Information about the Department of Screen and Media Industry Placements

The Screen and Media Placement topics are professional training topics that allow students to gain professional experience in the creative arts, screen and media industries. Topics are offered to 3rd and 4th year students and count towards completion of the degree. The Placement is intended to develop and enhance student knowledge of industry, professional practice, reasoning and judgment, oral communication skills, written communication skills, problem solving skills, and skills in forming and maintaining effective working relationships. To earn course credit for the Placement, students will complete 120 hours with an employer, and some assessable written work. Placements can be established in the form of a project or a position. A project title might be "to compile an electronic press kit" and a position title might be "assistant to the editor."

How to Arrange a Placement
Placements between students and Industry Partners may be student- or industry-initiated and usually take one of three forms –

  • The student approaches an Industry Partner directly to arrange a Placement. Students need to advise the Topic Coordinator of their interest in particular companies and how they plan to approach the potential Industry Partner before making any contact. It is important for ongoing relations with our generous Industry Partners that we know how many students are approaching individual businesses for Placements.
  • The Topic Coordinator approaches an Industry Partner on behalf of the student.
  •  The Industry Partner sends in a description of a Placement available for a third year or honours student majoring in Screen and Media and it is posted on the Department of Screen and Media website. Interested students will then select a posted Placement, consult with the Topic Coordinator and then ring the Industry Partner for an interview.

Whichever way the Placement is initiated, the Industry Partner has the option to select or refuse the student, preferably after an interview. We consider the interview process a valuable learning experience for our students and a necessary safety valve for our Partners. Students need to think about what they are hoping to get out of the Placement and to research the companies or organizations they are interested in working with. Once a student has identified a potential Industry Partner/s, at least six weeks lead time is required before the start of the Placement so that the required paperwork can be finalized.

Check the Current Placements page

Industry Partners
Past Industry Partners include: Adelaide Film Festival, Argon Design, Australian Broadcasting Corporation, Australian International Documentary Conference, Best FX, CDW Studios, Channel 9, Danger 5 Productions (Dinosaur Worldwide), Design Lab, Ethos Media, Epic Films, FCT Flames, Gallipoli Pictures, Helpmann Academy, Icarus Designs, Ink Pots Arts Inc, Kojo, Living Stories, Media Resource Centre, Monkeystack, Picture Hire Australia, Passel Media, Player Attack, Red Bikini, Resin, Short Focus Films, Triptych Pictures, Urtext Film Productions, Wakefield Press, Wombat Studios, 57 Films Pty Ltd

Please note: there are only three formal classes for this topic per semester. Students are also required to arrange meetings with the Topic Coordinator during the semester to discuss individual Placements.

Placement students are covered by the University’s Insurance. The student cannot receive payment for this Placement (or else the insurance is void). The University's personal accident policy covers the Student for disablement occurring whilst on field expeditions or practical Placement anywhere in Australia, New Zealand and in Territorial waters. The University's public liability and professional indemnity policies provide cover for the Student whilst on Placement but do not indemnify the Placement Provider.

After Placement Descriptions have been approved by the Topic Coordinator, Dr Alison Wotherspoon, a contract is prepared and sent to the industry partner to sign and complete the details of the Placement. The contract is then signed by the student, the Topic Coordinator and Faculty. Placement administration is organised with Ellen Giles, Humanities Work Integrated Learning Administrator – or phone: 8201 3034. Please contact Ellen for further information regarding the contract or insurance.

The Topic Coordinator assesses the student for their mark (which is either a Non Graded Pass or Fail) and maintains ongoing relationships with the industry partners.  

Students are also required to complete Preplace as part of this topic. The web address for self-registration in Pre-Place is Students can self-enrol in Pre-Place from this site

In addition to the 120 hours on the job, we require that students develop a set of goals with the industry partner or supervisor from the partnering organisation. This ensures that both parties are clear on what is expected through the Placement description and the student's Goals Statement. The students meet with the Topic Coordinator, Alison Wotherspoon, during the course of the Placement for progress reports and discussion. These seminars allow the students to share work experiences with one another and collectively sort through the various challenges.

At the end of the semester the student and the Industry Partner both submit evaluations. Students are also required to keep a journal about the Placement so they can keep track on a daily basis of what they do on the job, what they learn, what was challenging, contacts they make etc. This journal allows for them to reflect on their experience and professional development.

Topic coordinator
Dr Alison Wotherspoon,
(08) 8201 2290