Placements with Partner Properties


Preference Entering and Communicating with Properties

Students are not to contact any property, either listed on the Virtual Veterinary Campus (VVC) or otherwise, without prior written consent from the Faculty Extramural Admin Unit.

The animal husbandry property list on the VVC is provided to assist students in undertaking the extramural animal husbandry farm placement requirements and students are granted access to this list, through the VVC, on the understanding that they will use it only for the purpose of undertaking their animal husbandry farm placement requirements. Any student found to be using this list for any other purpose or contacting properties on the VVC without first receiving written consent from the Extramural Admin Unit will be found to be in breach of the Student Code of Conduct (pdf) and will be reported to the Veterinary Professional Conduct Committee.

Placement weeks generally run from Monday to Friday. However, this is not always the case. Some properties 'require' students to attend two weeks others 'prefer' students attend two weeks. Some properties require a student to have their own transport or do not supply accommodation etc. Students need to read the information available on the VVC and to be aware of each property's requirements for placement prior to entering preferences. Students will be required to attend all placements they are allocated to. Allocations will not be cancelled except under approved Special Consideration Application.

Generally places offered by our Partner properties falls short of the number of placements required for student placement. Students who cannot be placed with Partner sites will need to source placements with other properties (Non Partner Sites). Information about applying for Non Partner Site placement is on the Non Partner Site Placements page. However faculty seeks to fill all the places offered by our Partner sites before accepting applications for Non Partner Site Placement. Therefore students may only make their own arrangements for practical work for compulsory species placements when there are no Partner Site places available. Students will be notified when this is the case for any species. This applies to compulsory species placements only.

Students are permitted to make their own arrangements for practical work on commercial properties which are not currently on the faculty database as part of their elective placements.

Prior to Preference Entering

Students should review their AH records on the VVC in preparation for preference entering at least one week before the close of the first round. Students should check the allocation status of each species to ensure that their records are as they believe they should be. Email to notify of alterations.

Students should review all the information on each property available on the VVC by logging onto the VVC/Animal Husbandry Properties pages. Students should only enter preferences for properties they will be able to attend. Students can review their entered preferences and delete or change them until the deadline for preference entering for each round and species as published below in the Placement Organisation tables. Students will be required to attend all allocated preferences.

The Student Guide to Organising Placements.pdf will assist you in entering preferences and tracking your placement on the VVC.

Notes on Some Placement Sites

Drap'hyd require students to apply initially with a CV before entering preferences on the VVC. Students should only enter preferences for this site after advising faculty that they have been accepted by Drap'hyd.

The National Zoo & Aquarium and possibly other zoos and wildlife parks are booked up sometimes a year in advance by students from other institutions. The placement schedule cannot work with this timeframe. Therefore the faculty does not have zoos or wildlife parks as Partner Sites. Students are advised to follow the procedure for contact with these sites about a year in advance to secure dates for placement. These are Non Partner Site Applications and students should follow to procedure described on the Non Partner Site Applications page.

Preference Entering & Allocation to Partner Sites

Prior to each vacation period, the faculty will schedule an information session for all students who will be entering preferences over the coming placement period. The next information session is scheduled for Wednesday 19th March.

Students enter preferences through the Student Administration System - Virtual Veterinary Campus (VVC)

Information about Partner properties is available on the VVC, Animal Husbandry Properties page. Students are reminded that prior to entering preferences they need to review each properties full record on the VVC, noting specific attendance dates and other requirements such as accessibility – do you need your own transport or not, accommodation options etc. The species operated at a particular property is identified in the 'TypeID' field and some properties operate two or more species. However, they may only offer one species over the placement period and this will only be apparent when you try to enter preferences.

Please note that some properties offer placements Wednesday to Sunday only. The travel time to a following placement should be considered before entering preferences. Students are reminded that they are generally required to be on site the evening before the Start Date of each placement.

Some properties such as Rivalea Australia and Alpaca Magic offer only two week placements. If so students should enter preferences for either Week 1 & 2 or Week 3 & 4 of the month. Week 2 & 3 dates will not be allocated. Students must enter two successive weeks to be allocated. They may enter as one preference over 12 days or two preferences eg. Pig Experience for one week and Elective Experience as the next.

Student preferences are allocated by random ballot. 3rd Year students will have highest priority until the end of 1st Semester and 2nd Year students have preference over 1st Year students. Students are required to have their Animal Husbandry placements completed (or at least organised) by the beginning of 2nd Semester, 3rd Year. How The Ballot Works will explain how preferences are allocated and will assist students to enter preferences that will maximize their successful placement.

Preference for Students Attending the Same Site for More Than One Week.

Obviously students must enter dates for two week placements to Partner sites who require students to attend for two weeks. However, several Partner sites prefer students attend for two weeks rather than one and preference will be given to students entering preferences for a two week attendance. It is therefore an advantage, for allocation to these sites, to enter such preferences. A property's preference for a two week placement is indicated in the 'Notes Comments Updates' page found in the drop down menu in 'More about the Property' box on the property file.

Students obviously need to enter two successive weeks to be allocated. They may enter as one preference over 12 days or two preferences eg. Sheep Experience for one week and Wk 1 Elective Experience as the next.

  • Students indicate in the 'Priority Preference Option' section of their entered preference if they have entered the other half of a two week placement under another Species Requirement.
  • Students must email with the particulars of their entered preferences prior to the relevant preference entering deadline. Use the following format:
    Subject line: Two Week Preferences Entered for December
    Body: I have entered preferences for a two week placement with Smiths Farm in December. I have entered Week 1, 2 & 3 for Sheep Experience & Week 2, 3 & 4 for Wk 2 Elective Experience .

The Animal Husbandry email account is checked after each preference entering deadline for this particular text 'Two Week Preferences Entered' in the Subject line prior to sorting preferences. Unless I receive an email alerting me to your entered two week preferences I do not know to find them.

Entering Elective Experience Preferences

An allocation/placement to a Partner property offering more than one species indicates that the student may be working with any species offered by that property. It is not possible to communicate a students preference for working with a particular species when the faculty confirms student Elective Experience placements. Students may express an interest in working with a particular species when they make initial contact with the site after their placement is Confirmed. However, students cannot be guaranteed that all or part of their Elective Experience will be spent on a particular species.

Students Enrolled from 2011

Students are divided into groups and subgroups for the Camden Animal Handling Week and for preference in placement allocation. The Extramural Student Placement Rotation Schedule outlines when each group is scheduled to attend for the Camden Animal Handling Week and when they will be given preference, within their Year, in the allocation process to attend each Species Experience. Other students will only be placed after preferred group preferences have been allocated.

The following timetables are issued for the organisation of placements.

Winter 2014 Placement Organisation

Winter 2014 will be allocated according to the following preference entering schedule. Preferences are allocated one species at a time and should be entered one species at a time. However, two-week preferences will be allocated as each preference entering deadline passes.

 FIRST ROUND

Preference Entering Opens 5pm

Preference Entering Deadlines  9am

Allocation on VVC 5pm

 Beef

 March 28

 April 2 

 April 4

 Sheep

 April 4

 April 7

 April 8

 Pigs 

 April 8

 April 9 

 April 10

 Horse

 April 11

 April 16

 April 17

 Dairy

 April 16

 April 29

 April 30

 Poultry

 April 29

 May 1

 May 2 

 Elective

 May 1

 May 5 

 May 6

 

 SECOND ROUND

Preference Entering Opens 5pm

Preference Entering Deadlines  9am

Allocation on VVC 5pm

 Beef

 May 6

 May 7 

 May 9

 Sheep

 May 9

 May 12

 May 13

 Pigs 

 May 12

 May 14

 May 16

 Horse

 May 14

 May 19

 May 20

 Dairy

 May 19

 May 21

 May 23

 Poultry

 May 23

 May 26

 May 27  

 Elective

 May 26

 May 28

 May 29  

Entered Preferences Disappear After Each Preference Entering Deadline

Preferences are downloaded after the deadline for preference entering at each round and species as listed above. When preferences are downloaded from the VVC for sorting students will no longer be able to view or access their preferences. They have not disappeared from the system.

Do not reenter preferences.

Students will be required to attend all allocated preferences.

Since students will not be able to ammend or delete any preferences after they have been downloaded by faculty they should only enter preferences after the previous Species Experience has been sorted. A note on the VVC Preclinical - Animal Husbandry preference entering page will be updated to advise students which species they should be entering preferences for. Entering preferences according to this advice will prevent students being allocated two placements in the same week.

When the allocation process is finished students will be able to view their allocations on their Preference Allocations page on the VVC.

Notification of Preference Allocation

All students will be notified by email when all preferences for a species and round have been allocated. Students should log into the VVC and go to Animal Husbandry/ Preference Allocations page to view if they have been allocated. Students who have been allocated should check the details of the allocation, particularly the species, dates and number of days. If the details of your allocation are not as you expected email immediately.

Cancelling Allocations

Allocations will ONLY be cancelled if and when an Special Consideration Application is approved. Refer to Cancelling or Altering a Confirmed Placement on the Student Responsibilites page. Enquiries to . Students will be required to attach supporting evidence for cancelling an allocation. Not planning your finances or transport before entering preferences will not support an application to cancel an allocation.

Obviously if a student is allocated in error e.g. to two sites in the same placement week one of these will have to be cancelled. Students should email immediately they are aware of errors in their allocations.

Swapping Allocations

Students may swap their allocations with other students. However, this can ONLY be arranged if both students have entered preferences for their species and property in a previous preference entering period.

Both students must email . As with all communication with the faculty students must use the format required - see Uni Email.

Insert the words “Swap ‘Species’ Allocation” into the subject line please, so that it will be clearly identified. In the body of the email give the Name of the person you are swapping with, the Property Name and the Placement month and week that you are allocated and the month and week that you are swapping to. Your swap will be confirmed by email. If you do not receive a reply to your swap request within four days you should contact the Extramural Unit.

Giving your allocation to another student can be arranged but ONLY if that student has entered a preference for that site in a previous round of preference entering. The procedure is the same. Both students need to email their wishes - one to give up their allocation to a particular student (please give full name and Year) and the other to take up the allocation.

Requests to 'swap' or 'give' allocations must be received by the Extramural Unit while the Allocation Status of that allocation reads "Allocated - To Be Requested". No adjustment can be made to an allocation once the property has been requested to confirm the placement.

The VVC is a true record of the status of your placements. If you believe it to be incorrect you should contact the Extramural Unit immediately.

Property Confirmation of Placement

Faculty will contact properties with student names and dates asking for confirmation that they are still able to host the students scheduled to attend. These requests for confirmation will be issued to properties after the second round of allocations at the end of May.

If the property has confirmed their placements students will be sent a Confirmation Email to their Uni email. A Confirmation Email will include the Site details, Supervisor contact details, and your placement dates. Also included are instructions for contacting the site, further requirements for submitting reports, and information relating to insurance.

A placement package including a cover letter, insurance certifcate, Meeting Schedule, WHS Induction Checklist, Site Contracts and Supervisor Report form will be posted to the property prior to the placement by the Admin Unit. If these documents have not arrived before you please contact ph: (02) 9036 5110 or email on

At commencement of all placements students will be required meet with their supervisor, review the Induction Checklist and sign the Site Contracts with their supervisor. The Site Contract outlines your agreement to abide by a professional code of conduct. Your supervisor completes the Supervisor Report form and returns it directly to the Admin Unit.

UNSUCCESSFUL Placement

Occasionally properties may for unforseen reasons, business or personal, decline a student placement. Changes in circumstances such as illness, accident or reduced stock numbers can happen and although a property was able to host some students a month or so ago, they may no longer be able to take students. In this instance the placement is cancelled.

Students are advised to plan for at least one cancelled placement when they are organising their holidays and break times so that they are able to meet their placement requirements.

Students are required to complete all their species requirements by the 3rd Week of the winter break in their 3rd Year. However, sometimes placements in this break fall through. Students in this situation are advised to investigate properties still available for placement on the faculty database or to find a Non Partner site for placement. Refer to Non Partner Site Placements.

Properties for some species can be difficult to find and students may be unsuccessful in finding a Non Partner site to meet the deadline for completion of their Animal Husbandry placements. If this is the case the student may apply to have their Year priority in the ballot restored for possible placement with a Partner site in the next placement period. However, the student is required to substantiate that they have contacted a minimum of ten sites without success when applying for Year priority.

Students in 2nd Year will also be assisted in finding another suitable Partner site if possible during the same placement period. They may be given priority in the next round of preference entering. If this is not possible the student should seek placement with a Non Partner site.

Prior to Placement

The Confirmation Email instructs students to communicate with their supervisor on the site. Students are required to phone Property within a few days, two weeks prior to placement and again two days before placement. Students and supervisors confirm phone numbers and arrange arrival details. Students are not to contact the property by email unless they are specifically instructed to do so.

Students need to make sure that they have checked maps and itinerary to reach the property on time as agreed with the supervisor at the property. If you predict that you will be delayed in your arrival contact the site to inform them of your circumstances.

Students are required to attend the afternoon or evening before the Start Date for orientation and to discuss your placement expectations with your supervisor. Students should arrive with the Report Template with Skills Sheet for the appropriate species so that they can discuss the skills they are required to become competent in while on placement.

Students are required to work the operating hours of the property as indicated on the property's VVC record.

If you are staying on site you should advise the site of any health or diet requirements you have when you first contact the site. Take supplies as applicable.

Special Consideration and Emergency Cancellation

If you are unable to attend a placement for reasons of illness, or misadventure due to circumstances beyond your control, please phone the Extramural Unit immediately. If your placement is due to commence before you are able to contact the Extramural Unit, please contact the property to explain your situation and apologise that you will not be attending as scheduled.

To cancel a placement for reasons of illness or misadventure you are required to apply for Special Consideration (pdf) within 7 days of the commencement of placement.

Students are expected to behave in a professional manner at all times, to be enthusiastic and willing to learn whilst on placement.

Property owners and their staff always look for enthusiasm from the students and a keenness to learn and to understand their situation.

The Veterinary Professional Conduct Committee (VPCC) reviews any complaints concerning student behaviour while on placement. The VPCC is not punitive but aims to educate students in appropriate and professional behaviour. If the VPCC finds that a student has willfully breached the Student Code of Conduct (pdf) by inappropriate and unprofessional behavour it will be noted on the student's Faculty records. The Academic Board will be notified if the VPCC determines that a student has again willfully breached the Student Code of Conduct.