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ACEN Australian Collaborative Education Network logo

Supporting Work Integrated Learning (WIL)

in Australia

• Late August 2013 Newsletter •

ACEN website

Hi %%firstname%%

ACEN eNews

In this issue

1. 'Assessing the Impact of Work Integrated Learning on Student Work-Readiness'

2. WIL Leadership: Advancing the Framework

3. State Chapter AGMs

4. ACEN Research Grants Awardees

5. ACEN 2014 Conference update 'Work Integrated Learning: Building Capacity'

6. Core Skills For Work Developmental Framework

7. Asia-Pacific Journal of Cooperative Education Special Issue

8. FWO and Fair Work Australia

9. ACEN Student Scholarship 2013 Analysis





14. You can contribute too

15. Contact us

1. 'Assessing the Impact of Work Integrated Learning on Student Work-Readiness'

Symposia on the Australian OLT Project

Project details

These events will provide opportunities for participants to

  • discuss research findings from the project, and
  • consider strategies for enhancing employability outcomes for Higher Education graduates.

In collaboration with ACEN, the events are scheduled as follows:

  • Curtin, Perth, 10.30am to 1pm Thursday 29 August 2013
  • RMIT, Melbourne, 10.30am to 1pm Thursday 5 September 2013
  • University of Newcastle, 2pm to 3.30pm Friday 6 September
  • Griffith, Brisbane, 10.30am to 1pm Monday 9 September

More details and how to register (PDF)

Project logos

2. WIL Leadership: Advancing the Framework

The draft WIL Leadership framework that has emerged from the work of the Project has been subjected to testing by groups of WIL Leaders in five universities over the month of August, and the valuable feedback gained from these Leaders is being used to refine the Framework. An important next step is to gather resources for developing WIL Leadership capabilities in each the five domains identified by the Framework. Vignettes will be sourced from WIL Leaders for this purpose, and linked to the Framework over the months to come. 

Project details

3. State Chapter AGMs

voting handsState Chapters are holding there AGM and election of state committees and representative to the national Board. Most are offering an option to join in by teleconference.

Queensland – Wednesday, 4 September 2013, 2.00pm

Western Australia – Wednesday, 4 September 2013, 9.00 am

Victoria and Tasmania – Thursday, 5 September 2013, 12:30pm

New South Wales and the Australian Capital Territory – Friday, 6 September 2013, 1.15pm

South Australia and the Northern Territory – Wednesday, 18 September 2013, 10.30 am

4. ACEN Research Grant Awardees

magnifying glassWe are pleased to announce the following applications have been successful in obtaining a grant of $10,000 under the ACEN Research Grant program.

Measuring, impact and evidence: Playing and building WIL in the Sandpit

Team led by Friederika Kaider with Dr Rachael Hains-Wesson.

The project will tease out some of the different ways in which WIL authenticity is used and often confused between simulations, real experience, case studies and problem based learning.  The project will investigate 'the student voice' and present a quantitative data analysis from pre- and post- Course Enhancement Process (CEP) that occurs at Deakin University.

Work Integrated Learning in Social Work and Human Services – An assessment of financial stress

Team led by Professor Greg Marston, Queensland University of Technology

This project seeks to understand and analyse the financial impact on social work and human services students resulting from their participation in work placements and to recommend strategies for alleviating this stress. The project will explore student perceptions of how financial stress impacts on how well they engage with the potentially rich learning opportunity provided through placements.

5. ACEN 2014 Conference update 'Work Integrated Learning: Building Capacity'

Research Symposium

Monday 29th September, 2014
in Brisbane hosted by Queensland University of Technology and Griffith University.

Pre-Conference Workshops

Tuesday 30th September, 2014
at the Gold Coast hosted by Southern Cross University

Anyone interested in presenting and leading a workshop on this day is encouraged to contact Michael Whelan (michael.whelan@scu.edu.au) to explore your ideas and possibilities.


Wednesday 1st – Friday 3rd October, 2014
Twin Towns Services Club

Call for papers

A call for papers will be published shortly on the conference website, with full refereed research papers due by mid-March.

Conference website

6. Core Skills For Work Developmental Framework

CoreSkillsFramework-coverFrom This framework has recently been released by DIICCSRTE and DEEWR.

The Core Skills for Work Developmental Framework (the CSfW) describes a set of non-technical skills, knowledge and understandings that underpin successful participation in work.

This set of non-technical skills, often referred to as generic or employability skills, contribute to work performance in combination with technical or discipline specific skills and core language, literacy and numeracy (LLN) skills.

7. Asia-Pacific Journal of Cooperative Education

Asia Pacific Journal

The Asia-Pacific Journal of Cooperative Education publishes peer-reviewed original research, topical issues, and best practice articles from throughout the world dealing with Cooperative Education (Co-op) and Work Integrated Learning/Education (WIL).

Volume 14 (2013) Issue 3 (Special Issue)

Special Issue: Work Integrated Learning - Investing in the Future.

Papers from the Australian Collaborative Education Network Annual Conference 2012

Guest Editor: Matthew Campbell

8. FWO and Fair Work Australia

Consultation with the sector on progressing the recommendations from the recent report will be delayed until after the election as the Government is in caretaker mode and is not able to do external consultation at this time .

9. ACEN Student Scholarship 2013 Analysis

by Dr Keri Moore, SCU, Chair of the selection panel

handsAdvertised through the ACEN website the Student Scholarships are intended to be a value add for member institutions. In 2010, the first year scholarships were offered, 70 applications were received. In 2011, three scholarships were offered with 828 applications received from across all states of Australia, including two overseas applications. One hundred and twenty three eligible applications were been received for the five scholarships at $1500 each in 2012. 

In 2013 we received 340 eligible applications for five $1500 scholarships for students undertaking WIL regional and remote communities of Australia.

An overview of the data collected during analysis of the 2013 applications is as follows. 

Weeks on placement: 4 weeks (n=34); 5 weeks (n=55); 6 to 8 weeks (n=80); 8 to 10 weeks (n=38) and; more than 10 weeks (n=118). 57/340 said they will earn income while on placement and 194/340 report they will need to pay double rent.

Distance travelled to WIL: no travel (n=16); up to 100km (n=58); between 100-500km (n=106); 500-1000km (n=56); 1000-2000km (n=58) and; Over 2000k (n=46). Average distance between 100-1000km

Current living status: Partnered no dependants (n=32); Single, living at home, supported by family (n=37); Single, living away, supported by family (n=22); Single living at home, financially independent (n=60); Partnered with dependents (n=25); Single, living away, financially independent (n=145) and; Sole parent=7 (n=7).

Below are details of the number of applicants from each university.

  • Australian Catholic University - 2
  • Charles Darwin University – 2
  • Charles Sturt University - 62
  • Curtin University – 9
  • Edith Cowan University – 4
  • Flinders University – 37
  • Griffith University – 32
  • James Cook – 19
  • Murdoch University – 2
  • QUT – 50
  • RMIT – 8
  • Southern Cross University - 8
  • University of Canberra - 3
  • University of Newcastle - 4
  • University of Notre Dame - 6
  • University of Queensland - 5
  • University of Sydney - 4
  • Single applications from each of these universities: Curtin University; Deakin University; Monash University; The University of Western Sydney; The University of Wollongong and; University of Melbourne


'The Challenges of creating WIL Placements for a diverse student cohort'

NSW/ACT Chapter of ACEN Forum • 6 September, 2013

University of Newcastle

Closing date extended to Sunday 1 September.

The topic is The Challenges of creating WIL Placements for a diverse student cohort.  It will be an interactive day with a number of interesting case studies and panel discussions.

There will also be a workshop on How we can place ALL our students and a special presentation by Dr Calvin Smith on Student Outcomes from WIL experiences. Those of you who attended the forum in May will have heard Calvin speak about the research design for this major investigation at 13 universities to determine student outcomes from Work Integrated Learning experiences. Calvin will be able to present the research findings at our forum in September.

Register and more


2013 Work Ready Festival

Curtin 2013 Work Ready FestivalCurtin 2013 Work Ready Festival

Curtin University hosted the 2013 Work Ready Festival on Wednesday 14th August. This event is designed to showcase and facilitate varying approaches students can take to increase employability and career success. In addition to Curtin career specialists, this year's festival featured over 70 employers across all industries plus a range of associations and clubs. 

 The priority is to ensure students are getting meaningful, personal advice in a dynamic and engaging setting – we want students to be motivated and energised by the opportunities that lie ahead. In addition to individual employer booths, the initiative included a small business and entrepreneurship networking zone and opportunities for students to get one on one resume and interview advice from employers such as KPMG and Ernst & Young.

 The online delivery of the Work Ready Festival was also a vital component of the event this year as this approach ensured information was easily accessible – both before and after the event. Students were not disadvantaged if they were unable to attend. Students have access to the Work Ready Festival online portal with supportive resources across Facebook, Tumblr and You Tube – live online chats, industry Q&As, Curtin Alumni stories and online workshops.  

'Assessing the Impact of Work Integrated Learning on Student Work-Readiness'

Symposia on the Australian OLT Project

The WA chapter of ACEN is looking forward to hosting the Symposium for the OLT project on student work-readiness. Dr Calvin Smith will be facilitating this event. Sixty eager participants have registered to attend. Details of the event  are:

Curtin, Perth, 10.30am to 1pm Thursday 29 August 2013

Curtin University Building 104 room 101

Lunch is provided

Project details

For queries or registration please email Sonia Ferns on S.Ferns@curtin.edu.au


Diary marker: ACEN SA/NT is working in partnership with SANTPEN (SA/NT Promoting Excellence Network) and HERDSA in developing a joint event within the broad theme of Evaluation, Collaboration and Collegiality.  This full-day event will be held in Adelaide on 20th November, and will include a variety of speakers and workshops covering topical issues relevant to each of the networks.  Elements of the event will be video-conferenced. 

Details are still being finalised and will be circulated as soon as possible.  In the meantime, please add this date to your diary!

13. 'Impact of WIL' Symposium, followed by Lunch,

Ship Inn, South Bank, Brisbane, Monday 9 September, 10.30am to 1.30pm.

This will be the fourth in the series of Symposia organised in collaboration with ACEN, on the findings of the national OLT-funded project, titled, 'Assessing the impact of Work Integrated Learning (WIL) on student readiness for work'.

The Symposium is an opportunity to

  • hear about and discuss research findings from the project, and
  • consider strategies for enhancing employability outcomes for Higher Education graduates.

Project details

After the Symposium enjoy lunch on the lovely verandah of Ship Inn, with Project Leader Dr Calvin Smith and fellow guests.

Note that for those who cannot be in Brisbane, an e-mediated Symposium will held at a later date. Details to come

For catering purposes, kindly let Pat know if you will be joining us: p.cretchley@griffith.edu.au

14. 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 to admin@acen.edu.au

15. Contact us




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