Will RMIT find me a Cooperative Education placement or do I need to find my own?

Securing a suitable Cooperative Education placement is ultimately your own responsibility and students must secure their own placements. We can help! For more information, Click Here.

Once registered, you'll have access to some Co-op roles advertised on CareerHub and you'll be invited to events and workshops to help you prepare to apply for roles and be successful in your job hunt.

When am I eligible to undertake my Co-op placement and what happens if I fail a course this semester?

You are eligible to undertake your Co-op placement in your third year of studies, after you have completed 14-16 courses. This therefore includes the courses you would be currently undertaking. If you happen to fail a course in the semester prior to commencing your placement, you will need to contact our team as soon as possible as this may impact your eligibility. Effectively, if you have completed under 16 courses before placement, and you want to graduate in four years, you will need to plan when you will undertake all your relevant courses. You may need to undertake courses over the summer to 'make-up' for those failed.

Note: please consult Business Central for further information and clarity.

Are there certain requirements that a role has to meet to be suitable as a Co-op role?

Yes. Whatever the name of the positions you apply for, they must satisfy the following:

  • Full time (35 to 38 hours /week)
  • 12 months in duration (8 months if pre-approved)
  • Paid in accordance with relevant industrial legislation, advice provided by the Fair Work Commission. Click here for more information on the current minimum wage. On average Co-op students are paid $38,000/annum.
  • Duties must be in line with your degree program

Have you secured a placement? Click here

If you do not follow these steps, your application WILL NOT BE APPROVED as an RMIT WIL Activity and you will need to submit it again.

As an international student can I participate in Cooperative Education?

Yes. As it is a requirement of your program to complete Co-op, you are allowed to (and must) work full-time for 12 months in a Co-op role. Your student visa allows for this. The standard international student visa working requirement (40 hours per fortnight), is separate from this working requirement. For further information on working while studying as an international student, please visit http://bit.ly/1SM3ZIG

What tuition fees are applicable to Cooperative Education?

Whilst undertaking the Cooperative Education Program you pay the equivalent of 25 per cent of your normal fees. If you have any questions about your student tax invoice please contact the Hub.

Are there any assessments during my Cooperative Education placement?

Yes. There are assessment tasks that need to be completed. The Cooperative Education placement is a major, formal academic component of your program. You must read your respective course guides for further information. The WIL Academic responsible for your School will get in touch after you have started your placement to discuss assessments.

Can I undertake my Cooperative Education placement interstate or internationally?

Yes, as long as it meets the Cooperative Education placement requirements. If you are interested in completing your placement interstate or internationally contact bus.wil@rmit.edu.au to discuss further.

Can I study during my Cooperative Education placement?

Studying or overloading during your Cooperative placement is highly discouraged. The aim of the Cooperative placement is to be immersed in full-time work and to gain hands-on work experience in your field of study. You will also be undertaking the WIL & WEI units. Studying on top of this will add unnecessary pressure on both the student and employer. Extreme exceptional circumstances may be considered. You will need to seek written approval by both your workplace supervisor and school. Together with your strong reasons for overloading, this is then forwarded to the Director of Undergraduate Programs for final approval. It is then up to you to speak with Business Central (business-student@rmit.edu.au) to proceed. Please contact our team at bus.wil@rmit.edu.au for this process.

Note: Students are not permitted to undertake any university subjects whilst employed as an Intern at Holden. In the case of Co-op students, you will only be allowed to undertake WIL subjects and no additional units during your placement.

Can I convert a part-time job into a Cooperative Education placement?

Yes. You are strongly encouraged to find your own placement utilising existing networks. If you are able to secure a position with your current employer you must:

  1. Complete a self placement submission on InPlace ensuring that you: upload a document on the company letterhead (e.g: Position description, contract, letter of offer) confirming your duties, full time status, the duration of the placement and the remuneration.

  2. Once your position has been approved by the WIL Academic, complete and sign the WIL Agreement

  3. Update your work contact details on InPlace to ensure you are contactable.

If you do not follow these steps, your application WILL NOT BE APPROVED as an RMIT WIL Activity and you will need to submit it again.

What happens if I am offered more than one position for my Cooperative Education placement?

If you have been offered more than one Cooperative Education placement and you would like time to consider each offer, it is reasonable and professional to ask each employer for a 24-hour period to consider their offer. Once you have decided which one to accept, you should notify both the company you are accepting employment with and the company you do not take up employment with of your decision out of courtesy.

If you are still unsure how to proceed, please contact the WIL Team for support via email on bus.wil@rmit.edu.au.

Am I required to be paid a salary while undertaking Cooperative Education?

Yes. Students MUST be paid at least the minimum wage in accordance with Fair Work Australia. For overseas placements, you must be paid at least the minimum wage in accordance with that country's pay and wage legislation. Click Here for more information on the current minimum wage in Australia.

What happens if I don't find a placement?

Securing a placement can be challenging but it's important to keep at it. The experience you gain on your placement will be invaluable when seeking employment after graduation. You must explore your own network; do your parents have any friends with businesses who may want to employ you?

You could also print out your CV, as well as the Employer Guidelines and go to businesses in person and introduce yourself and explain what Co-op is and ask if they would like to take you on. Looking on the job website 'Seek' is a place students find placements.

We also recommend visiting the Career Development webpage and having a look at the Careers Toolkit available at https://www.rmit.edu.au/students/life-and-work-opportunities/jobs-and-career-advice. The toolkit provides some useful advice for resume building, interviews and career development.

If you are not successful in securing a placement , you will still have the chance to either register for the following semester or to transfer to the 3 year degree (depending on how many courses you have successfully completed).

You should contact Business Central to explore your options and email bus.wil@rmit.edu.au.

Once I finish my placement, can I continue my employment within the company?

Yes - in many circumstances, students are offered on-going part-time or casual work upon completion of their placement. However, we advise to consider the impact on your studies. If your employer wishes you to continue full-time employment you need to consider the impact on the completion date of your degree as many courses are only offered during the day.

Please note as an international onshore student you only have the option of working the maximum number of part-time hours according to your visa and continuing your studies full-time.

Can I delay my placement?

It may be possible to delay your placement. You need to ensure that you have courses left to complete other than Design Project courses in your 4th year (these must be completed consecutively after your placement) OR enrol in a part time study load or take a leave of absence if you do not have enough remaining courses to complete.