2000-8-1Work-Integrated Learning

Responsible Executive:
Vice-President, Academic & Student Success
Director, Student Services
Issue Date:
August 15, 2016
Supersedes Date:
January 18, 2018
Replaces:
Formerly titled Co-operative Education & Internships
Last Review:
June 23, 2021
Last Revision:
June 23, 2021

Upon request, the college will provide a copy of this policy in an alternate format.

Lambton College is committed to delivering programs that meet the needs of students and employers. To this end, Lambton College includes a co-operative education or internship component in those programs in which the work experience will contribute to student development and success.

Policy

  1. The College will provide a work-integrated learning (WIL) component in every program of study in which the experience will meaningfully contribute to student development, learning and success in achieving the program learning outcomes.
  2. The WIL component may vary by program in its nature, extent, format, structure and requirements for success. The WIL component in each program will be optimized for student learning and success, and efficient and effective program operation.
  3. Within any degree program with a WIL component, the WIL component and learning experience will:
    1. be appropriate to the field of study,
    2. have articulated and appropriate learning outcomes that contribute to the attainment of the program learning outcomes,
    3. be supervised by both a College representative with relevant academic credentials and an employer/agency member, who will collaborate in guiding and evaluating the student’s performance,
    4. provide an opportunity and structure for a required, submitted student reflection on the WIL experience relative to the program learning outcomes. At a minimum, this component will include a student evaluation of the WIL experience, to be submitted to the program coordinator or faculty member assigned to the course.
  4. In a degree program, the WIL experience will amount to no less than 14 weeks of full-time equivalent work (420 hours) in one or multiple blocks, as appropriate to achieving the program learning outcomes.
    1. In programs that must meet or seek to meet external or professional requirements, the WIL component will be guided in structure and duration by those requirements.
    2. WIL co-op and internship experiences will typically be paid experiences. Clinical and field placements are typically not paid experiences.
  5. The WIL component in a program will use one of four models and be guided by the relevant following section of this policy. The four models are 1. Co-operative education (Co-op), 2. Internship, 3. Clinical Placement, 4. Field Placement.

Co-operative Education and Internships

  1. A co-operative education (co-op) program formally integrates work experience in an employment setting into a student’s academic studies. A co-op program begins with an academic term; work and academic terms are then scheduled in a pre-determined sequence.
    1. A mandatory co-op program requires the successful completion of the co-op component or identified WIL alternative in order for the student to graduate from the program.
    2. An optional co-op program provides the opportunity for the student to engage in a co-op experience, but does not require completion of the co-op component for graduation from the program.
  2. An internship program formally integrates work experience in an employment setting with a student’s academic studies. An internship program begins with an academic term; academic terms and the work experiences then occur concurrently in a pre-determined sequence.
  3. In order for a program to be recognized by the College as a co-op or internship program and for the student’s work experience to be recognized for College credit, the following requirements must be met.
    1. The student’s work experience position is approved, as a suitable learning position, by the program-relevant co-op advisor in the Co-op & Career Services department.
    2. During the work experience, the student is actively engaged in productive work that actively engages the student.
    3. The student’s experience on the job is monitored by the College. See Co-Operative Education and Internship Procedures.
    4. The student’s performance on the job is supervised and evaluated by the employer.
    5. The student’s grade for the work experience course is determined by the Co-op & Career Services co-op advisor with consideration of the employer’s evaluation and feedback. In degree programs, the student’s grade for the co-op or internship experience is assigned by a program faculty member with relevant academic credentials and with consideration of the employer’s evaluation and feedback.
    6. A co-op work term must consist of a minimum of 12 weeks and 420 hours of work.
    7. An internship work experience runs concurrently with an academic term, and must consist of a minimum of 160 hours of work over the length of the academic term.
  4. To ensure the quality and viability of a work-integrated learning program, and the work-experience component within it, Schools contemplating the development or revision of a program with a co-op, internship or Work-Integrated Learning Project must comply with the following:
    1. The School Dean, or designate, must present the plans, including rationale and justification, for the development of a co-op or internship program or the revision of the work experience component of any existing program to the Manager of the Co-op & Career Services department for sign-off before presentation to the College Curriculum Committee.
    2. The School Dean, or designate, must undertake a feasibility study, in conjunction with the Co-op & Career Services department, to determine the willingness of potential employers to hire co-op or internship students for the proposed program. The study must consider the market context, with attention to existing and possibly competing work experience programs in the College and other institutions.
    3. The proposed or revised co-op or internship program must include an employment-preparation course approved by the Manager of the Co-op & Career Services department.
  5. Students enrolled in a co-op or internship program are governed by the following statements.
    1. Students enrolled in a co-operative education or internship program will pay a mandatory fee to cover the costs of employer relations development, job development, job-readiness preparation and co-op service administration.
    2. Co-op and internship employment positions are not guaranteed in any program. Securing a co-op or internship position is frequently a competitive process and, ultimately, the responsibility of the student.
    3. Students are required to follow the academic and work sequence presented in the relevant program map.
    4. To be eligible to apply for a co-op or internship during the recruitment term, the student must:
      1. have successfully completed all courses required by the program for the terms prior to the recruitment term, and
      2. be enrolled in all courses required for the recruitment term, and
      3. have a minimum program cumulative GPA of 2.0, or greater as required for specific programs (refer to program map for program specific information).
    5. To be eligible to participate in a co-op or internship position, the student must:
      1. have successfully completed all required courses for all terms preceding the work term;
      2. have a minimum program cumulative GPA of 2.0, or greater as required for specific programs (refer to program map for program specific information); and
      3. meet any additional academic prerequisites established for specific programs.
    6. Exceptions to the above (10d, 10e) requirements for eligibility to apply for or participate in a co-op or internship experience may be permitted in extenuating circumstances. Any exception must be approved by the Department Manager, after consultation with the relevant Dean. The preparation of the student for the co-op/internship experience, the likelihood of the student’s success in the co-op/internship experience, and the safety of the student in the co-op/internship experience cannot be compromised by any exception granted.
    7. A student considering or entering into a co-op and internship experience must be aware of and comply with the Co-operative Education & Internship Procedures.
    8. It is the responsibility of the student to meet any employment requirements, such as, but not limited to, a visa, work permit, immunizations, security background check, medical clearance.
    9. When offered a position by a potential employer, the student must accept or decline the offer promptly (within one business day of the offer). An acceptance, including a verbal acceptance, is considered a binding contract, and must be honoured. Failure to honour an acceptance will result in a No Pass (NP) grade for the course.
    10. A student may not withdraw from a co-op or internship course. Withdrawing from a co-op or internship will result in a No Pass (NP) grade - not a Withdrawal (W) grade. In exceptional cases, because of extenuating job or personal circumstances, the program-relevant advisor at the Co-op & Career Services department may permit and process a withdrawal with a (W) grade.
    11. A student must complete all requirements established for the co-op or internship course and the work experience, including the agreed upon contract dates and the required minimum hours, in order to complete successfully the course.
    12. A student registered in a co-op or internship course will be awarded either a P (pass) or NP (no pass) grade, which will be recorded on the student’s transcript.

Clinical and Field Placements

  1. A clinical placement is defined as a workplace-setting learning experience, usually in a health or medical agency, constituting the whole or part of a course, in which the student is under the direct supervision and oversight of a) a College faculty member with the appropriate academic credential or b) an agency employee who has relevant vocational experience and knowledge and contribute to and monitor the student’s achievement of the expected learning outcomes. The College faculty member evaluates the student’s learning and achievement of outcomes and assigns a grade with consideration of input from the agency employee.
  2. A field placement is defined as a workplace-setting learning experience, usually in a community agency, constituting the whole or part of a course, in which the student is under the direct supervision and oversight of an agency employee, who has relevant vocational experience and knowledge and contributes to and monitors the student’s achievement of the expected learning outcomes. The agency employee provides significant input concerning the student’s learning, achievement of outcomes and performance to the faculty member who will assign the student’s final grade.
  3. For a clinical or field placement, the program must meet the following requirements.
    1. The placement must be recognized and identified by the program as a suitable, program-relevant placement and learning experience.
    2. During the placement, the student is actively engaged in learning activities that contribute to the realization of the learning outcomes.
    3. The program will establish and publish for each placement experience:
      1. formal learning outcomes,
      2. requirements for successful completion,
      3. expectations for behaviour in the clinical setting,
      4. student rights and responsibilities pertaining to the placement,
      5. College expectations of the placement agency,
      6. a structure for the evaluation of the student, and
      7. a structured orientation to the placement.
    4. The student’s performance in the clinical or field placement is supervised by the employer and College faculty with the appropriate academic credential to ensure the safety of the student and clients, and an effective learning experience.
    5. The student’s performance in the clinical or field placement is evaluated by the employer and/or College faculty on a continuous basis. The student’s grade is determined by a faculty member with relevant academic credentials, with due consideration of the employer’s input.
  4. Students enrolling in a clinical or field placement are required to:
    1. follow the program map with respect to the sequence of multiple placements.
    2. meet all placement prerequisites, including academic prerequisites and agency requirements, before beginning a placement.
    3. have a minimum program cumulative GPA, or have successfully completed prerequisite courses, as specified and published by the student’s program.
    4. perform at a level and behave in a manner that is consistent with the safety of clients, fellow workers, other students, and the student, and that is appropriate socially and professionally as determined by the agency supervisor and faculty member. Conducive to, and a prerequisite for, appropriate performance and behaviour is the requirement for the student to be fit to practice – inclusive of physical, mental and emotional health and any other considerations identified by the College or agency – which will be determined by the College or the agency or their representatives. Failure of the student to meet this expectation will result in the removal of the student from the placement setting.

Appeals

  1. A student seeking to appeal any decision arising from or with respect to this policy or the work-integrated learning experience should refer to the Appeal of an Academic Decision (2000-1-13) policy.

Definitions

Recruitment Term
The term during which the student is applying for a work experience in a subsequent work term.
Work Term
The term during which the student is engaged and enrolled in a work experience.

For questions or concerns regarding policies, please contact the policy sponsor. See the phone list for contact info.

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