Professional Experience Intervention and Support Policy

Purpose

The Professional Experience Intervention and Support Policy provides a framework to effectively manage and monitor the early identification, intervention and support of students during professional experience.

Scope

This policy applies to all students enrolled in a Faculty of Education coursework program which has professional experience requirements.

Policy Statement

1. General principles

Professional experience provides students with an opportunity to develop the knowledge and skills required to become successful graduates in professional settings.

The Faculty of Education supports the early identification and support of students undertaking professional experience who are at risk of unsatisfactory performance.

Sometimes students have difficulties and/or challenges as they progress through professional experience placements. The support of the provider-based staff is generally sufficient to assist the student improve performance and meet placement requirements.

Where this is not the case, Monash University staff will work with provider-based staff to take appropriate and collaborative action.

Students displaying unsatisfactory progress requiring early intervention will be mentored through the following sequential process of intervention and support:

  • Notification of Concern
  • Inability to Proceed

2. Normal progress

Monitoring of performance and providing timely, constructive feedback and support is important for the development of knowledge and skills required to obtain satisfactory performance in professional experience. It is a requirement of placement that provider-based staff meet regularly with students during professional experience to:

  • Reflect on and outline successes and/or failures and identify underlying reasons;
  • Provide feedback, highlighting and discussing areas of strength and areas that are not yet satisfactory; and
  • Make suggestions and provide strategies for improvement.

It is the responsibility of the student to document all feedback obtained.

Following feedback, students are required to incorporate suggestions into subsequent professional experience planning, delivery and behaviours. The provider-based staff will monitor and advise the student of their progress against areas requiring improvement.

If the student’s performance is satisfactory then no further action is required. However, if the provider-based staff believe that the student’s progress is still not satisfactory, they are required to initiate one of the following intervention and support strategies.

Notification of Concern: to be implemented when:

  1. provider-based staff assess that the student has the capacity to improve their performance with further intervention and support; or
  2. provider-based staff believe that the student may be at risk of failing the placement.

Inability to Proceed: to be implemented when:

  1. a gross breach of professional behaviour has occurred and the provider wishes to immediately cease placement; or
  2. the student has failed a placement.

3. Notification of Concern

If a provider has concerns regarding the capabilities or lack of development of skills of a student during professional experience, and which has not been resolved through the usual mentoring process, then a Notification of Concern must be implemented. The Notification of Concern process will involve collaboration between provider-based and Monash University staff.

There are three broad categories of concern:

  • Knowledge and skill (e.g. lack of ability to understand material, inadequate planning)
  • Communication (e.g. poor interpersonal skills, inability to communicate effectively with students or clients)
  • Behavioural (e.g. failure to engage, lack of teamwork, lack of timeliness, inappropriate use of technology)

As soon as the provider has reported the concerns, the Professional Experience Office (PEO) will loge the details of the report into the Notice of Concern register and will commence the Notification of Concern procedures.

For placements of more than two weeks’ duration, a notification of concern should be lodged no later than the Wednesday before the last week of professional experience. With the exception of a final placement to course complete, if a Notification of Concern is lodged too late to ensure the processes of intervention and support can be followed, the student’s result will be a withheld outcome. A final result will be determined in the first half of their subsequent professional experience. The Professional Experience Tutor (PET) of the subsequent professional experience will be advised by the Professional Experience Advisor (PEA) of the areas of concern noted on the Professional Placement Assessment Report and documented on a Development Support Plan prior to the commencement of the next placement. In the case of a final placement to course complete, the PEO will arrange a subsequent placement to be held at a time and duration as nominated by the PEA.

Students may also self-identify that they have an area of concern that needs further support outside of the provider-staff. They must contact the PET who will to report the concern to the PEO. The same principles will be followed regardless if the concern is lodged by a student or a provider. PETs and PEAs can lodge a notification of concern on behalf of a student if appropriate.

Ongoing monitoring and feedback, early intervention and remedial strategies ensure that, whatever the final result, the student has been given timely and documented advice on problems and has had adequate opportunities to address these problems.

4. Inability to proceed

Where a placement is deemed unsatisfactory due to gross misconduct, the placement will be immediately ceased by the PEA until an outcome can be provided under the provisions of Part 7 of the Monash University (Council) Regulations.

Where a placement is deemed unsatisfactory after Notification of Concern procedures have been followed, the student will be required to respond to the Notice of Referral and Hearing request during the end of year Academic Progress cycle. All documentation related to the placement (ie. Professional Placement Assessment Form and Development Support Plan) will form part of the evidence considered during Academic Progress proceedings.

The decision of the Academic Progress proceedings will determine if a student is permitted to return in a subsequent academic year in the existing course and undertake a further placement, or is excluded from the course and the University.

Supporting policies

Part 7 of the Monash University (Council) Regulations.

Supporting procedures

Notification of Concern (Attached)

Responsibility for implementation

Associate Dean (Education)
Directors, Professional Experience
Manager, Professional Experience

Status

New

Key stakeholders

Professional Placements Sub-Committee (disestablished)
Program Management Sub-Committees
Education Portfolio

Endorsement body

Name: Education Committee
Meeting: 3/14
Date: 6 June 2014
Agenda item: 7.1

Approval body

Name: Faculty Executive Committee
Meeting: 6/14
Date: 8 July 2014
Agenda item: 7.3

Date effective

Units with a census date on or after 1 July 2014

Review date

1 January 2016

Policy owner

Associate Dean (Education)

Policy author

Director, Professional Experience
Manager, Professional Experience
Manager, Admissions & Student Services

Content enquiries

Manager, Professional Experience


Notification of Concern procedure

Notification of Concern will proceed as following:

  1. The Professional Experience Office (PEO) will be provided with a Notification of Concern.
  2. The PEO will check if the student has had intervention support through a Notification of Concern within the past 12 months as recorded on the Notification of Concern Register. If not, continue to step 3. If yes, escalate to step 11.
  3. The PEO will note the details of the Notification of Concern in an email and forward this in an email to the Professional Experience Adviser (PEA) ccing the Professional Experience Tutor (PET) and relevant provider-based staff.
  4. The PET will email the student and the provider-based staff advising a Notification of Concern has been lodged and arrange a meeting initially with the student. If required, a meeting may be held with the provider-based staff and the student at the placement location.
  5. The areas of concern must be made clear to the student and provider at each meeting. A discussion of strategies with the provider and student to address the identified area(s) of concern is required. This will be documented in a Development Support Plan and will be signed by the PET and the student.
  6. Observation of the student by Monash and/or other provider staff may be required and will be arranged by negotiation between Monash staff and provider staff.
  7. The provider-based staff member will monitor the performance of the student according to the details recorded in a Development Support Plan for a further period of time as agreed in the Development Support Plan.
  8. If after the allowed period of time the student has demonstrated sufficient improvement, the student will complete the remainder of the placement as per the original requirements. The student will be awarded a final grade (PGO) based on the Development Support Plan, the placement assessment form returned by the provider, and the assessment of the PET.
  9. If after the allowed period of time the student has not demonstrated sufficient improvement, the provider-based staff member must contact the PET immediately who in turn will advise the PEO and PEA.
  10. The PEA will email the student and the provider-based staff advising that the student is at risk of failing the placement.
  11. The PEA or nominee will arrange to observe the student paying particular attention to the areas of risk identified. If deemed appropriate by the PEA or nominee and the provider-based staff, the student may continue with the remainder of their placement as per the original requirements. The student will be awarded a final grade (PGO or NGO) based on the Development Support Plan, the placement assessment form returned by the provider, and the assessment of the PEA/PET.
  12. If the PEA determines that the student’s placement is unsatisfactory, the placement can be immediately cancelled and the student awarded a final grade (NGO). Details of the unsatisfactory outcomes and supporting documentation will be forwarded to the following:
    1. Professional Experience Office
    2. Director, Professional Experience
    3. Student Adviser
    4. Secretary, Academic Progress Committee