Human Services – Placement | UniSC | University of the Sunshine Coast, Queensland, Australia

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Human Services – Placement

The Human Services Field Placement courses, SWK201 and SWK305 are an integral component of the Bachelor of Human Services program at UniSC.

These courses are scheduled in the second (SWK201) and third (SWK300) years of the degree, in the School of Law and Society and provide an opportunity for students to integrate theory and knowledge with practice, during a field placement within a human services organisation. UniSC Human Services placements meet the Australian Community Workers Association (ACWA) accreditation requirements, enabling students to develop a range of essential professional skills, knowledge and ethical frameworks sought by employers in the human services industry.

Fields of practice

Human Services placements regularly occur in a number of government or non-government agencies. Fields of practice may include, but are not limited to:

  • Youth Work
  • Child Protection
  • Domestic and Family Violence
  • Community Centres
  • Working with Families and Children
  • Health, Mental Health and Wellbeing
  • Working with First Nations Communities
  • Disability Work
  • Private Practice working with participants of the NDIS
  • Working with Multicultural Communities
  • Crisis intervention and emergency relief
  • International Practice (final placement only.)

Students undertake two placements across the degree, comprising of 250 hours each in an approved human services organisation.

A standard human services placement is 3 days per week across approximately 11 - 12 weeks in semester 1 or 2. Students can request to be considered for a part-time placement of 2 days per week (minimum of 16 hours per week). This is subject to placement agencies being able to provide this option. Wherever possible, the Field Education Team will work with students and placement providers to facilitate this, as required.

Students become immersed in organisational practice and develop professional relationships with colleagues, clients and the community. Students will transfer campus-based learning into a real-world practice environment, enabling them to develop new skills as they integrate theories with practice.

It may be possible for a student to apply for Recognised Prior Learning (RPL) for the first placement course in their degree, if they have significant, relevant prior employment experience that aligns with the ACWA accreditation requirements. Students who wish to enquire further about RPL should email to request a copy of the RPL policy and application process and to organise a time to discuss their circumstances further with a staff member of the Field Education Team.

No remuneration or payment is made by the agencies or organisations to the students (unless under prior arrangement) or to the University for hosting a student. Students undertaking an unpaid placement are covered by the University’s insurance policies for worker’s compensation and third party insurance.

It may be possible for a student to apply to undertake a Work-Based Placement (WBP) for one of their two human services placements. This may be possible in instances where a human services student is currently employed in a human services organisation that ordinarily offers student placements. Students who wish to enquire further about WBPs should email to request a copy of the application process and to organise a time to discuss their circumstances further, with a staff member of the Field Education Team.

Pre-placement processes are coordinated by the Field Education team and commence almost 6 months prior to students beginning placement.

All students enrolled in the Bachelor of Human Services will receive an email from very early in the semester, prior to the one in which they are due to undertake a placement. For example, if a student is eligible and planning to undertake their placement in semester 2, they will receive an email from in approximately weeks 1 – 3 of semester 1 just prior, advising that the pre-placement processes have commenced.

It is essential that students read this email and promptly start completing the pre-placement activities that are detailed in the email. Students who do not adhere to the dates and timeframes detailed in the email, may not be able to proceed to placement in the following semester. They may need to defer and discuss their further progression in the degree with an Advisor from Student Central.

Each placement course has a pre-placement workshop timetabled for the week prior to Orientation week each semester (i.e., 2 weeks prior to the official start of the semester.) Attendance and participation on campus at the pre-placement workshop is compulsory and constitutes one of the assessment tasks for each placement course.

Integration workshops are also taught throughout the semester and count towards the 250 hours of placement required for each course. The placement courses include assessment tasks similar to any university course. Further details about this can be obtained from the relevant placement course outline, available from the UniSC website.


The planning and coordination of placements by the Field Education Coordinator can take up to six months. To commence this planning process, students will receive an email, providing instructions on this process, toward the beginning of the semester prior to them commencing their placement. Registering for placement and enrolling in the courses are two separate functions of student placement. Students will need to enrol in SWK201 and SWK305 when enrolments open for all courses. Registering for a placement does not include enrolment.

Placements and pre-placement processes are coordinated by the Field Education Team in conjunction with the UniSC Work Integrated Learning (WIL) Team and the Fit For Placement Office (FFPO).

All students will be invited to a pre-placement information session provided online each semester. This session provides further details about human services placements including mandatory compliance requirements, steps involved in securing a field placement, agency requirements and processes, and information to assist students with preparing. Following this, students who are eligible for placement will have an individual pre-placement interview with a staff member from Field Education to discuss their circumstances and to begin the placement matching process.
Students must continue to check their UniSC student emails regularly for further updates and details about field education that are provided throughout each semester.
We look forward to working with you, to organise your human services field placements.

For more information about the SWK201 and SWK305 courses please contact:

The Social Work and Human Services Field Education Team
(Sunshine Coast, Moreton Bay and Fraser Coast campuses.)
School of Law and Society

For general enquiries about work integrated learning opportunities or assistance accessing Human Services Sonia Online resources please contact:

Tania Halliday
Senior Work Integrated Learning Placement Officer
Tel: 07 5456 5846