Meet an ex-student – Ryan
Ryan Burles an ex-student of CSU says that “The Workplace Learning Unit makes you that much more prepared for entering the workforce, being able to take what you learn from University and to put it to use wherever your career takes you.”
He went into his first placement for BUS110 at Hume bank within their management department and through his networking, given the opportunity of working with their marketing team, designing brochures and getting that exposure to the marketing side of the business.
He liked the fact that the WPL team was able to source his work placement locally so as to not disrupt his tertiary studies and commitments. “As Uni students we usually have multiple commitments going at the same time, 4 classes, a job and our work placement which makes for a heavy load to balance. Being able to take my work placement locally alleviated that strain to some degree.”
Would you recommend this WPL experience to current and future students at CSU?
“I would absolutely recommend undertaking work placement to any current or future CSU students, we here at Hume Bank try to give students the ability to work in their respective fields of study but also give them the opportunity to branch out and find their interests. We like to have the students that take their placement with us working on current projects and tasks, giving them a chance to contribute and add value to the organisation and their experience with us. You can study all you want in lectures but being able to translate it through to the workplace is what matters most.”
Do you have any advice for students looking for or currently in work placement?
“Given that work placement is required while undertaking the Workplace learning units, most students see it as more of a task and don’t really think much of or care where it is they take their placement. You should try and take your placement in a field that interests you, someplace you can see yourself working in the future and go at it with lots of enthusiasm. Don’t be afraid to put yourself out there more and try to expose yourself to as much as possible while you’re at University and add it to your CV, resume, Cover letter, whatever. Businesses like knowing that you have been exposed to multiple industries and are more likely to hire you if you have a varied skillset.”
Article written by Jonathon Schmidt, Workplace Learning student (BUS110)
Did you know?
There’s accreditation that specifies work placement?
In our faculty that’s the Australian Psychological Accreditation Council (APAC) in Psychology and Engineers Australia (EA) in Engineering and these degrees are only possible because of our WPL program.
You can read more about these bodies by clicking on the links below the logos.
Behind the scenes – Academic Senate
In November 2017 Academic Senate approved CSU’s Workplace Learning Narrative.
Definition of workplace learning – The CSU narrative defines workplace learning as: supervised, purposeful, situated, contextual, collaborative learning that occurs in real world professional settings.
Workplace learning’s core features – In order to be classified as Workplace Learning (WPL) at CSU the following three (3) elements MUST be present:
- students’ active participation and purposeful engagement with professional roles and responsibilities in real world professional environments;
- WPL is supported by sound learning and teaching strategies and appropriate supervision; and
- WPL counts towards academic credit as part of a compulsory component of the course.
Workplace Learning Practice Guidelines – The WPL good practice guidelines include eight principles. These guidelines are a generic compass to help course directors and teams navigate the WPL landscape and ensure quality WPL experiences.
The eight good practice principles are:
- Create purposeful designs that align with learning outcomes
- Select WPL experiences tailored to student and host needs
- Establish and maintain collaborative, reciprocal partnerships
- Ensure students are comprehensively prepared for WPL experiences
- Provide constructive and timely support during WPL experiences
- Facilitate constructive post-WPL reflection for students and WPL partners
- Ensure rigorous and fair assessments of student performances and outcomes with WPL partners
- Evaluate WPL program and revise systems and actions in consultation with WPL partners
Want to read more? Click on this link for the CSU WPL guide
Coming up – A new CSU degree
CSU has recently launched a new degree – the Bachelor of Business (Industry Professional Practice) in response to both student and industry demands that we graduate professionals who have a broad generalist knowledge about business and are ahead of the pack in terms of work readiness. Unsurprisingly student engagement with the professional world is key to this degree which is where WPL comes in. Students will undertake three WPL subjects to graduate with a total of 225 hours placement under their belt. You can read more about the new degree here: Bachelor of Business (Industry Professional Practice).
(Left to right: Julie Newham, Amber Marks and Liz Bracken)
November staff profile – Jen
Jennifer Weller is a sessional lecturer for CSU’s Albury/Wodonga campus with a Bachelor of Science majoring in Microbiology, Biotechnology and Biochemistry, on her way to a Masters, Grad Dip and Grad cert in Operations management and marketing. She runs the LAMP (leadership and management program) for University staff as well as being an avid volunteer, helping to develop the region. Her philosophy is “Do what you say you will do, help where you can, and share your experiences and your shoulder”.
She has worked with the Workplace Learning team to develop the WPL subjects (with the help of Lou and Liz), conducted research into the financial benefits of WPL to the local business economy and connected many businesses to CSU through WPL.
She runs a range of subjects for CSU:
- BUS110 Workplace Learning 1 (Albury internal and Distance)
- BUS220 Workplace Learning 2 (Albury Internal)
- BUS370 Workplace Learning 3 (Distance)
- HRM210 Human Resource Management (Albury Internal)
- MGT367 Leadership Issues (Internal and Distance)
- MGT320 Managing Change (Internal)
- HRM560 Training and Development Environment (Distance)
- ULM502 Leadership Perspectives and Processes (Distance)
- MGT210 Organisational Behaviour (Distance)
What does Jennifer love about WPL at CSU?
“I love the difference it makes to the students and the businesses they’re placed with. We are currently the only university in Australia that has a compulsory Work placement in Business and Accounting. We make a big difference in the students’ lives because going to university is about developing your future career path. These subjects give the students usable connections and real-life work experience, which means they end up more employable and on to a better wage. Because I am the only one who reads the BUS370 final assessment, I can see the impact the subjects have on the students and their development.”
Her advice to students looking, applying and/or currently in work placement is:
“Start early, plan where you want to go and start courting those businesses at least 6 months before you plan to start. Make sure you make the most of it and don’t take the easy option. Don’t be the one I read that says they wished they took it more seriously in the beginning. These subjects can change your life so grab those opportunities.”
Her hobbies and interests include, but are not limited to:
- Regional Development and Leadership
- Arts and crafts (Spinning, weaving, painting, embroidery, Pergamano, beading, jewellery making, paper toll)
Article written by Jonathon Schmidt, Workplace Learning student (BUS110)