Placement toolkit

Our partners and student placement supervisors play a critical and invaluable role in equipping our students with workplace skills and professional attitudes.

Find useful support information below:

Formal agreements should be developed between JCU and your organisation whenever there are JCU students participating in student placements or projects. This can be either in the form of an MOU, a deed, a schedule, or a student placement agreement.

Agreements must be in place before a student starts their placement or project with your organisation. They are designed to ensure that expectations and logistical arrangements are clear for you and your student. Agreements on Intellectual Property (IP) ownership should also be recorded within all agreements. Usually if a student is not paid then that student will own the IP.

Depending on your industry and professional accreditation requirements, student placements may also be called: clinical placements, clinical education, professional placements, legal placements, professional experience, Prof.Ex, work-integrated-learning (WIL), fieldwork, field trips, experiential learning, service learning, internships, professional industry experience, professional internships, and practicums.

Both the academic supervisor at JCU and your professional/industry supervisor may contribute to assessment of students’ performance. You/your team will usually be expected to provide constructive, ongoing performance feedback throughout the placement or project. Feedback to students should be:

  • aligned with their learning goals
  • personalised, timely and expected
  • focussed on behaviour that can be modified

JCU also appreciates your feedback on ways in which we can improve our curriculum to ensure our students are prepared for authentic placement experiences.

Our curriculum focusses on authentic learning experiences to develop students who are work-ready.

Our students are encouraged to network and develop employability skills throughout their study at JCU. They have access to a work placement preparation program, career action plans, networking events and online training modules. Online modules include: effective workplace communication, thriving in a workplace, and teamwork.

Each student on a placement in your organisation should have workplace health and safety induction as soon as they arrive. Students should also have:

  • a workplace supervisor
  • a dedicated work space
  • defined hours
  • a tour of the workplace
  • an explanation of workplace confidentiality and ethics agreements
  • a copy of your workplace code of conduct guidelines/policy.

Students who undertake placements or projects as part of their course requirements are covered by JCU’s student insurance :

  • Professional Indemnity
  • Public and Products Liability
  • Group Personal Accident
  • Medical Malpractice

What is not covered:

  • Any activity which is not related to the placement
  • A student’s personal property
  • The use of personal motor vehicles or the placement provider’s vehicles
  • If a student receives any form of payment of reward for the work undertaken while on a placement the University's insurance program will not extend to cover that student

If the placement or project is paid then you are considered as an employer and your organisation will need to supply Work Cover or comparable insurance. The Australian Government’s Fair Work website is a useful resource to explain the differences between paid and unpaid placements.

Placement activities vary widely, depending on your industry or business, and each student’s learning goals. As the workplace expert, guidelines should be based on realistic expectations, such as what a novice would be able to achieve in the placement’s timeframe. It is also important to discuss your student’s expectations and learning goals.

An effective workplace supervisor:

  • asks the students lots of questions;
  • seeks explanation from the student on specific points of detail;
  • encourages the students to analyse workplace interactions;
  • requests evaluations of how effectively work tasks are performed;
  • discusses effective interpersonal skills involved in work interactions;
  • checks the student’s knowledge and understanding;
  • links practical knowledge with theoretical ideas;
  • verbalises problem-solving and practical thinking processes

Contact our placements staff.

Our careers and employability team can help you advertise work and provide details about the annual careers fair. Visit our employers webpage.