Life and Environmental Sciences Placement Information

An internship/placement is designed to give you first-hand discipline-specific experience working within industry. You will have the opportunity to try potential career paths, make valuable contacts and begin to establish your professional networks, all while gaining credit towards your degree.

Please visit UniHub for life and environmental sciences opportunities

Important information for undergraduate students

  1. There is a minimum requirement of 80 hours for your placement (or two x 40 hour placements). Placements can be up to a maximum of 160 hours.
  2. The organisation is to nominate a supervisor for your placement.
  3. The hours and days that you participate in the placement are to be negotiated between you and the organisation. You will not be given special consideration for missing essential classes/practical classes/tests or for late assignments etc. due to work placement commitments. NB: SLE225 placements are undertaken during Trimester 3.
  4. Should your placement be scheduled during trimester, on a part time basis, you must provide information with your application outlining how you will complete the placement hours around your classes.
  5. You need to check with the organisation of any special requirements for your placement, e.g. Police Check or Working with Children Check.
  6. You must have passed STP010 Career Tools for Employability and met the other pre-requisite requirements for the relevant unit:
    • SLE225 – students must have completed a minimum of 8 credit points and passed STP010.
    • SLE301 – students must have completed a minimum of 12 credit points and passed STP010.
    • SLE352 – students must have completed a minimum of 12 credit points and passed STP010.
    • SLE390 – students must have completed a minimum of 14 credit points and passed STP010.
  7. The placement must be voluntary.
  8. The placement must not be observational only.

SLE225

Academic queries

SLE225 Unit Chair: Please refer to the University Handbook for unit chair and assessment details.

Apply

Please refer to Preparing and sourcing your WIL Placement for useful information.

To apply, visit InPlace where you will complete an application and attach the Industry Placement Form for your placement. See Self-Placement Student Instructions (PDF, 476.7KB) for assistance on how to complete this step.

Note: When submitting your attachments in InPlace, please make sure you click ‘Upload’ and then 'Save'.

SLE301

Academic queries

SLE301 Unit Chair: Please refer to the University Handbook for unit chair and assessment details.

Apply

Please refer to Preparing and sourcing your WIL Placement for useful information.

To apply, visit InPlace where you will complete an application and attach the agreement and the Industry Placement Form for your placement. See Self-Placement Student Instructions (PDF, 476.7KB) for assistance on how to complete this step.

Important information about Deakin Graduate Learning Outcomes (DGLO):
You will need to ensure you complete the relevant fields regarding the placement description and the DGLO 1-8 fields in your InPlace application.

It is expected that your placement will help to enhance your capabilities in all 8 DGLOs. You must provide a summary (approx. 3-4 sentences or bullet points for each) as to how your placement will address each DGLO.

If your placement is unlikely to allow you to develop any one of the DGLOs, then you must explain why the specific DGLO will not be met. Placements may not be approved where DGLOs cannot be met.

Assessment of your performance at the completion of your placement will be based on the eight DGLOs.

Note: When submitting your attachments in InPlace, please make sure you click ‘Upload’ and then 'Save'.

SLE352

Academic queries

SLE352 Unit Chair: Please refer to the University Handbook for unit chair and assessment details.

Apply

Students will be able to apply for group projects via the unit site through DeakinSync at the beginning of Trimester 1. Clients will provide a report on the team performance at the end of the group project.

SLE390

Academic queries

SLE390 Unit Chair: Please refer to the University Handbook for unit chair and assessment details.

Apply

Please refer to Preparing and sourcing your WIL Placement for useful information.

To apply, visit InPlace where you will complete an application and attach the agreement, the Industry Placement Form and the additional assessment of current paid or volunteer work document (if your placement is non-course related). See Self-Placement Student Instructions (PDF, 476.7KB) for assistance on how to complete this step.

Important information about Deakin Graduate Learning Outcomes (DGLO):
You will need to ensure you complete the relevant fields regarding the placement description and the DGLO 1-8 fields in your InPlace application.

It is expected that your placement will help to enhance your capabilities in all 8 DGLOs. You must provide a summary (approx. 3-4 sentences or bullet points for each) as to how your placement will address each DGLO.

If your placement is unlikely to allow you to develop any one of the DGLOs, then you must explain why the specific DGLO will not be met. Placements may not be approved where DGLOs cannot be met.

Assessment of your performance at the completion of your placement will be based on the eight DGLOs.

Note: When submitting your attachments in InPlace, please make sure you click ‘Upload’ and then 'Save'.

SLE766

Postgraduate students will have the opportunity to undertake an internship and gain professional work experience with an approved host organisation. The exact nature, activities and emphasis in each industry placement will vary according to the context, resources and expertise of staff as well as the experience, qualities and aspirations of the student. This systematic opportunity will provide students with experiences with which they can learn about and with an organisation, critically reflect on their Course and Graduate Learning Outcomes, and discipline-specific and generic competencies in the context of work.

SLE766 Industry Practice for Postgraduate LES students

Pre-requisites

Discipline-specific, full time placement of 450-500 hours.

International students undertaking this unit are only allowed a maximum of 480 hours (or approximately 64 working days) of full time work, without being in breach of student visa obligations.

  • This is only available to students in one of the following courses: Master of Sustainability or S772 Master of Biotechnology and Bioinformatics
  • You must have completed STP710 Career Tools for Employability prior to the placement trimester
  • You must have completed 8 credit points of study at level 7 prior to the commencement of the placement.

Academic queries

SLE766 Unit Chair: Please refer to the University Handbook for unit chair and assessment details.

Apply

Please refer to Preparing and sourcing your WIL Placement for useful information.

Before you send the Placement Agreement to the organisation, please contact the WIL Team to determine if the faculty has an existing agreement with the organisation

To apply, visit InPlace where you will complete an application and attach the agreement and the Industry Placement Form for your placement. See Self-Placement Student Instructions (PDF, 476.7KB) for assistance on how to complete this step.

Note: When submitting your attachments in InPlace, please make sure you click ‘Upload’ and then 'Save'.

SLE314

The Research Project offers select students an opportunity to get first-hand experience about conducting research in collaboration with one of the academics at Deakin.

SLE314 Research Project

Pre-requisites

Sourcing your project

Students interested in SLE314 must source their own research project.  It is a competitive process and the supervisors of the project make the final decisions.

When choosing a project my advice would be to choose a project that you are interested in.  These projects can result in an opportunity to complete an honours year after you finish your degree.

A good place to start is to check what the research profiles of staff are by looking at the staff listing.

https://www.deakin.edu.au/life-environmental-sciences/staff-listing

OR alternatively, look at the honours projects they offered in 2021.  These may not be the exact projects offered by will give you an idea of the area they work in.

https://www.deakin.edu.au/students/faculties/sebe/les-students/honours

If you find an area of interest, please send an email to the supervisor with the following information:

  • A brief introduction about yourself
  • A copy of your academic transcript
  • Check what your current WAM is to ensure you have met the pre-requisite
  • State your interest in their work
  • Ask if they have any available project opportunities

Please note selection to a project is done by the supervisor of the project and not the unit team.

Meet the pre-requisites – What do I do next?

If you secure a project then ask the supervisor to email Associate Prof Jan West at jan.west@deakin.edu.au stating they accept you to complete the project. Prof West will then send you an email confirming your enrolment. You can take this email to a course advisor and they will manually enrol you in the unit.

Any questions about this unit please contact Associate Prof Jan West at jan.west@deakin.edu.au

To help you source a possible project, the School of LES has started collating a list of projects currently on offer.

This is not an extensive list and students are required to seek more information from the researchers, if they are interested.

Students are encouraged to research widely for potential projects beyond this list.

Projects on Offer for T3, 2021, T1, 2022, T2, 2022

(1)  Prof Euan Ritchie – Greater Gliders (Burwood campus) from T3, 2021

Greater gliders are the second largest gliding mammal in the world and were reclassified as three distinct species in 2020, rather than just one. Greater gliders are widely distributed along the east coast of Australia and face numerous threats including habitat loss and climate change. These species have been the subject of much research and public interest in the last few years, however an extensive review of their ecology has not been performed since 2004, before they were considered threatened with extinction and reclassified as three species. Hence, we believe there is a strong need to review the current literature for greater gliders and classify the evidence relative to each of the three species. The aims of this project are to: i) perform a systematic literature review to identify and collate relevant greater glider literature, ii) summarise the amount of literature and key findings relative to each of the three greater glider species  (based on the distribution of each species), iii) assess the current status of information for each greater glider species and identify potential knowledge gaps, and iv) produce a manuscript based on the review findings for submission to a suitable peer-reviewed journal.

Given the 11-13 week timeframe, we do not expect a student to complete all the aims outlined above, however do expect they would complete the first aim, and possibly complete, or at least contribute, to aims ii and iii. Depending on the desires of the student, and the quality of their work, the student will be recognised as co-author on the subsequent published paper and their involvement beyond their initial 11-13 week commitment can be negotiated.

Myself and one of my PhD students, Luke Emerson, would provide support to the prospective student. We both have extensive experience performing systematic literature reviews and researching arboreal marsupials, particularly greater gliders.


Contact:
Prof Euan Ritchie at euan.ritchie@deakin.edu.au

(2)  Dr Adam Cardilini - Evaluating STEM eduVR Applications for Teaching
(Burwood campus)

Projects available for T3, 2021, T1, 2022 and T2, 2022

Project description: XR technologies hold significant promise for Science, Technology, Engineering, and Mathematics (STEM) education. In particularly, virtual reality (VR) provides opportunities to engage students with otherwise impossible, expensive, and dangerous learning experiences. Despite being a relatively new technology there are already dozens of STEM eduVR applications available which intend to support learning, however, the quality of the learning experiences vary considerably and may not achieve what they intend to. We are still in the early days of STEM eduVR development and figuring out how it can best be used. Recent research attempts to provide 'A Comprehensive Rubric for Evaluating EduVR'. This student researcher will use this rubric to evaluate the quality of STEM eduVR currently available (see attached document), identify gaps and highlight opportunities.

Suited for: This project is suited for students interested in science education and educational technology. The student will need strong communication skills, the ability for critical evaluation, and to work independently.

Contact: Dr Adam Cardilini at adam.cardilini@deakin.edu.au

(3)  Dr Nick Porch – Beetles in the Dandenongs (Burwood campus)

Projects available for T3, 2021, T1, 2022 and T2, 2022

Laboratory experience only – Contact Nick to discuss potential projects

Dr Nick Porch at nicholas.porch@deakin.edu.au

(4) Dr Mark Ziemann – Genomics

Projects are for students interested in genomics and have some experience with writing code or doing data analysis.

For more information contact:

Dr Mark Ziemann at m.ziemann@deakin.edu.au

(5) Dr Angela Ziebell (Burwood campus)

Projects on offer:

Longitudinal impact of careers learning in science students. Using Graduate Outcome Survey data from former Science students, you will look at the impact of a third year career development learning class on graduate outcomes. This work will initially include data analysis and gaining a strong understanding of the background literature including what the students are taught and why. This project could include interviews with graduates if there is time. This will include learning the statistical program SPSS and possibly NVivo (interviews and other qualitative data).

Learning about Indigenous Science for cultural competency. In this work students will analysis reflections written by student who took a unit called Indigenous Science. Students will either look at the reaction of students in the reflections after the initial cultural competency training which takes two weeks, or the final reflection from the whole unit. We are trying to map how students react to this learning in order to best design the learning to minimise unneeded stress and unproductive learning and maximise the impact.

For more information contact:

Dr Angela Ziebell at a.ziebell@deakin.edu.au

(6) Dr Liz Weldon – Palaeontology / Geoconservation (Burwood campus)

Projects available T1, 2022, T2, 2022

Research supervision capabilities in palaeontology, earth science, palaeobiogeography, palaeoecology, palaeoenvironmental analysis, and geoconservation.

Major themes:

1) Geoconservation:

  • Raise awareness of the significance of our geoheritage and geodiversity.
  • Develop regionally and culturally appropriate quantitative methodology to assess geosites and geoheritage for geoconservation. This is suitable for offshore students.

2) Palaeontology:

  • Taxonomic studies or quantitative analysis of marine macro-invertebrates applied to palaeobiogeography or palaeoecology.
  • The projects can be developed with Museum Victoria.

For more information contact:
Dr Liz Weldon
(l.weldon@deakin.edu.au)

(7) Prof Paul Francis – Chemistry (Waurn Ponds Campus)

Students that undertake SLE314 with our research group generally have completed (or plan to complete) undergraduate units in analytical chemistry (SLE213 and SLE316) and/or inorganic chemistry (SLE210 and SLE361). Current research project areas include:

  • Synthesis and evaluation of a new reagent for catalysis or chemical detection
  • Examining the sensitivity and selectivity of chemiluminescence reagents
  • Establishing the electrochemical and spectroscopic properties of new metal complexes

Our team includes Prof. Paul Francis, Dr Egan Doeven, Dr Emily Kerr, Dr Tim Connell and Dr David Hayne. Projects will be supervised by the most appropriate combination of staff within this team, with expertise spanning all areas of the proposed research.

For more information contact:

Prof Paul Francis at paul.francis@deakin.edu.au

(8) Dr Anne Turner – Stress Research

(School of Exercise and Nutrition – Burwood campus)

Watch the video about Anne’s research that was telecast on ABC iview “Ask the Doctor”

For more information contact:

Dr Anne Turner at anne.turner@deakin.edu.au

ORCID iD 0000-0002-0682-2860

Twitter @AnneITurner

  • Students would normally be expected to have a weighted average mark of 70% for all completed units, please contact the Unit Chair prior to enrolling in this unit.
  • Must be enrolled in S337, S382, S393, S398, S321, S323, S324, S320, S399, S394, S369, D311, D321, D351, D372, D331, or D329

At the end of your placement

You will be sent an evaluation form when your placement is confirmed (via email).  A copy of the evaluation form will also be forwarded to your supervisor for their information.  It is your responsibility to print off the evaluation form for completion.

Step 1 - Arrange a time to meet with your supervisor on the final day of your placement. Please complete the student column on the evaluation form prior to your meeting.

Step 2 - Discuss the evaluation at the arranged time with your supervisor, who will complete the relevant columns on the evaluation form.

Step 3 - Sign and date the evaluation form with your supervisor. The evaluation form is to be uploaded to the relevant drop box on the unit teaching site through DeakinSync by the end of week 10 of trimester.

What happens after my placement?

The placement is a hurdle requirement for your unit however within the unit (e.g. SLE225, SLE301, SLE390) there are other assessment requirements which you will be required to complete during the trimester of offer for your unit.

Now is the time to update your resume/CV with the experience completed and, if you wish ask your work placement supervisor to be a referee for you in the future.

Further information will be available on the unit teaching site through DeakinSync for the relevant unit.  Class attendance during trimester for SLE301 and SLE390 is compulsory.

Frequently asked questions

When are the assessment items due?

Assessment items due dates will be specified within the Unit Cloud site once your enrolment in the unit becomes active. Please refer to the unit teaching site through DeakinSync for submission dates for your unit.

Is there an evaluation form to be completed at the end of my placement?

Yes. It is your responsibility to organise a meeting with your supervisor on your final day of placement to complete the evaluation form. It is your responsibility to print the evaluation form and bring it to the meeting. If enrolled in SLE301 or SLE390, please ensure that you have completed the student column.

On your final day of placement your supervisor will complete any relevant columns of the evaluation form with you. Once both you and your supervisor have completed and signed the evaluation form it must be uploaded to the relevant drop box on the unit teaching site through DeakinSync by the end of week 10 of trimester.

A copy of the evaluation form is sent to your supervisor for their information when your placement is confirmed.

What happens if I do not submit my evaluation form?

Your result from the unit cannot be finalised until the evaluation form has been submitted confirming the hours you completed and with a satisfactory evaluation of performance

Once I have finished my placement, is there anything else I need to do?

After your placement has finished, you will need to complete the assessment task related to your placement. Further information will be available on the unit teaching site through DeakinSync during the trimester of offer for your unit.

Contact us

For more information regarding the WIL Program, or if you have any questions, please contact:

SEBE WIL Team
Email: les-professionalpractice@deakin.edu.au

Drop-in sessions are available to SEBE students to provide advice and answer any questions you may have.

SEBE WIL Online Zoom Drop-in Session

Join us every Monday from 2:00 - 3:00pm (AEST) via Zoom
(use passcode: 72335852)

SEBE WIL Face-to-face Consultations

Face-to-face consultations will run on Tuesdays and Thursdays by booking only, at both student centrals of Burwood (building N/M atrium, level 1) and Waurn Ponds (building JB) Campus.

Please book a one-on-one consultation with the WIL team.

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