Orientation Policy and Procedures

Last Updated 2 September, 2019

  1. Orientation is defined as the provision of key information to new students ahead of the beginning of their studies, in both in written form for immediate and ongoing reference and forums where students meet with staff to receive key information, ask questions, clarify uncertainties, and discuss concerns.
  2. Orientation information will be provided at all campuses in line with SCD policy and the current Higher Education Standards. Where there are international students, the information provided will also meet the requirements of the current National Code of Practice for Providers of Education and Training to Overseas Students.
  3. Orientation for new students will take place at all SCD campuses at the beginning of every teaching period (semester or trimester), ahead of the first classes, whether the delivery of teaching is face-to-face or online.
  4. SCD will ensure that all teaching bodies have equivalent orientation programs, addressing the core matters set out in this policy with details appropriate to the nature of the cohort and the location and facilities of the campus.
  5. Orientation forums will be face-to-face for face-to-face students and online for online students.
  6. Where accredited programs of study other than SCD programs are offered at the same campus, orientation information relating to SCD programs will be clearly distinguished as the information relevant to students enrolled for SCD awards.
  7. All campuses will include clear direction to the SCD website for further information on their own websites and in relevant printed material and provide contact details for the Office of the Dean.
  8. All students will be directed in advance of the beginning of the teaching period to access the written orientation materials and participate in the appropriate orientation forum. Directions will be included clearly on websites and in signage where relevant.
  9. For overseas students, these directions will also be provided in correspondence ahead of their arrival and the exact location of the forum explained clearly. It will be made clear whether information specifically relevant to overseas students will be included within the general orientation program or whether there will be an additional forum for overseas students, with further details in the latter case.
  10. Orientation information in written form or specific website links will be submitted to the Office of the Dean to ensure compliance ahead of each teaching period.
  11. Orientation information will comprise information about (i) locations and contacts for the campus concerned, including contacts details for the Student Support Officer as the immediate point of contact; (ii) academic matters including courses, units, and teaching arrangements; and (iii) student services.
  12. Each teaching body with overseas students will make it clear to overseas students whether this Student Support Officer is the immediate point of contact for them or whether there is a separate Overseas/International Student Support Officer to carry out this function, and provide relevant contact details if this is the case.
  13. Where there are face-to-face students, location information will include a map of the campus indicating key locations including those of the Student Support Officer and other staff, classrooms, library, and other facilities, together with student services as listed at point 15 below.
  14. Academic information to be provided in the orientation process will include the relevant information about:
    • the relationship between SCD and the teaching body
    • courses and course units, including the Course Unit Booklet
    • majors, sub-majors, and specialisations
    • requirements for attendance, progress, and completion
    • graduation
    • online learning and the Learning Management System (LMS), including the necessity of keeping LMS login details for the exclusive use of the student and penalties for sharing these with any other person
    • students-at-risk recognition and strategies
    • academic mentoring available
    • assessment
    • academic integrity, including advice about what constitutes plagiarism, cheating, and contract cheating and warning of the severe penalties attached
    • communication of results
    • access to the SCD and teaching body handbooks
    • academic appeals
    • the faculty
    • student feedback processes
  1. Information about student services available will include information about:
    • learning support, including:
      • support for gaining study and writing skills, including the fact that Studiosity is the only SCD-approved external study and writing skills support service
      • library and IT support, including normal hours of availability
      • after-hours support for physical and electronic access to the library, IT support, and Studiosity
      • improvement in the use of academic and general English (especially but not only for students who have required satisfactory IELTS for admission)
    • general support for all students, including:
      • safety precautions
      • dealing with and reporting critical incidents and other emergencies
      • support staff with contact details, including for the student grievance process
      • health and wellbeing provisions and referrals
      • disability support
      • counselling and chaplaincy
      • availability of financial support
      • student amenities
      • extra-curricular activities available
      • careers and vocations
      • personal support, including availability of individual pastoral care
    • additional support for living and studying in Australia specifically for overseas students, including:
      • acculturation support
      • accommodation, transport, and shopping
      • Australian legal advice and referrals
      • free intellectual inquiry and learning through discussion
      • employment and workplace expectations
      • any specific support staff for overseas students with contact details and explanation of their specific training and capabilities
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