The University of Newcastle, Australia
Available in 2019

Course handbook


Through this course students will engage directly with organizations which require social science input into their policy, planning and evaluation practices. This direct experience will expose students to the discourses and practices of researchers and managers and will require that students consider the many complex factors which influence research and policy. Under supervision, students will locate and undertake an 80-hour work placement with appropriate organisations involved in social research, education or community service.

Availability2019 Course Timetables


  • Semester 2 - 2019


  • Semester 2 - 2019

Learning outcomes

On successful completion of the course students will be able to:

1. Apply social science skills directly.

2. Critically set objectives and evaluate outcomes

3. Design and carry out small scale research and evaluation projects as required to a professional standard.

4. Demonstrate professional knowledge gained through experiential learning by undertaking social science tasks.

5. Critically reflect on the issues facing social scientists in the workplace.


The course comprises activities based on describing and critically reflecting on one or two major placement activities and discussing and analysing the role of the social scientist in policy, management and research.

The student's willingness to take responsibility, be resourceful, show initiative and willingness to complete assigned tasks will be reflected in assessment through the debriefing process with the organisations involved and through the student's own critical reflection.

Students will

  1. Apply for, secure and complete one or two appropriate placement opportunities.
  2. Collaborate to plan, carry out and report on an appropriate needs assessment, research project or evalution.
  3. Complete an 80 hour placement with an organisation which requires social scientific expertise.
  4. Record, report and critically reflect on placement experiences.
  5. Discuss aspects of social science practice with peers and commissioning agencies.
  6. Describe and analyse issues relating to real world research and practice.


This course is only available to students enrolled in the Bachelor of Social Science and associated combined programs.

Students must have completed 60 units of SOCS courses including pre-requisite courses to enrol in this course.

Assumed knowledge

60 units of the SOCS core, including SOCS2300 Social Science Ethics and either SOCS2400 Social Science Research Methods or SOCS3200 Social Science Research Project.

Assessment items

Written Assignment: Essays/Written Assignments

Report: Reports

Compulsory Requirements

In order to pass this course, each student must complete ALL of the following compulsory requirements:

General Course Requirements:

  • Practicum: Attendance Requirement - Students must attend a minimum number of these sessions. - "Course documentation, including placement agreement, ethics form (compulsory) and project approval (where relevant) from the placement organisation. 20% before project commences. Submission of an ethics form and approval is a compulsory requirement to comply with the Course Related Ethics Approval. Students who do not submit the form and receive approval cannot meet the course requirements and will not be assessed."

Contact hours

Callaghan and Ourimbah


Face to Face Off Campus 80 hour(s) per Term Full Term


Face to Face On Campus 2 hour(s) per Week for 4 Weeks