Work Based Learning (WBL)

Work based learning (WBL) is an educational opportunity for students to apply learning to the professional workplace, strengthening skills and learning more about the requirements of the field and how best to perform. WBL is identified in different ways, but includes courses titled: clinical, affiliation, fieldwork, and practicum. Some WBL is incorporated into courses that are offered each semester, while others are scheduled independently. They may be scheduled for a few days a week, or for several consecutive full weeks. Each experience is completed in a workplace environment. Specific proof of immunity may be required depending on your program of study and placement. Additional immunization, laboratory work, drug tests and/or written documentation may be required based on individual circumstances.

For all WBL experiences student knowledge, technical skills, attitude, attendance and behavior are evaluated based on predetermined criteria that are provided to the students and the agency. It is the student’s responsibility to understand the goals, objectives and evaluation criteria for the experience and to adhere to all policies, rules and procedures set forth by RVCC, the academic department/program and the assigned workplace. 

To ensure the safety and well being of others, the College must be certain that each student participating in a WBL experience possesses minimum skills, knowledge, personal maturity and judgment as defined by department/program standards. A student will not be placed in, or will be removed from, a WBL experience if performance or behavior is deemed unsatisfactory or unsafe as a result of a formal evaluation conducted by a faculty member/agency supervisor in accordance with published department/program, criteria and procedures. In such circumstances in which a removal from the WBL is indicated a grade of “AF” will be assigned. 

The RVCC Student Handbook describes sanctions that can be taken if a student violates the College Code of Conduct while participating in a WBL experience. There are occasions when a violation is significant enough that a student will be recommended for immediate expulsion from the WBL experience or suspension from a program. In such instances: 

  • The faculty will make a recommendation to the Vice President of Academic and Student Affairs that specifies the exact nature of the situation and the potential risks for continuation in the experience. 
  • The student will be notified of this recommendation in conference and a signature will be secured indicating the student understands that they must not return to the workplace setting. 
  • Upon review of the recommendation and supporting documentation, the VPAA will make a decision to support the faculty recommendation or will require a meeting with the student, college faculty and WBL supervisor to review the status and discuss possible options.

As with any academic decision, the student has the right to appeal as described in the RVCC Student Handbook. 

Criminal Background Check Policy

A criminal background check is required by many facilities prior to Work Based Learning (WBL) experiences. Failure to undergo a criminal background check prior to an assigned work based learning experience may result in inability to progress in a program. Should an agency refuse to place a student based on the outcome of the background check, the college/program shall have no responsibility for arranging an alternate clinical/fieldwork or practicum placement. Students may appeal the decision and will be given the opportunity to present information to dispute the background check. Students must agree that all results will be available to the program and the sites associated with the program. The criminal background check may be required several times during a two year program and may be required for employment and/or licensure and/or certification. Cost for the criminal background check will be the responsibility of the student. Students should work with their Program Directors for assistance. Note: Some agencies require a state and federal background check.

Drug and Alcohol Test

Drug and Alcohol Testing is required by many facilities prior to Work Based Learning (WBL) experiences. Failure to undergo a drug and alcohol test prior to an assigned work based learning experience may result in inability to progress in a program. Should an agency refuse to place a student based on the outcome of a drug and alcohol test, the college/program shall have no responsibility for arranging an alternate clinical/fieldwork or practicum placement. Students may appeal the decision and will be given the opportunity to present information to dispute the drug and alcohol test. Students must agree that all results will be available to the program and the sites associated with the program. The drug and alcohol test may be required several times during a two year program and may be required for employment and/or licensure and/or certification. Cost for the drug and alcohol test will be the responsibility of the student. Students should work with their Program Directors for assistance.