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College of Indigenous Futures, Education and the Arts


Frequently asked questions in relation to placement

What is considered a mainstream school?
Mainstream schools are those that teach students across all areas of curriculum i.e. are not specialist. The schools must teach approved Australian curriculum.

What does PO and PU mean?
PO indicates Placement Ongoing, PU indicates Pass Ungraded and finalisation of the unit.

Do I have to complete my placement as per the dates on the CDU calendar (found on course page)?
Yes. The calendars have been organised to align with the unit requirements, course guidelines and in consultation with school representatives. It is important to complete your placement within the dates shown on the calendar.

What if I want to start my placement earlier or my host school wants me to attend on different dates?
You are not permitted to commence your placement prior to the start of the semester of enrolment for that unit. You may, however, extend your placement to start later. 
Options for more flexibility must be approved through the Office of Professional Experience and Placements prior to commencing. We understand that schools may suggest a particular period in which they can host you, and where possible we try to accommodate this. Do NOT simply arrange dates with your school outside the schedule as they may not fit in with unit and course requirements. The Practicum Date Variation Approval Request form is available on the Placement page of the InSchool website. Include a detailed explanation and supporting documentation.

Do I need to complete my Professional Experience placements in order?
You must complete your Professional Experience placements in sequence (see Professional Experience Handbook). If you have credits for some units you will need to discuss any variation with the Director for Professional Experience and/or your course coordinator.

I live in the Northern Territory but am enrolled externally. Where should I look to complete my placement?
All enrolled students, internal and external, living within 80kms of Darwin, Alice Springs or Katherine, complete Professional Experience in Teaching Schools in these locations. This Professional Experience is organised by the Placement Team, and students are not to contact schools until the placement has been confirmed.

Can I organise my own placement? 
Professional Experience is organised by the Professional Experience office. Students may suggest schools that are conveniently located to their place of residence when they complete the nomination. Students are not to contact schools until the placement has been confirmed.

What if a school at which I can complete my placement requirements cannot be found?
In circumstances where a school cannot be identified for your placement, it is possible for us to allow you to defer the placement until the following semester. In these instances you will need to complete the academic components and we will enter a Practicum Ongoing (PO) grade that can be updated once you have completed the placement. You have a total of two enrolment periods to complete the placement component. Ensure this is discussed with the InSchool office.

I am not in a position to complete full weeks. What are my options?
Students should follow the breakdown of days and weeks required as indicated in the unit requirements and weekly guidelines available on the InSchool site.

I am not on placement and the first assignment is due, what do I do?
Your academic assignments are not dependent on your having started your professional experience. While there may be benefits in doing so, any delay in starting should not impact your ability to complete the academic tasks.

What happens if I miss a day of my placement?
Missed days will need to be made up at the completion of the professional experience with days agreed upon by the school and your mentor teacher.

How and where do I submit my in-school tasks (i.e. NOT academic requirements)?
These are completed in your school and should be discussed with your mentor teacher. These tasks are NOT submitted to CDU for marking.
Your assessment forms are to be returned to the Office of Professional Experience and Placements.

What should I do if my Working With Children Card / Police Check/Clearances do not arrive before I am due to commence my placement?
Please see your placement school to discuss if you are allowed to start your placement while you wait for it to arrive. In some cases schools will accept a receipt of your application while you are awaiting issue. This decision is completely up to the schools and differs in each state / territory. Please also email InSchool if your placement is delayed due to this.

How can I contact you to get information about placements?
T: +61 8 8946 6602