completed Placement Disclosure Statement and other relevant information and determine one or more of the following courses of action:

  • the student is permitted to undertake the placement with or without additional conditions
  • the student is not be permitted to undertake the placement at this time;
  • the placement will be delayed (this may impact on progression) until a satisfactory medical assessment has been obtained;
  • the student is supported in a request for Leave of Absence;
  • the student’s enrolment will be interrupted for required medical leave or other grounds, in accordance with Section 9 of the Enrolment and Graduation – Procedures; or
  • A meeting will be organised with the student to discuss alternative options if progression in the current degree is not possible.

5.6.14 If the Head of School determines the student requires further medical assessment, the Head of School or their delegate will request this information from the student.

5.6.15 Once the medical information is received, it will be reviewed by the placement coordinator in consultation with AccessAbility Services, and a recommendation made to the Head of School. In granting a student a medical clearance to continue with their Placement, the Head of School can include conditions for the student to maintain the medical clearance.

5.6.16 In a case where the student failed to gain a satisfactory medical assessment, the Head of School will determine an outcome as per clause 5.6.12.

5.6.17 It is typically the student’s responsibility to fund medical and non-medical assessment processes.

5.7 Disclosure Variation

5.7.1 If a student’s medical or non-medical circumstances changes, they must complete a Disclosure Statement Variation form.

5.7.2 The variation disclosure will be reviewed as per the process in 5.6 Disclosure Management.

5.7.3 If the disclosure results in a disruption of placement this may result in an impact on progression.

5.8 Placement Partner Medical Clearance

5.8.1 When a medical clearance is requested by a Placement partner, this falls outside of the above noted procedures. It is the student’s responsibility to liaise with the placement team, who may consult with AccessAbility Services, as necessary, before the Head of School makes a determination on the student’s return to placement.

5.9 Record keeping

All communications regarding the grounds for the medical assessment, the University’s Medical Assessment Form (or other medical assessment document) and the actions in response to the medical assessment should be stored in Sonia system.

6. Undertaking a placement

6.1 Placement database

All placements are recorded in Sonia system. Nominated staff members from each discipline area update the Sonia system and act as the contact point for enquiries from staff and students.

6.2 Pre-placement information

Immediately prior to a student commencing their placement, the discipline provides pre-placement information to the student, which should include the following:

  • a Preplace (placement preparation program) course (or equivalent);
  • Student Placement Code of Conduct;
  • details of the required assessment;
  • health and safety issues, including procedures if an accident or injury occurs on placement; and
  • details of insurance cover.
6.3 Conflict of interest

6.3.1 A student should avoid undertaking a placement in a workplace where there is a possible or perceived conflict of interest, for example, where:

  • a family member or someone with a close personal relationship is responsible for supervising the student;
  • the student might be responsible for teaching or assessing a family member;
  • the student is in paid employment with the placement partner, unless the placement involves paid employment with the placement partner as part of an early employment scheme approved by the University.

6.3.2 A student must inform their placement supervisor(s) if such a situation arises and the conflict should be resolved by the relevant Head of School in consultation with the Placement Academic Supervisor and the Placement Workplace Supervisor.

6.4 Employee of the placement partner

6.4.1 In exceptional circumstances, where a student is given permission by the Deputy Vice-chancellor (Academic) to undertake a placement where they are in paid employment with the placement partner, then the following safeguards are required:

  • the student must have a different supervisor to the one for their paid employment;
  • the tasks/project should be different for those undertaken in their paid employment; and
  • the placement must be undertaken on different days to the paid employment unless there are compelling reasons to consider the same days.

6.4.2 If these conditions cannot be met to the satisfaction of the discipline and the relevant Head of School, the placement will not proceed.

6.4.3 In the case where the student remains in paid employment while undertaking the placement, a USC - Placement Partner Agreement reflecting the student is undertaking a paid placement is required and approved by both the University and the placement partner.

6.4.4 Section 6.4.1 does not apply where the student is completing a prescribed placement while in paid employment with the placement partner where the placement is part of an early employment scheme approved by the University.

6.5 Academic supervision of students on placement

6.5.1 The Placement Academic Supervisor monitors the continuing viability of the placement. The frequency and mode of the monitoring should be appropriate for the discipline and the Placement. In some instances, this involves a visit to the placement site when a student is undertaking a placement, while in other instances contact with the placement partner and student by email, telephone or videoconference is appropriate.

6.5.2 Records of all interactions between the Placement Academic Supervisor and the student during the period of their placement should be captured in Sonia system.

7. Issue raised during placement

7.1 As a general rule, should any impediment, problems or concerns arise, at any stage before or during the placement with respect to or concerning the placement, the relevant party must notify the other party without delay to attempt in good faith to resolve any such problems expediently.

7.2 All issue resolution must follow appropriate University policies and procedures, including, for example, the Anti-Discrimination and Freedom from Bullying and Harassment (Students) – Procedures.

7.3 If a concern or issue is raised by either the student or placement partner involved in a placement, the following process should be followed:

(a) in the first instance, the issue should be discussed and documented by both the student and the placement partner to determine a resolution;

(b) if the matter is not resolved, the appropriate University representative meets with the student and host to discuss the issue to determine a suitable resolution; and

(c) if a satisfactory resolution cannot be reached, the Placement Academic Supervisor or authorised person should remove the student from the placement and refer the matter to the relevant Head of School.

8. Serious breach of requirements

8.1 In the event of any breach by a student of a rule, regulation or policy of the placement partner, or of the University’s placement Code of Conduct, the placement partner will inform the University representative as soon as possible of the details of the breach.

8.2 If the placement partner considers on reasonable grounds that any conduct of a student at its workplace is sufficiently serious or that the student is not suitable to undertake or to continue the placement, the placement partner will give notice of the conduct to the University representative and may request that the student be excluded from the placement partner’s workplace, either temporarily or indefinitely.

8.3 Upon receipt of a notification the University will direct the student not to return to the placement partner’s Workplace until otherwise advised.

9. Failure in a placement course

9.1 For unresolved issues or serious breach, t Placement Academic Supervisor or authorised representative must complete a report and present this to the Head of School detailing the evidence of the student’s actions or academic performance.

9.2 On receiving the report, the Head of School will decide whether to:

(a) fail the student in the assessment task and consequently fail the course (condition of a course using the Limited Grades option); or

(b) allow the student to continue in the placement course.

9.3 If the decision is to fail the student in the course before the end of the teaching period, the Head of School is required to notify the following:

  • The student;
  • The placement partner; and
  • Student Services and Engagement.

9.4 If this is the student’s first failure in the placement course, the Head of School can request the Director, Student Services and Engagement place the student on MAP Stage 2: Monitored Enrolment and if it is the student’s second fail in the placement course the Head of School can recommend the student be placed on MAP Stage 3: Consideration for Exclusion. Refer to the University’s Monitoring Academic Progress and Exclusion – Academic Policy and related procedures.

9.5 In the case where a student has been identified as failing a placement course (through failing an assessment task) but has withdrawn themselves from the course prior to the recording of the fail grade, the Head of School can initiate MAP Stage 2 or 3, as if the student had failed the course.

9.6 If the decision is to allow the student to continue in the placement course, the Head of School is required to notify the student, identifying any conditions associated with the student’s continued enrolment in the course.

9.7 The student can seek a review of the assessment result as identified in the University’s Review of Assessment and Final Grade – Procedures. If failed in the course, the student will be given the opportunity to seek a review of the notified intended grade without needing to wait until the official release of grades result for the relevant teaching period, as identified in the University’s Review of Assessment and Final Grade – Procedures.

10. Placement breakdown or a breach of the USC – Placement Partner Agreement

10.1 If the student or the University considers the placement is of insufficient quality or level to provide the student with an appropriate placement experience, or if there is a breakdown in the placement due to circumstances outside the control of the student, and the matter cannot be resolved through consultation between all parties, the Head of School must conduct an investigation based on the principles of natural justice. Every effort must be made to ensure that the student is not academically or financially disadvantaged and that support and advocacy options are made available to the student.

10.2 The outcome of the investigation may be recommending that:

  • the student’s placement continues with closer monitoring by the University;
  • the student’s placement with the placement partner is suspended until identified issues have been resolved to the satisfaction of the all parties; or
  • the student’s placement with the placement partner is terminated and a replacement placement is identified for the student.

10.3 The Head of School may consider the future of the relationship with the placement partner and whether the process to terminate a USC – Placement Partner Agreement should be commenced.

11. Placement review

USC will collate feedback on placement activities using the eVALU8 survey tool and the information used to course improvement.

12. Records management

All records must be captured by all staff, at every stage of this activity, and should provide reliable and accurate evidence of business decisions and actions. All records must be captured in an approved records management system, in accordance with the University’s Information Management Framework – Governing Policy.

All communications regarding the grounds for the medical assessment, the University’s Health Practitioner Report or other personal assessment documents are stored in the CRM. The Student Disclosure Form, including any completed actions taken, is stored in the Sonia system. Born-physical records (such as agreements containing wet signatures or letters received in hard copy) are then batched for storage by Information Management Services, in accordance with the Information and Records Management – Procedures.

13. Grievance with a decision

A student who is dissatisfied with a decision made on their case under the provisions of these procedures request a review consistent with the Student Grievance Resolution – Governing Policy and associated Procedures.

END

Annexure A