Social work e-placements during Covid-19: learnings of staff and students

Zuchowski, Ines, Collingwood, Helen, Croaker, Sandra, Bentley-Davey, Jo, Grentell, Melissa, and Rytkönen, Finola (2021) Social work e-placements during Covid-19: learnings of staff and students. Australian Social Work, 74 (3). pp. 373-386.

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This paper describes and explores e-placements that engaged social work students in semester 1 of 2020 due to placement disruption after the Covid-19 pandemic unfolded. The term e-placement describes a placement undertaken off-site from the placement organisation or agency. Students at James Cook University [JCU], Queensland, Australia, who could not continue in onsite placements were offered the opportunity to participate in a Community Connector Project [CCP] to complete their placement. The aims of the project were to provide an online supported placement experience in order to deliver a comprehensive and interactive learning experience for students to meet the learning outcomes of a field education experience, work with the community to explore community needs during the pandemic, share and distribute existing information and resources, and/- or develop further information and resources. Twenty students chose to participate in the CCP. The project included bi-weekly meetings, small group and individual work. This paper was written collaboratively between field education staff, students and a service provider. It presents practice reflections on the project, its outcomes, challenges and learning. Implications for education practice are drawn. Implication Statement • Students in e-placements can feel overwhelmed and isolated and need targeted support and rich opportunities for collaboration and exchange; • E-placements can be valuable learning opportunities; • E-placements are resource intensive if student learning and safety are to be prioritised.

Item ID: 65837
Item Type: Article (Research - C1)
ISSN: 1447-0748
Keywords: Field education; students; field education staff; partnership; Covid-19; remote placements; e-placements; community; simulated learning.
Copyright Information: © 2021 Australian Association of Social Workers. In accordance with the publisher's policies, the Author Accepted Manuscript of this paper is available Open Access from ResearchOnline@JCU from 20 April 2022.
Date Deposited: 02 Feb 2021 00:14
FoR Codes: 44 HUMAN SOCIETY > 4409 Social work > 440903 Social program evaluation @ 100%
SEO Codes: 93 EDUCATION AND TRAINING > 9301 Learner and Learning > 930102 Learner and Learning Processes @ 40%
93 EDUCATION AND TRAINING > 9303 Curriculum > 930302 Syllabus and Curriculum Development @ 30%
93 EDUCATION AND TRAINING > 9305 Education and Training Systems > 930501 Education and Training Systems Policies and Development @ 30%
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