What is Structured Workplace Learning (SWL)?

Structured Workplace Learning (SWL) is a state government initiative that provides opportunities for school students to undertake work placement. SWL is available to Victorian students who are undertaking VET as part of their VCE or VCAL studies (including School-based Apprenticeships and Traineeships (SBATs)). The 31 Victorian LLENs are currently funded to coordinate SWL placements for students state-wide.

Structured Workplace Learning (SWL) enables a student to actively participate in a workplace component of their Vocational Education Training (VET) enrolment. Students are generally studying in years 11 or 12 in either VCAL or VCE and undertake an SWL placement for one day per week or in blocks of one week at a time.  SWL placements enable students to gain specific skills on-the job or in a simulated workplace environment. The placement must be directly related to the specific units of competency/skill requirements of a VET/VCAL course/qualification. The school and participating employers agree on these skills or competencies prior to the placement.

All placements are listed on the statewide SWL Portal which can be accessed by Schools, Students and Industry.

What is Work Experience?

Work experience is a short-term option, (usually 1-2 week blocks) undertaken by students in year 10 and offers students a general taste of the world of work. The experiences and understanding of the work environment help students to make career plans and decisions.

What is an SBAT?

A School Based Apprenticeship/Traineeship (SBAT) offers students the option of combining school, part time employment and training. The program is undertaken under a Training Contract with an employer. A Training Plan signed by the school is formally lodged with the Australian Apprenticeship Centre (AAC). It leads to a nationally recognised qualification. An SBAT is an integral part of the student’s school learning program and study timetable. Regular school attendance is combined with a minimum of one timetabled day a week of employment and/or structured training.

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SWL stories


SWL student secures apprenticeship after completing work placement


Victorian Energy Education and Training Program


From SWL to Apprenticeship


Students demonstrating trade training in the workplace