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Online Field Education Supervision Training

Charles Sturt University offers an online supervision subject, which has been developed in conjunction with the: AASW; employers with long experience in taking students; and a number of universities. HCS514 subject is free for Australian citizens and international students with a permanency visa. It is a non award subject meaning it cannot be used as a credit in any degree courses, however students do get to accrue 40 CPD hours, and are required to complete 4 quizzes in order to complete the subject.

The HCS514 subject covers the theory and practice of student supervision for social workers and other human services workers who take students for field education placements. It covers the theory and practice of student supervision within a framework of adult learning and the developmental stages of supervision. It focuses on developing critical reflection and professional practice, knowledge and skills in student supervision.

The subject will cover the following topics:

  • What is student supervision in field education?
  • Roles and functions of the field educator, the learning partnership, key players
  • The influence of social, political and organisational context on supervisory practice; issues and strategies
  • Theories and models of adult and reflective learning in student supervision
  • Phases of student supervision
  • Creating a positive learning environment; educational strategies in supervision
  • Developing professional identity and reflective ethical practice
  • Standards of field education, assessing students, constructive feedback
  • Preparation for taking a student
  • Working with diversity in field education
  • Working with complexity and students in difficulties


Presented by the School of Social Work and Arts, Charles Sturt University

The subject is purely online and there is no direct contact between lecturer and student.

Learning Objectives

Upon successful completion of this subject, students should be able to:

  • demonstrate an understanding of the social-political-organisatonal context in which supervision of social work and human services students occurs and to identify some of the issues associated with this
  • demonstrate an understanding of the functions and roles needed to supervise social work/human services students including: education, administration, support and developing reflective abilities
  • demonstrate an understanding of the roles and responsibilities of student, field educator, university liaison staff and Field Education Coordinator and the nature of the educational partnership required
  • critically apply the developmental phases and associated tasks of the supervision process
  • demonstrate understanding of expectations of standards of professional ethical practice and national field education outcomes that students must achieve to gain a satisfactory result in both field education placements
  • identify theories of supervision including adult learning theories and apply these to their own supervision experiences and practice
  • demonstrate understanding and to apply educational strategies to assist students to achieve their learning objectives during field education
  • demonstrate understanding of strategies to deal with students experiencing difficulties
  • demonstrate the ability to work with complexity and diversity in supervisory contexts

Learner Prerequisites

This subject is only open to qualified social workers and other human service professionals with 2 years practice experience who are, or will be, involved in the supervision of social work practicum students. As part of this subject's teaching/assessment, students must be in a position to supervise a social work or human services practicum student.


40 Hours



Registration and More Information

To enroll, click on the following link:

Select post-graduate box, select the drop down with single subject option, and on the right hand side of the webpage click on “apply online”. Register first, and verify your details, then log in. Then ”Start a new application”, follow the process as directed, nominating HCS514. In the 'Choose your course' field please enter SSYW which indicates single subject study.

Here is the link to the online version of the ‘green book’ that contains the curriculum content for the supervision subjects and is used as the textbook for the subjects. Anyone can download this.

If you have any specific questions you can email:

AASW - Australian Association of Social Workers