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Structured Workplace Learning

Structured Workplace Learning

If you’re studying a practical subject online, a structured work placement will give you the chance to get the hands-on experience that will give you an edge in your chosen industry.

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What is work placement?

Many of our courses involve Structured Workplace Learning - often called work placement. This means that during your course you will complete some of your learning activities (and be assessed) in a real workplace, giving you the chance to develop and demonstrate the skills and knowledge you have been learning in your course.

Structured Workplace Learning could also give you valuable insight into the industry in which you are working. They also help you develop contacts that could assist you on your future job search. Many students tell us that work placement is the most fulfilling aspect of their course!

Firstly, you'll need to identify and secure a relevant workplace. Many students undertake work placement at their current work place or through family, friends of colleagues. We have a range of support resources and services to help you with this process - see 'How does Open Colleges help?' below.

Your work placement will need to be undertaken in Australia at a workplace that has been approved by Open Colleges.

Once you have a work placement, you'll do a series of prescribed tasks and activities over time, and at an appropriate standard, under the guidance of a qualified Workplace Supervisor. You'll record these tasks in a logbook and complete an attendance report.

An Open Colleges Workplace Assessor will regularly interview you and your supervisor to check on your progress. You might also need to create a workplace portfolio, which is used to collect evidence of your workplace experiences.

For those who might need assistance in securing a work placement, there's plenty of support to help you along the way, including:

  • Structured Workplace Learning Support Kit: an online guide available in OpenSpace that provides general advice, tips and resources on how to secure a work placement
  • Workplace Assessment Guide: specific for each course that has Structured Workplace Learning, this guide provides more detail about requirements for that particular course (see 'Where can I find more information'? below for how to access the guide)
  • Work Placement Support Team: our team of dedicated Work Placement Support Officers are there to provide one-on-one support for anyone finding it difficult to obtain a work placement. Call the Student Support team on 1300 650 011 for a referral.

For some of our courses we have additional support resources available, including:

  • Assessment Centres: Open Colleges has established a network of partner organisations in specific industries to act as Assessment Centres, where an Open Colleges Workplace Assessor will be on-site to assess and supervise you
  • Work Placement Centre: We've also developed partnerships with a range of local businesses to act as Open Colleges Work Placement Centres, for those who are having trouble finding a work placement
  • Skills Development Workshops: if you'd like to enhance your practical skills even further, we run regular skill development workshops for certain course areas across major capital cities across Australia.

If you decide to travel to an Assessment Centre, Work Placement Centre or Skill Development Workshop, you'll need to do so at your own cost. There could be a fee involved in the above services, so contact Student Support for all the details.

Check the individual course page to find out if there is an Assessment Centre or Work Placement Centre in your local area.

Check the course detail box on the course page you are interested in. If the delivery mode is online with work placement, then the course includes Structured Workplace Learning.

The course brochure and Workplace Assessment Guide/​Work Placement Overview ​contain specific details about the work placement requirements for that particular course. You can download these documents by going to the particular course page and filling in your contact details - we'll  send you an email with these documents available for download.

You can also call our friendly enrolment consultant on 1300 853 033. They can help you with any questions you may have about work placement or studying with Open Colleges.

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