Can I find my own placement?
It is against our policy for students in the Adelaide metropolitan region to organise their own placements (for many reasons, including our agreement with agencies and our responsibility to meet ASWEAS requirements). Students are asked not to contact agencies to find a placement.
Students can search for their own placement up until week 6. After that time the Placement, Partnership and Innovation (PPI) team will source a placement as per standard placement processes.
For further information read the Information Sheet: Interstate Student Placements and email the PPI team and use the subject: "Interstate Student Query adding your student name and ID", with questions related to placement matching and requirements.
How does the placement matching process work and how long does it take?
It is essential that students have the opportunity to participate in a broad range of learning experiences in field education and the placement matching process takes this into account. Commonly, final placement students and those with variations to their placement will be prioritised in the placement allocation process, but this does not necessarily mean that they will be matched first.
While there are some exceptions the placement matching process takes around 12 weeks to complete. Students will receive information about their allocated placements via email and FLO throughout this process.
What factors are considered in matching a student to a placement?
The placement matching process has to take into account multiple factors, including ASWEAS requirements, practical considerations (eg access plans, driver’s licence, where students live, availability of onsite social work supervision) and agency requirements. While student interests are taken into account, there can be no guarantee that a student will be matched to an area of interest. Placement opportunities are entirely dependent on the pool of available placements and the matching of agency and student characteristics.
Agencies may have particular requirements that preclude some students from consideration. Agency requirements include: driver’s licence; minimum and maximum days a student can attend placement; dates for starting and/or completing placement; student’s level of experience; first or final placement students; after hours availability; variations in attendance (eg later start time); student’s communication skills; student’s undergraduate degree (some agencies will only consider MSW students with a related undergraduate degree); student’s interest in field and/or method of practice (eg group work); students ability to speak a particular language (eg Arabic).
How are interstate student placements organised?
Interstate students have been required to find their own placements with the support of the PPI team. This is because interstate placements are highly competitive and students often have local knowledge that can assist in securing placements - particularly in rural locations.
From semester 1 2020 changes have been implemented to ensure students commence their placements on time and that all social work program, University and host organisation compliance requirements are met. The new processes are as follows:
Until week 6
Students can submit contact name and details of a potential placement via the partnership, placement and innovation (PPI) team unless advised otherwise.
If the PPI team has been provided with a suitable placement offer in the student’s state or territory that meets ASWEAS requirements they will be matched to this placement and contacted accordingly. Following this, there would be no requirement for a student to source their own placement.
After week 6
If students have not sourced a suitable placement that meets ASWEAS requirements, the PPI team will source and match a student to a placement as per the process for South Australian enrolled students. Refer to the Interstate Placement Information Sheet below for more details.