Publication Details

This article was originally published as Abeysekera, I, Issues relating to designing a work-integrated learning program in an undergraduate accounting degree program and its implications for the curriculum, Asia-Pacific Journal of Cooperative Education, 7(1), 2006, 7-15. Original journal information available here


Work-integrated learning (WIL) programs are becoming popular with students, government, employers, and universities. A major benefit of a WIL program is the increased employability of students, and this matches well with the present trend whereby students expect a pay-off from their investment in education. Although WIL programs are more common in some profession-based undergraduate courses than others, they have not been frequently discussed in relation to accounting in the Australian context. This paper discusses issues related to designing a WIL program for an undergraduate accounting program in an Australian context. The importance of WIL programs in general is followed by discussion on how WIL, work and knowledge are related to each other. The types of available WIL programs are discussed in relation to their applicability to an accounting program. Issues relating to designing a successful WIL program are discussed by its accounting faculty, academics, employers, professional accounting bodies and the government as stakeholders in the program. The WIL program’s implications for the accounting curriculum are also discussed.