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ACEN Australian Collaborative Education Network  logo

Supporting Work Integrated Learning (WIL)

in Australia

• April 2013 Newsletter •

ACEN website

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ACEN eNews

In this issue

1. ACEN LinkedIn

2. ACEN Student Scholarships

3. WIL Projects

  • Good WIL Hunting
  • The Impact of WIL: Surveying the Australian Scene

4. ACEN Research Grants

5. State events

  • ACENQ Update - International webinar and May 9 webinar - experiences at a recent  WACE Assessment Institute in Florida
  • ACEN WA - 'Researching and Publishing in WIL'
  • ACEN SA/NT - 'Collaboration and Research in WIL: Realising the potential of the ACEN SA/NT network'
  • ACEN VIC/TAS - 'Sharing Good Practice'
  • ACEN ACT/NSW - 'How do we find evidence for the outcomes of WIL?'

6. 2013 NZACE Annual Conference

7. ASET Conference 2013 (UK)

8. WACE Conference 'WIL-Power: Fueling the Future Workforce' (Durban)

9. You can contribute too

10. Contact us

1. ACEN LinkedIn

This is an ACEN member-only LinkedIn Group with over 400 members. Join in the discussion, ask a question - simply register as an ACEN member to join the group. Most universities are financial members so there's no fee if you're on the staff.

Join our LinkedIn group now.

2. ACEN Student Scholarships

ACEN has again offered five, $1,500, scholarships to students undertaking WIL placement in remote regions. Applications close on April 15 and nearly 300 students have applied.

By May 13 short-listed applicants will be notified and asked to provide supporting information as indicated in the application.

See successful applicants and feedback from 2012.

3. WIL Projects

Good WIL Hunting:
Having gathered rich data on WIL leadership in five different disciplines from experienced WIL leaders, from six universities, and industry partners supporting WIL in these fields. The WIL Leadership Project Team is now validating and consolidating the findings. The data are being synthesised and key findings will be sent to stakeholders and those who generously contributed to the study. This vital work will continue over the coming months, as the team brings together the key elements of the data to formulate the WIL Leadership Framework. The WIL Leadership Framework will be available on the ACEN web site and articulate the roles and responsibilities of WIL leaders and provide links to valuable resources.


The Impact of WIL: Surveying the Australian Scene: The project team has entered this year's data capture with gusto! With a dedicated team effort, ten of our partner universities are gathering data on their students' perceptions of their levels of employability. The high level of partner university participation in this surveying reflects the importance that university managers place on having this information. In addition, our project partners in all fourteen universities are currently preparing teachers to capture further crucial data on the impact of studies, with and without WIL placement, on their students. The coming months will see the next step in the research, which is to capture data from employers as part of the project's triangulation and validation strategies.


4. ACEN Research Grants

In 2012 ACEN provided two grants of $10,000 each. Here's an update on one.

'Supporting staff who support students: a narrative study and intervention for health care settings'

Project team: Prof Wendy Hu, University of Western Sydney, Dr. Eleanor Flynn, University of Melbourne, A/Prof Robyn Woodward-Kron, University of Melbourne

This collaborative project, supported by an ACEN Research Grant, aims to evaluate the education and training needs of staff who support students on clinical placements in health care settings and to develop staff training resources. The health service workplace is central to health professional education and training; it is where students learn to apply and integrate their knowledge and skills in patient care, in readiness for safe and competence practice as graduates. However, they – and the staff who support them – are often isolated from on-campus services for student support. In addition, clinical placements often bring their own stressors, such as dealing with ill patients and distressed families, with students needing to find their way and learn in complex and busy environments.

The project team from the Medical Education Units at the University of Western Sydney and University of Melbourne has completed a staff needs analysis by analysing 40 interviews with key staff members across urban and rural clinical placement sites in NSW and Victoria. Many common themes for staff training needs have been identified. These will be used to develop workshop training resources, which will be piloted at the 2013 Australian and New Zealand Health Professional Educator (ANZAHPE) Conference in Melbourne.

For further information about this project, please contact Prof Wendy Hu w.hu@uws.edu.au

ACEN plans to offer more research grants in 2013.

5. State events

ACENQ Update

International webinar

On April 4 ACENQ hosted another highly successful international webinar this time including Australia, New Zealand and Canada.  Fifty-nine participants attended including 11 colleagues from Canada and 8 from New Zealand. Speakers addressed two topics 1) Assessing WIL outcomes through reflective practice and 2) WIL: experience or exploitation an international perspective. You can access the recording at http://tinyurl.com/d599hfj and the presenters' slide sets are available from the ACEN website.  

 May 9 webinar - experiences at a recent  WACE Assessment Institute in Florida

The next ACENQ hosted webinar is scheduled for Thursday May 9 at 10am AEST. First speaker is Annissa O'Shea, University of Southern Queensland (Springfield) who will reflect on her experiences at a recent  WACE Assessment Institute in Florida.  If you are interested in presenting at this webinar please contact Dr Deborah Peach d.peach@qut.edu.au as soon as possible.


'Researching and Publishing in WIL'

The first event planned for ACEN will be held on 15th and 22nd May. The focus of the interactive workshops will be researching work-integrated learning. Dr Karsten Zegwaard will conduct the workshops during his visit to Curtin University.

More (PDF)

ACEN WA flyer ACEN WA flyer


'Collaboration and Research in WIL: Realising the potential of the ACEN SA/NT network'

The SA/NT Chapter of ACEN will be holding a forum on 30th April, entitled 'Collaboration and Research in WIL: Realising the potential of the ACEN SA/NT network.'  If you have an interest in exchanging information on the development and delivery of WIL in South Australia and the Northern Territory, or if you have any potential research proposals that you would like to develop further in partnership with other universities, please come along.  Speakers with significant expertise in setting up and managing multiple-partner research projects and information networks will share their tips and advice, and attendees will have the opportunity to workshop ideas for proposals. The aim will be for attendees to leave the event with clear ideas for collaborative opportunities, and an outline of steps required to take them forward.

The event is being held from 10am – 12noon, Tuesday 30th April, at the Flinders University City Campus – Rm 1 Level 1.  There will be a videoconference link in from Charles Darwin University, and presentations will be recorded.

Registrations are now open!

Free to ACEN members


'Sharing Good Practice'

Friday May 10 (by video conference to several venues - tbc) 11am to 12noon

Ingrid Apsitis – Director, Corporate Internship Program – Faculty of Business, University of Tasmania will share information about the Corporate Internship which integrates both work and learning for 2nd and 3rd year students.  Students undertake a corporate internship placement to complete a project and or related tasks with organizations in the public, private or not for profit sector in Tasmania. 

Chris Gonsalvez – Director, Industry & Community Engagement – Faculty of Information Technology @ Monash will share information about 2 work integrated learning programs:

  • Industry Based Learning Program – where selected students work in organizations on 22 week placements and
  • Industry Experience Projects – where groups of 3 – 4 students develop an IT application for a business client. 

RSVP to Gail Quirk g.quirk@latrobe.edu.au by Monday 6 May.


'How do we find evidence for the outcomes of WIL?'

9 May 2013 10:00 am until 4:00 pm

The University of Sydney, The Law Foyer, Level 2, New Law Building, Camperdown Campus

Register by 24 April 2013

Free to ACEN members


University of Sydney Associate Professor Simon Barrie and Professor Lindy McAllister will be our opening speakers;  both will offer insights into the challenges of finding evidence for the outcomes of WIL.

Dr Calvin Smith, Griffith University has a breadth and depth of knowledge, and has been involved with OLT projects associated with finding and documenting evidence. His research focuses on the evaluation of teaching, courses, programs and university environments. Our invited speakers include a range of colleagues across the sector, and we will be encouraging participants to engage in the sessions. Enquiries:  Please contact Freny Tayebjee - Chair NSW/ACT Chapter of ACEN on f.tayebjee@uws.edu.au

6. 2013 NZACE Annual Conference

'Strategic Directions in Co-op'

21-23 April, 2013

AUT University, Manukau Campus, Auckland, New Zealand


7. ASET Conference 2013 (UK)

The "Social" Revolution • 3-5 September 2013  • University of Greenwich, Greenwich Campus

Keynote Speaker :  Sir Tim Wilson

Professor Sir Tim Wilson is a strong advocate of the centrality of universities in economic and societal development and is acknowledged internationally as being one of the leading thinkers in field of university/business collaboration.


8. WACE Conference 'WIL-Power: Fueling the Future Workforce'

WACE 2013 conference bannerJune 24-27, 2013 - Durban, South Africa

Registrations are now open


9. You can contribute too

Space permitting, in this newsletter we'll share news about state, national and international events, research, projects, position vacancies and more. Submit material by the 10th of each month for distribution a few days later.

10. Contact us




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