Work-integrated learning (WIL)

Emerging recommendations available in report

The Work-Integrated Learning (WIL) Working Group has developed a report to support the taumata (Curriculum Framework Transformation principles) and the subset of WIL emerging recommendations in the Curriculum Framework (CF) Consultation Paper. This Supporting Report captures our proposals and has comprehensive appendices detailing our consultation and research findings.

The Report is not finalised; it represents the current state of ideas that lay the groundwork for emphasising WIL in the Waipapa ‎Taumata ‎Rau | University of Auckland curriculum. These ideas will continue to be developed ahead of formal consultation in July/Aug 2022.


Work-integrated learning (WIL) refers to an educational approach where work-based experiences are interwoven with theoretical learning as an intentional part of a programme’s curriculum.

WIL is identified as a specific priority area for Education and Student Experience in Taumata Teitei: “Provide credit-bearing and partnered transdisciplinary, research-led, experiential, international and industry-based/ Work-Integrated Learning experiences for all students.” Other priorities for Education and Student Experience relevant to the context and success of WIL are transdisciplinarity, te ao Māori, working with Pacific communities, Te Tiriti accountabilities, pedagogical innovation, collaborative practice and student engagement

The WIL Working Groups have been exploring how such an approach might fit within or inform the development of the Curriculum Framework Transformation. This exploratory work has been carried out with an initial emphasis on undergraduate programmes.


The terms outlined below have a distinct meaning in the context of this project. 

Work-integrated learning (WIL): defined as "an educational approach that uses relevant work-based experiences to allow students to integrate theory with the meaningful practice of work as an intentional component of the curriculum.” (used by Universities NZ).

Defining elements of this educational approach requires that students engage in reciprocal, authentic and meaningful work, typically involving three stakeholders: the student, the University, and external partners. The approach taken encompasses the principles of aroha, reciprocity, manaakitanga, and whanaungatanga, which are emphasised to enhance the relational space between communities, other external partners, and the whenua.

WIL activities are diverse and take place within and alongside courses, both on and/or off campus, and with different levels of engagement.

Work: This is interpreted across a broad range of manifestations and contexts, including:

  • Private sector
  • Public sector
  • Non-government organisations
  • Iwi, hapū
  • Communities

Employability: This is interpreted as competencies, such as:

  • Skills
  • Knowledge
  • Networks
  • Personal attributes

The Phase 1 WIL Working Group included the following members:

Professor Deidre Brown (CAI), Co-Chair, Dr John Egan (FMHS), Co-Chair, Dr Paramvir Singh (Science), Dr David Mayeda (Arts), Dr Helen Delaney (B&E), Dr Jeroen Schillewaert, Dr Murray Ford (Science), Associate Professor Jennifer Lees-Marshment (Arts), Chris Moselen (Te Tumu Herenga Libraries and Learning Services), Dr Michael Hodgson (Engineering), Nicky Bermingham (RAA), Jerry Lo (EDSW), Bronwyn Davies (Law), Professor Mark Vickers (Liggins/LSRI), Sarah Moyne (CDES)

The Phase 2 Working Group includes:

Dr John Egan, Assoc Prof Jennifer Lees-Marshment (Arts), Jerry Lo (EDSW), Makayla Muhundan (AUSA), Martin Brook (Science), Sarah Moyne (CDES).

Get in touch

For general enquiry, please email the Curriculum Framework Transformation Programme at