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PACE Activity Management Procedure

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Section 1 - Purpose

(1) This Procedure establishes the core stages, resources, requirements, and operational expectations for the management of PACE Activities. This Procedure documents the steps and resources that staff and students must follow throughout the lifecycle of PACE Activities, specifically concerning:

  1. PACE Activity Roles and Responsibilities;
  2. PACE Partner Identification, Selection, and Engagement;
  3. PACE Activity Sourcing Design and Development;
  4. PACE Activity Assessment and Approval;
  5. Student Engagement;
  6. Monitoring and Support, and
  7. Feedback / Evaluation.


(2) This Procedure applies to all stakeholders involved in the conduct of PACE Activities for an existing approved PACE unit.

(3) Note: This Procedure does not document requirements for the approval of new PACE units. Staff should refer to the Criteria for PACE Units and Activities established by Academic Senate for further information.

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Section 2 - Policy

(4) Nil.

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Section 3 - Procedures

Part A - PACE Activity Roles and Responsibilities

(5) All stakeholders must be made aware of, agree to, and comply with the PACE Activity Roles and Responsibilities (See Governance and Guidelines for Local and Regional PACE Activities) before commencement of a PACE Activity. The PACE Activity is managed by PACE Unit Convenors, Faculty PACE teams, and / or PACE International (as appropriate).

PACE Unit Convenor Role

(6) PACE Unit Convenors are responsible for:

  1. all academic matters in relation to the PACE unit including confirmation that the activity meets unit learning outcomes;
  2. assessment and approval of the risk level of the PACE activity (in conjunction with PACE International for international activities);
  3. undertaking their PACE Unit Convenor role as per Criteria for PACE Units and Activities for the duration of the PACE Activity including when the PACE Activity is approved as Early Commencement or organised by PACE International. This includes monitoring of student learning whilst on a PACE Activity.
  4. Liaising with the front-line PACE teams where relevant to ensure that:
    1. PACE Partner details are captured and kept up-to-date in the Customer Relationship Management (CRM) system;
    2. the PACE Activity Confirmation is completed; and
    3. and the PACE Partner is sent a copy of the Governance and Guidelines for Local and Regional PACE Activities and have agreed to their roles and responsibilities.

Front-line PACE Teams

(7) Front-line PACE teams are responsible for:

  1. liaising with PACE Unit Convenors where relevant to ensure that PACE Partner details are entered into the CRM system; the PACE Activity Design Confirmation is complete; and the PACE Partner is sent a copy of the Governance and Guidelines for Local and Regional PACE Activities and have agreed to their roles and responsibilities; and
  2. allocating students to activities (as appropriate) and providing operational support before, during and after activities. This includes ensuring that students have completed the Student Undertaking and Emergency Contact Form for the unit.

(8) For international PACE Activities, PACE International staff must conduct a thorough risk assessment and ensure that any accompanying academics are informed of, understand and agree to implement risk management and mitigation during the activity.

(9) PACE International must provide details of participating students and their activities to the relevant Faculty PACE Manager / Officer and PACE Unit Convenor once students have accepted their offer of an international PACE Activity.

Records and Information Management

(10) All University staff must comply with the University’s Records and Information Management Policy. University records pertaining to PACE Activities must be retained and available in the approved PACE Systems and Applications. This applies to all academic and professional staff involved in management of PACE Activities.

Part B - PACE Partner Identification, Selection, and Engagement

PACE Partner Criteria

(11) All PACE Partners must meet the PACE Partnership Principles and Criteria. International PACE partners must meet the PACE International Partner Appraisal Criteria and international community development partners must meet the PACE International Community Development Appraisal Criteria. Organisation details and details of the assessment and screening must be recorded in the CRM.

Third Party Providers

(12) All Third Party Providers engaged to provide services must go through the University procurement process and comply with the PACE Partnership Principles and Criteria. Organisation details and the assessment outcome must be recorded in the CRM.

PACE Partner Communication

(13) PACE Partners must be provided with information regarding the PACE unit(s), including learning outcomes, assessment tasks, and any reporting requirements as relevant. They must also receive information about the PACE program’s legal and operational parameters specified in the Governance and Guidelines for Local and Regional PACE Activities.

(14) Interactions with PACE Partner(s) in relation to PACE opportunities and activities must be recorded in the CRM.

Part C - PACE Activity Sourcing, Design, and Development

(15) All PACE Activities must be designed collaboratively so that they satisfy the needs of the PACE Partner, meet the academic requirements of the PACE unit, are ethical and safe for students, and meet the Criteria for PACE units and activities.

(16) PACE Partner(s) and the University must establish adequate information about the PACE Activity to allow for assessment and approval of the PACE Activity. The information required for assessment must at a minimum include:

  1. activity description;
  2. objectives and tasks; 
  3. student requirements;
  4. student support;
  5. supervisor details;
  6. activity location; and
  7. possible risks and mitigation strategies.

(17) All required PACE Activity information must be recorded in real time in the approved PACE systems.

PACE Activities sourced by Student(s)

(18) All PACE Activities sourced by student(s) must be submitted using the designated Student Sourced PACE Activity Proposal Form by the due date stipulated in the PACE Unit Guide or PACE unit iLearn or PACEWISE. Student(s) are not permitted to commence their PACE Activity prior to it being approved by the PACE Unit Convenor.

(19) PACE Partner(s) must confirm the accuracy of the PACE Activity information provided when agreeing to the PACE Activity Roles and Responsibilities (see Governance and Guidelines for Local and Regional PACE Activities). If amendments are made after the activity has commenced students must notify PACE Staff of the nature of the change.

Part D - PACE Activity Assessment and Approval

Assessment and Approval against Learning Outcomes

(20) All PACE Activities must be assessed and approved by the PACE Unit Convenor, or in exceptional circumstances by an authorised nominee, as meeting the learning outcomes of the PACE unit. An authorised nominee must be approved in writing by the Head of Department or other delegated authority (i.e.Associate Dean, Learning and Teaching or Academic and Program Director, PACE as relevant).

Risk Assessment and Approval

(21) Under the Work Health and Safety Act 2011 (NSW), both the University and the PACE Partner(s) have a ‘duty of care’ to ensure that students are safe when undertaking a PACE Activity.

(22) As part of the PACE Activity design process, the University will request that the PACE Partner provide detailed information of any risks that may impact on the health, safety, or wellbeing of student(s) whilst undertaking the PACE Activity. This allows the University to undertake a risk assessment of the activity, which is required before the activity can be approved.

(23) All University stakeholders undertaking risk assessment and approving PACE Activities must complete the University’s risk assessment training, including PACE specific training, as required. 

(24) All PACE Activities must be assessed and approved for risk by the PACE Unit Convenor or Head of Department as indicated in the PACE Risk Assessment Criteria.

(25) All international activities must further be assessed for risk by PACE International using the PACE International Risk Assessment Criteria prior to approval. 

Paid PACE Activities / PACE Activities with Existing Employers

(26) PACE encourages students to integrate learning into real work environments, therefore paid placements are supported and encouraged. However, conflict of interest issues must be addressed if the student is seeking to complete a PACE Activity with their existing employer.

(27) Students must declare if a PACE Activity is with their existing employer when proposing their PACE Activity – using the Student Sourced PACE Activity Proposal Form. PACE Staff must be satisfied that the proposed organisation meets the PACE Partnership Principles and Criteria and that the proposed PACE Activity is outside the usual scope of work with the student’s employer and / or that it develops or further enhances skills as per the learning outcomes of the unit.

Conflict of Interest

(28) University staff have an obligation to ensure that all student work is assessed fairly, objectively, and consistently, including for PACE Activities. The University must ensure that the professional relationship between the student and their Supervisor does not compromise this obligation. This includes ensuring that a suitable Supervisor is available who is not in a personal or family relationship with the student.  

(29) Students must declare any actual, potential, or perceived conflict of interest when submitting their application for approval and / or when applying for a PACE Activity. If a conflict of interest is identified the PACE Unit Convenor may decide that the student cannot participate in the activity or may put in place further monitoring requirements.

Part E - Student Engagement

Student Enrolment and PACE Activity Selection

(30) Information on PACE Activity sourcing, selection or proposal requirements, attendance details, learning outcomes and key deadlines will be made available to students via PACEWISE iLearn and / or the PACE Unit Guide. These details must be provided in advance to give students sufficient time to prepare for the unit. Students must enrol in the relevant PACE unit before commencing their PACE Activity. Co-curricular students may be permitted to undertake International PACE activities where there are places available.

Early Commencement

(31) In certain circumstances, students may commence their PACE Activity prior to the official session commencement date (see Calendar of Dates): this is referred to as ‘early commencement’. Early commencement can be approved by the PACE Unit Convenor as part of the PACE Activity approval, or students can submit a PACE Early Commencement Form to the PACE Unit Convenor for consideration. Approval must be received prior to the student commencing their PACE Activity. Front-line PACE staff are available to assist students with application decisions.

Student Preparation

(32) Specific PACE Activity details and requirements must be provided to the student in iParticipate, including Supervisor contact details (as appropriate).

(33) Students must undertake any additional student preparation as stipulated in iParticipate or as communicated by the PACE Partner before commencing their PACE Activity (including background checks and clearances, vaccinations, health checks, pre-departure briefing attendance where relevant).

(34) All students must complete the Student Undertaking and Emergency Contact Form, and for international activities the PACE International Activity Acceptance Form before commencing their PACE Activity.

Managing Other Commitments

(35) The PACE Activity is an inherent requirement of all PACE units and the University seeks to ensure appropriate arrangements are in place so that students can undertake such activities, without a significant impact on their other studies. Students enrolling in PACE unit(s) must carefully read the unit requirements in the Unit Guide for the PACE unit and any other units to be attempted in the same session.

(36) If the requirements of a PACE Activity are likely to conflict with the attendance requirements and / or assessment deadlines for one or more other units in which a student is enrolled, the student must attempt to manage these competing commitments. If necessary, the student must contact the Unit Convenor(s) of the conflicting unit(s) to request reasonable accommodation for an absence from or other disruption to the unit(s). Contact must be made prior to the commencement of the PACE Activity or as soon as conflict is identified. Unit convenors should consider if the request is justified, and if so provide an appropriate reasonable accommodation which could include:

  1. enabling early submission of one or more assessment tasks;
  2. allowing an extension of time to submit one or more assessment tasks;
  3. considering alternatives to attendance at an on-campus session or other learning and teaching activity;
  4. providing learning materials in alternative formats;
  5. giving permission to sit a supplementary examination; and / or
  6. allocating an Enrolment Continuing grade (K) to allow an extension of time to complete the unit.

Student Disability Support

(37) Students are strongly encouraged to disclose and discuss any personal circumstances which may impact on their ability to complete the PACE Activity before selection or allocation to a PACE Activity is finalised.

(38) Students with a disability or medical requirements are to refer to the Student Disability Support Policy in relation to their support needs and the provision of reasonable adjustments for participation in the PACE Activity. Students requiring special arrangements due to personal circumstances other than disability or medical circumstances are to discuss these with their PACE Unit Convenor or front-line PACE staff.

Cost of PACE Activities

(39) Students undertaking a PACE Activity requiring international travel or travel outside the Sydney metro area may be eligible to apply to the PACE Travel Grant Scheme. The PACE travel grant scheme is intended to make a significant contribution towards travel and related costs incurred by the student, while expecting the student to meet the cost of any additional expenses.

(40) Students experiencing financial hardship may be eligible to apply to the PACE Equity Grant Scheme to assist in covering the financial costs involved in undertaking a PACE Activity.


(41) Students undertaking a PACE Activity are covered for Personal Accident, Public Liability, and, in certain cases, Travel Insurance. The cover is valid for the duration and purpose of the approved PACE Activity. These details are outlined in the PACE Insurance FAQs.

International Students and Paid Placements

(42) Students holding an international student visa have restrictions on the number of hours they are permitted to work. However, the restrictions on work hours do not apply to work that is undertaken as part of a formal placement as part of the student’s course of study. Student visa holders should consult the Department of Home Affairs for further information about their visa conditions.

Part F - Monitoring and Support


(43) PACE Staff and / or the PACE Unit Convenor must ensure mechanisms for monitoring and communication between the University, PACE Partner(s), and student(s) during the PACE Activity are established and maintained. This includes in relation to the quality of the experience, the student’s progress, and potential or actual problems. Monitoring must occur throughout the PACE Activity and can be achieved through various means, including via iLearn for students and via the CRM for PACE Partner(s).

(44) At a minimum contact must be made with the student and / or PACE Partner within the first quarter of the activity duration to ensure that the activity is progressing as planned, that the student received an induction, and that risk mitigation strategies are being implemented and are working as intended. 

(45) Communication mechanisms must be available to student(s) and PACE Partner(s) at all times during their PACE Activity. Student(s) and PACE Partner(s) must be advised who to contact if they have any concerns during their PACE Activity, including an alternative contact and how the contact may be made. Students should refer to their PACE Unit iLearn for details on how to contact their PACE Unit Convenor or another appropriate staff member.

Incident recording, reporting, and management

(46) In case of an incident, student(s) must follow the incident management and reporting processes of their host organisation, as indicated during their induction. They must contact Macquarie University staff as soon as practicable, as per the information in  iLearn and the Incident Response Card published in PACEWISE. For international PACE activities, students should follow reporting procedures as provided on the PACE International Emergency Card.

(47) Macquarie University staff must respond and manage any incidents during a PACE Activity according to the PACE Incident Response Plan, or PACE International Incident Response Plan for PACE Activities undertaken overseas. PACE staff must record all incidents in the University online incident reporting tool ROAR - Risk Online Active Reporting for health and safety incidents and Protecht for all other incidents.

Termination of PACE Activity

(48) In the event of a PACE Activity being cancelled by the PACE Partner or the University, PACE staff will work with students to find an alternative activity so that the requirements of the PACE unit can be met.

Student Conduct

(49) Students undertaking PACE Activities must abide by the Student Code of Conduct and PACE Student Undertaking. Allegations of misconduct and breaches of the Student Code of Conduct or PACE Activity Roles and Responsibilities (See Governance and Guidelines for Local and Regional PACE Activities) may result in termination of the PACE Activity and will be dealt with in accordance the Student Conduct Rules and Student Conduct Procedure.

Absence from PACE Activity

(50) Students are required to complete the designated number of hours for the PACE Activity as stipulated in the PACE Unit Guide or PACE International offer letter. Students must advise their Supervisor and the PACE Unit Convenor or Front-line PACE staff at the earliest possible time if they cannot attend or participate in the PACE Activity due to sickness or other personal circumstances. Unexplained absence from a PACE Activity will be dealt with in accordance with the academic requirements of the unit.

Withdrawal from PACE Activity

(51) Students who choose to withdraw from an activity due to cultural or personal reasons or who feel that their personal safety or wellbeing is at risk should immediately remove themselves from the source of risk and contact their Supervisor, PACE Unit Convenor or front-line PACE team to discuss next steps.

Special Consideration

(52) Students who experience ‘serious and unavoidable circumstances’ during their PACE unit or PACE Activity may seek to apply for special consideration in accordance with the Special Consideration Policy or may consider Withdraw Without Penalty.

Part G - Feedback / Evaluation

(53) PACE units and activities are reviewed periodically as part of the University’s unit review cycle and the PACE program evaluation cycle. This helps to ensure that PACE Units continue to meet the Criteria for PACE units and activities.

(54) Student and PACE Partner Surveys contribute to demonstrating the impact of the PACE program and support quality assurance and enhancement.

(55) A suite of online PACE Student Surveys is available for PACE Unit Convenors to distribute in their PACE units or by PACE International as relevant. A debriefing session is conducted for students who participate in international activities.

(56) The PACE Partner Survey, administered by the PACE Research and Evaluation Team, is distributed to a random sample of PACE Partners at the end of every session.

(57) There is a PACE Activity Management Procedure Flowchart available for this Procedure.

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Section 4 - Guidelines

(58) Nil.

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Section 5 - Definitions

(59) The following definitions apply for the purpose of this Procedure:

  1. PACE Activity means an experiential learning activity, undertaken as part of a PACE unit, that is approved by the University and carried out in conjunction with an external organisation or by an internal University partner. Includes internships, placements, professional experience, practicums, industry projects, fieldwork, mentoring, community development projects, and research and evaluation projects. A PACE Activity can be undertaken full-time or part-time, paid or unpaid.
  2. PACE means Professional and Community Engagement program integrating practical learning experience into Macquarie Bachelor degrees by connecting students with organisations to provide a mutually beneficial learning experience. PACE is designed to deepen knowledge and broaden experience. By applying knowledge and skills acquired at the University to real life, students have the opportunity to make a valuable contribution to the community, enhance their employability skills, and engage in active citizenship.
  3. PACE Activity Confirmation means an agreement between the University and the PACE Partner detailing the objectives, activities and tasks, location, supervision arrangements, operational and student requirements, risks and agreed mitigation strategies pertaining to the PACE Activity.
  4. PACE Partner means an organisation engaged in a mutually beneficial relationship with PACE through providing supervision and / or guidance to PACE student(s) during their PACE Activity. The relationship is limited to facilitating an experiential learning activity, and the PACE Activity Roles and Responsibilities (See Governance and Guidelines for Local and Regional PACE Activities) of the University, partner organisation, and student(s) are those that the parties agree to before the PACE Activity commences.
  5. Supervisor means an employee of an organisation who is nominated to provide active supervision and / or guidance to PACE student(s) during their PACE Activity (in a workplace, virtually / online, or on University premises). Supervisor includes an external third party or a University stakeholder other than the designated PACE Unit Convenor.