A-Z student information

The Student Guide has key information you need as you study with SWTAFE and where to seek help if you need it.

Student Guide

The Student Guide has all of the information you need to find your way around SWTAFE and where to seek any help you may need or browse the information below.


If you miss any classes or assessments due to illness or other personal reasons, you must inform the teacher concerned. Messages may be left on your teacher’s voicemail or via email. Your teacher will inform you of their preferred method of communication. If you miss an assessment, you may be required to provide a medical certificate.

You are expected to obtain copies of handouts or any other documentation received in the class from other classmates. Teaching staff are not responsible for ensuring that documentation is available in subsequent classes.

Accidents and injuries

If you are injured, have an accident, incident or near-miss while on campus, report it immediately to your teacher or other SWTAFE staff member so that first aid can be arranged without delay, any hazards controlled and an incident report completed. A staff member will also assist you in completing and filing forms as required.

Alcohol and other drugs

As a member of the SWTAFE community, you are required to behave sensibly and appropriately. You must not come onto
campus, attend class or any SWTAFE organised activity under the influence of alcohol or illegal drugs. Intoxicating liquor is also strictly forbidden on our premises with the exception of liquor in licensed areas.

If any of the above are breached, the process under the Student Code of Conduct will be followed.

Ambulance cover

If you have an accident or are injured at SWTAFE, it may be necessary to call an ambulance. If this occurs, you will incur the cost. Avoid this by ensuring that your ambulance cover is up to date.

Assignments and assessments

The assessment required for each course will vary and may include assignments, tests, exams, group work, research work and on-the-job assessment. Your teachers will provide specific information on the requirements for your course.
As a student you are expected to:

Access your online course information to keep up with any course notices
Submit individual work according to the requirements of your course
Participate fully in contributing to group assessments
Complete assessment tasks by their due dates or, if unable to meet submission dates, to negotiate an extension with your teacher.
Keep a copy of all work submitted for assessment (where practical and retain the marked work once it is returned as evidence of the assessment).
As a student you can expect that:

Assessment methods will be clear to you
Assessment tasks are relevant and meet the requirements of your course
Genuine requests for an extension of time for an assessment will be considered favourably
Fairness and lack of bias are demonstrated by your teachers when assessing your work
Results of assessments are provided within 15 working days of the due date
Open and honest feedback about your assessment tasks is provided by teachers.
Assessment procedures
Assignment/Assessment work is mandatory and must be submitted by the due date. All assignments must be submitted with an assessment cover sheet as the first page of your assignment. You can download a copy of the assessment cover sheet from the Student Lounge website.
If you are unable to complete an assignment or assessment by the due date, please speak to your teacher as soon as the issue becomes obvious. An extension is reliant on showing your work in progress to the teacher. Do not leave it to the last minute.

Assignment preparation
You should prepare for assignments early by:

knowing the topic - utilise library resources and Libguides, discussions with study networks and comprehend the question being asked
listening in class for information that relates to the topic
making a list of references (author, title, publication details and page number) while studying and pre-reading. This makes the assignment work relatively easier and facilitates good marks. Assignments that are thrown together in a few hours seldom gain a good mark
preparing drafts if there are any concerns about an assignment - teachers are happy to look at drafts (once only).
Assignment presentation
It is not necessary to submit assignments in folders or plastic covers (refer to sustainability commitment on page six of this manual). However, it is important that assignment work is submitted by the due date on your training plan or as advised by your teacher.

Assignment tips

Word-process all assignments.
Use easy to read typefaces e.g. Arial or Times New Roman.
Use a 12-point font size for the assignment body only.
Use bold text for emphasis only.
Number all assignment pages.
Use 3cm margins for all pages.
Adhere to the word count.
Ensure references used are cited
Use your own words and don’t copy large chunks of text.
Use bullet points when summarising large quantities of text
Print your name and student number on each page of your assignment and retain a copy for your records
Attach an assignment/assessment cover sheet to your assignment (a template is available on the Student Lounge website.
Submitting assignments and assessments
For written work in hard copy or for items produced, created and/or manufactured, students are required to use the assessment cover sheet which records the requirements needed to manage and control the care of student assessment items.

Assignments or assessment may be submitted directly to your teacher using email or Moodle - your teacher will advise you of the appropriate method.
Remember to proofread and check your assignment carefully prior to sending. When emailing assignments, it is recommended that the subject line or email content include your name, the assessment title and unit code and name.
Your teacher will acknowledge receipt of an assignment by return email. If you do not receive confirmation within 48 hours, please telephone your teacher to confirm receipt.
Remember to print your name and student number on each page of your assignment and retain a copy for your records.
Attach an assignment or assessment cover sheet to your assignment (a template is available on the Handy resources, policies and procedures website).

Collection of assignments
The collection of assignments for on-campus students will be negotiated with your teachers.

Assignment extensions
An extension of time to submit an assignment may be granted under special circumstances. Note that extensions are granted at the teacher’s discretion. Extensions are not an automatic right. Application form for an extension can be obtained from the Student Lounge website or from your course teacher.

Additional assessment attempts/re-submissions
Practical considerations and the availability of teaching resources affect the number of times you may be assessed. You are allowed at least two attempts to demonstrate competence in a particular area. Further attempts and the timing are set at the discretion of your teaching senior educator.

Assessment misconduct
If a student is acting dishonestly or unfairly in respect to an examination, test, assignment or other means of assessment conducted by or on behalf of South West TAFE, the action shall be regarded as misconduct under the Standards of Behaviour and the matter will be processed according to that policy.

Plagiarism is the presentation of another person’s work as though it is your own by failing to properly acknowledge that person.
Whether intentional or unintentional, plagiarism is a practice which runs counter to the very purpose of learning and training. It is expected that you will prepare and submit work which is your own and which, where appropriate, acknowledges the work of others.
Without full and appropriate acknowledgment to the original source(s) plagiarism includes any of the following:

Copying the exact words from a source without using quotation marks.
Making minor changes to someone else’s words without acknowledging their source.
Using another person’s idea from a text without acknowledging its source (for example in a book or from the internet).
Copying and submitting all or part of another student’s work under your own name.
Cheating in an exam by using unauthorised notes or copying from other students.
Students are supported in their learning of correct procedures to avoid plagiarism.
Consequences of plagiarism
South West TAFE takes the integrity and honesty of its students very seriously. Acts of plagiarism are unacceptable and all forms of plagiarism have severe penalties.

Copyright laws apply to original material, whether in hard copy or electronic format. Copyright applies to:

written materials such as articles, novels, screenplays, poems, lyrics and reports
artistic works such as paintings, drawings, cartoons, sculpture, craft work, photographs, maps and plans
musical works
dramatic works such as dance, plays and mime
computer programs
compilations such as anthologies, directories and databases
cinematographic films
sound recordings
published editions
It doesn’t apply to:

ideas and concepts
(Source: ‘An introduction to copyright in Australia’, Australian Copyright Council, Strawberry Hills, 2007)
You must keep track of any sources quoted and reference them in your assignments. Additional copyright information can be found at the SWTAFE Library website.

All assignment work must be referenced. Assignments will not be assessed if materials are not referenced. For tips on referencing please visit SWTAFE Library website.


Only currently enrolled students are to attend class and it is expected that you will attend 100 per cent of scheduled classes.
If you do not attend at least 80 per cent of the scheduled classes for a subject, you may be ineligible to complete the subject. Notify your teacher in a timely manner if you cannot attend a class.


You are encouraged to ride your bike to class when possible. You must walk, not ride your bike while on campus. Ensure you lock your bike when you leave it on SWTAFE grounds as we are not responsible for stolen or damaged bikes.


South West TAFE Booklist items are required for some courses and can be purchased via Campion Education. Some items are mandatory for the course or optional. They can also be purchased second-hand or via an alternative supplier, please ensure you purchase the correct title and edition.

Click here to find out more

Branding guidelines

You must not utilise the SWTAFE logo without permission for personal use or as part of your assessments through social media, digital or written documentations. This is to ensure the organisation’s brand is protected by standardising all visual expressions of the brand in all forms of communications.

It is your responsibility to:

  • Ensure imagery chosen to promote events aligns with the overall brand. However, the design does not need to be the same as the corporate brand.
  • Student-run events at SWTAFE should only use the logo specifically designed for students.

The use of our name (SWTAFE in any form, including SWTAFE) must not be used on any social media platforms, especially when organising student-run events. This avoids such pages to be available for viewing by the general public when they conduct a search on a web search engine, as the content may not correctly represent SWTAFE according to the branding guidelines.

Please contact your teacher for clarification or email the marketing department marketing@swtafe.edu.au for assistance.

Bringing your own device

You are able to bring your own device to any of our campuses and access our wireless network free of charge. For assistance in accessing the network, please speak with our library staff.

SWTAFE provides a wireless network which is available at each campus for you to use. You can configure your own personal device to access the network.

If you choose to bring your own laptop and device you do so at your own risk and are responsible for the security of these items.

Cafeteria (Warrnambool campus)

McMahons Family Catering is located at the Warrnambool campus and is open all day (subject to change on school holidays) to cater to your every need. Hot and cold breakfasts, lunch and snacks are sold.


SWTAFE has four main campuses:

  • Warrnambool
  • Portland
  • Hamilton
  • Colac

We also deliver training and assessments at Glenormiston, Sherwood Park (Warrnambool), in the workplace, and other
sites as required.

Car parking

Free public parking is available around each of our campuses and training facilities – please refer to the campus map or contact the campus for more information.

Changing your details

You must notify SWTAFE of a change of address or personal details to ensure that results, certificates and course notifications are mailed to the correct address, in your correct name. This can be completed by contacting any customer service centre or online.

This is also the way the State and Federal Government will contact you, particularly in relation to any surveys and VET Student Loan information that may be relevant to you.


A reasonable standard of dress is expected for safety, hygiene and health reasons. Each course has dress code standards for example: wear protective clothing and tie hair back, bare feet, thongs or strapless shoes, shorts and singlets are not permitted in trade and cookery areas.

If you are unsure of clothing requirements for your course, please ask your teacher for clarification.

Code of conduct

We are committed to the provision of high quality and rewarding education and training for all students in an environment
which actively encourages and supports learning for everyone.

To foster these goals we have established this code of conduct to communicate your responsibilities. We believe that by
establishing and communicating these standards we will provide a supportive and equitable learning environment for all students.

Complaints and feedback

If you have a suggestion, compliment, complaint or identified solution to an issue, we want to know about it. In some cases, it may not be possible for us to take any action on the feedback unless content of the feedback can be verified.

Our Audit, Risk and Compliance Manager is our nominated contact for all complaints or feedback issues. You can contact them via the feedback link provided on our website, via forms located in our reception areas or phone 1300 648 911.

We will use this feedback to help improve the quality of our training programs and associated services.


If you require any emergency assistance dial 000 or 0-000 (on a SWTAFE phone).

After calling 000, please dial our Internal Emergency Notification number 777 from a SWTAFE phone or 5564 8777 from other phones to advise SWTAFE staff of the emergency.

If the 777 phone is not answered, leave a message with your name, location, brief description of emergency and return phone number.

If you need emergency services (ambulance, fire and police) phone 000.


You have the right to equal opportunity while studying with us at SWTAFE. We are committed to providing you with an environment to learn within that’s free from discrimination of any kind. We recognise your individual background and circumstances and will work to ensure that our SWTAFE community respects that.

Evacuation procedure

When the fire alarm sounds, or there is an order to evacuate, all those on the premises must evacuate the buildings by the nearest and safest exit, move to, and remain at, the emergency assembly area until given the all clear to re-enter the buildings.

View your relevant campus map with all emergency exits marked.


Fees and charges

Fees and charges information is available on our website, and listed under each course page. The website outlines the enrolment fees and charges including eligibility, concessions and refunds as well as payment options available. Please see the Fees & Free TAFE page for further details. You can also contact our team on 1300 648 911 or via our live chat on our website.

Please note: You are required to arrange a payment plan or commit to paying in full prior to your enrolment being finalised. To ensure full access to all available services, all payments must be up to date. Failing to meet your agreed payment commitment may result in SWTAFE taking action to recover the outstanding amount.

Where this occurs, we reserve the right to recover associated debt collection costs. Be aware that debt collection processes have the potential to affect your future credit rating.

Please talk to us if you feel you may have difficulties in meeting your payment obligations.

First aid and injuries

If you are injured while on campus, report it immediately to your teacher or other SWTAFE staff member so that first aid can be arranged without delay, any hazards controlled and an incident report completed.

If your injury is serious and you are unable to obtain assistance or follow this procedure for any reason, you can call an ambulance yourself by dialling 000 from your mobile or from an internal telephone, dial 0, listen for the dial tone, then dial 000. Then call 5564 8777 to notify us and to obtain further assistance.

Food Lab

Food Lab is a training facility for cookery students to learn the skills required for the hospitality industry at our Warrnambool
campus. It is open to students, staff and the public on selected dates.

General Practitioner Services

SWTAFE, in conjunction with headspace Warrnambool provides an excellent outreach GP service at SWTAFE’s Warrnambool campus (including Sherwood Park) for all students. We welcome all students to take advantage of this free service.

Please contact our student services team to book an appointment.


SWTAFE holds a graduation ceremony each year for those students who successfully complete a diploma or advanced diploma qualification. This ceremony celebrates the personal successes of our students and provides formal recognition of their academic achievements.

A formal invitation will be extended to eligible students and their families to attend the ceremony, where they will have
the opportunity to be presented in an appropriate graduation gown.

Award Ceremonies
Individual teaching centres also hold annual award ceremonies to recognise the achievements of their students who study at
certificate levels.

Internet usage

We encourage you to make use of our computer network and internet for educational purposes. Please ensure you use these sensibly and responsibly.


Our libraries support teaching and learning at SWTAFE by providing:

  • access to relevant, reliable and up to date resources which support the curriculum (both printed and online).
  • facilities which support teaching, individual study and research, the completion of assignments, and group work (computers, software, printers, photocopiers etc.).
  • information skills training and support.

Library opening hours are 9am to 5pm Monday to Friday.


There are lockers available to students at various locations across each campus and generally linked to relevant teaching areas.

Please note: all personal items on SWTAFE grounds, including in student lockers, are left at the risk of the owner. We take
no responsibility for their care and will not replace any items that become lost, damaged or stolen.

Loss, damage or theft

We are not responsible for the loss or damage of your belongings so you are encouraged to label and keep them secure at all times. This includes not leaving valuables and belongings unattended, including in locked classrooms.

If you believe any of your belongings have been stolen it should be reported to a customer service centre and the incident will be followed up by the facilities department.

Mobile phones

You are expected to put your mobile phone on silent and not use it during classes or assessment (unless allowed). We understand that you may need it for special circumstances. Talk to your teacher before class if this is necessary.

NDIS support

We are here to support you, of any ability and background, to create life enhancing opportunities. As a registered NDIS service provider we can provide supports with:

  • assistance with social and community participation
  • assist with daily living 
  • increase social and community participation
  • improved learning and daily living skills.

Call our NDIS team on 5564 8964 for more information on how we can help you.


Local and metropolitan newspapers are available daily in the student lounge, library and cafeteria for you to read.

Parenting facilities

We provide infant change and feeding rooms for your use at Portland, Hamilton and Warrnambool campuses.

Pathways to University

We can provide you with a great stepping stone to study at university. You can start your studies with us via a diploma
course, and then transfer to university to complete your degree. SWTAFE pathways are available in a range of subject areas,
meeting the needs of many courses and career directions. Benefit from having not one, but two qualifications plus you’ll reduce the number of units you need to complete to obtain your university degree.

Find out more about pathways to University.

Providing Third Party Information

Unless you provide us with written permission, we are unable to provide your employer, school or any other third party
with a copy of your Statement of Attainment and/or Certification, even if they have paid for your enrolment. If you require
us to provide a copy of your qualification documents to your employer, school or another third party please complete the
authority to issue documentation to a third party form available on the student portal.

Pure - Hair, Beauty and Wellness Academy

Pure Academy, located at the Warrnambool campus, is SWTAFE’s very own working hair, beauty and wellness academy offering discount treatments to students. Please phone 5564 8848 for a hair, beauty or massage appointment.


Our scholarships and awards aim to create opportunities for those who might not otherwise have access to study, and to
recognise those who have the drive and commitment to achieve their goals. We also offer scholarships that target students in a particular course, or from a particular region or background. 

Each scholarship has its own criteria, and the application process can vary from one scholarship to the next. For more information and how to apply, visit our Scholarships page.

Security services

We offer security services after 5pm Monday to Friday and weekends.

Call 999 from a SWTAFE phone or 5564 8999 to speak directly with security services. Any concerning or suspicious behaviour should be reported to a staff member immediately.

If you need emergency services (ambulance, fire and police) phone 000. Note: If calling from an internal phone you
must dial 0 for an outside line first.

Shop and Save

Now you are a SWTAFE student, you can access great discounts and deals at participating businesses across the region.
Simply show your student ID card to access these range of specials.

Short courses

We offer a range of short courses in the region to assist you to further your skills.

View the full list of offerings and book online. Our customer service team is also happy to assist you in this process.

Skateboards and skates

Skateboards and roller skates are not to be ridden in or around any campus of SWTAFE.

Skills and Jobs Centre

The Skills and Jobs Centre is our central point for all job seekers, career explorers and students wanting advice on their education pathways or job direction.

If you are looking for a job, course advice or how to reskill, the Skills and Jobs Centre should be your first port-of-call. This one-stop-shop offers a range of support services for individuals and businesses.

Come and visit us at Timor Street, Warrnambool or speak to the Customer Service Team at any campus.


SWTAFE is a smoke free environment. Smoking and the use of tobacco products is prohibited on all campuses, property, land and vehicles under the control of SWTAFE. This policy has been implemented to create a healthy and safe environment for all staff, students and associates.

Social media

See our branding guidelines.

Student Hub

This is an area for you to relax and catch up with friends. It is also a place available for food preparation with facilities  including microwaves, sandwich presses, tea, coffee, milk plus hot water for beverages provided free of charge. Please keep these areas tidy. There is also a range of information available at the Student Hub.

Student Services

As a South West TAFE student, you can access a variety of support services that will enhance your study experience and help you complete your studies successfully.


Each year we are required to participate in a national benchmarking survey of our students. As part of enrolling with
us, your nominated contact details may be forwarded to the National Centre for Vocational Education Research (NCVER).
They may either send you a survey or make phone contact with you during and/or following your year of study with us.
If you wish to opt out of receiving survey requests, let us know by ticking the opt out box on your enrolment form or emailing us at learn@swtafe.edu.au


SWTAFE is committed to implementing practices that enhance its social, environmental and economic sustainability.
We are guided by the following sustainability principles:

  • Reuse unnecessary products.
  • Reduce consumption of natural resources.
  • Reuse all materials where possible.
  • Recycle all items where possible.

We encourage you to support our endeavours by adhering to these principles. For our full sustainability policy please visit our website.

Use of image agreement

As a SWTAFE student, you may be asked for imagery to be taken for promotional purposes or as part of activities with us.
Unless you let us know when we take the photo, video or upon enrolment in writing, you agree to us using your image and quotes obtained from you.

This information will be used for purposes only in accordance with the privacy policy available on our website. It can include responses to questions, video footage, imagery, voice recording and place of study that could be used for promotion of SWTAFE in publications, radio, social media, etc.

If you wish to withdraw this authorisation, please let us know in writing by emailing us at learn@swtafe.edu.au.

Unique Student Identifier

If you are undertaking nationally-recognised training delivered by a registered training organisation you will need to have a Unique Student Identifier (USI). This includes studying at SWTAFE or with a private training organisation, completing
an apprenticeship or skill set, certificate or diploma course.

A USI gives you access to your online USI account which is made up of 10 numbers and letters. It will look something like this: 3AW88YH9U5.

A USI account will contain all your nationally recognised training records and results from 1 January 2015 onwards. Your results from 2015 will be available in your USI account in 2016.

Your USI will be collected from you at the time of application. If we miss getting it from you then we will collect it at enrolment. Visit the USI website at usi.gov.au to see your account or contact our customer service centres for more information.

VET Student Loans

If you are enrolling in a diploma or advanced diploma course, you may have the option to defer payment of your tuition fees via a VET Student Loan (VETSL). Other fees associated with your course, or tuition fees over the VETSL course cap, are to be paid by the student and cannot be deferred to a VETSL.

Please see the VET Student Loan page for more information.


SWTAFE provides free wireless access. This wireless access is intended to be available across all campuses. It is not possible for you to connect to SWTAFE’s information systems via a cable connection.

Withdrawals and refunds

It is your responsibility to make an application for a withdrawal or refund. To do this you must contact your teacher or departmental representative to request a course withdrawal or an amendment to your enrolment. 

The date this request is received is your official withdrawal effective date and determines whether tuition and material fees are refunded or credited. For full withdrawal and refund rules please the Cancellations and Withdrawals page.

Zero bullying policy

Bullying is repeated, unreasonable behaviour directed towards another person who creates a risk to their mental or physical health and safety.

We have a policy and procedure for dealing with bullying, and will ensure that any complaints/grievances are dealt with
promptly and effectively. Please contact our customer service team to be directed to our student wellbeing team or the audits and compliance officer.

See also complaints and feedback.