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Top Tips for Placement Success

Blog by Laura Murray | UNE Life Student Advocacy

Many degrees have a mandatory practical component that includes workplace learning. This includes nursing, teaching, pharmacy and social work at UNE, among others. Most of us won’t have completed a placement or prac prior to studying and heading out on one for the first time, so it can be difficult to know what to expect. Having recently completed my own placement, here are my top tips for getting through it!

Look at your requirements

Start looking at the requirements early in your degree. Most placements will require you to have a police check or working with children check if you are working with vulnerable people. You may also need to comply with NSW Health vaccination requirements to keep yourself and the people you are working with safe.

Take time to consider your workload

Work out how many balls you can realistically juggle. Most students will need to do some form of work to keep the bills paid while on placement. There are also family and social commitments, perhaps and extra unit or two and of course, self-care. It could be worth reviewing your study load for the time you are on placement and working out if you can take a lighter study load than usual so you still have time to do the things you enjoy outside of work and study.

Balance is key

Balance the paperwork with the prac time. If you have been allocated time to do your paperwork while on prac, make sure you clearly and respectfully communicate this with your host organisation. Remember that you are not expected to know everything yet, this is a time to learn and observe so ensure you make time to do that.

Reach out!

Reach out for help early! If things are feeling overwhelming reach out to Advocacy and Welfare for support with things like special extensions, special consideration and welfare support.

It’s all about learning

Remember that it is not forever and is simply another stepping stone towards your degree. Even if your host organisation is not where you dream of working forever, it can still be a great learning experience.

The team at Advocacy and Welfare offers support for students! Contact them here.