Charles Sturt University
Charles Sturt University

Study Visit Guidelines

A Study Visit is a four (4) day organised field trip to a major city or regional location where students, accompanied by School of Information Studies staff, visit a range of library and information work environments.

Study Visits are a compulsory part of your course and are designed to demonstrate the diversity of professional practice across the industry.


The School of Information Studies offers a choice of study visits each year, and students are advised to register for their preferred study visit in InPlace as early as possible. Limits do apply, and registration will close when the study visit has been filled to capacity.


Programs vary from location to location, and a typical study visit might involve 7 to 9 visits over the four days to either a state library, a university library, public libraries, special libraries, corporate libraries and school libraries, and possibly a bookseller, publisher, subscription agency or other information related agency. Programs generally do not become available until 3 weeks prior to the start of the study visit.

Lecturers from the library and information studies and the teacher librarianship disciplines convene the study visits. A study visit program usually involves a preliminary briefing by the convening lecturer, a social gathering at some central point and a closing session on the afternoon of Day Four.

Visits to the libraries and information agencies generally follow a similar format and can include:

  • a welcome and brief address establishing the role of the library within its organisation;
  • an introduction to the range of services;
  • panel presentations on major contemporary issues, with Q&A discussion;
  • a conducted tour for the group with further opportunity for questions and discussion.

Study Visits which attract large groups typically offer parallel sessions and students are required to make their choices from a range of library types, in order to experience a broad view of professional practice.

You can view previous study visit programs here.


The majority of libraries, or their parent organisations, maintain a Web presence, which will be linked via the study visit programs. It is recommended that students spend some time previewing the hosting organisations' websites prior to the study visit.

Attendance and punctuality for all sessions extends courtesy and interest in the programs on offer. Attendance is monitored and students are required to sign the attendance sheet at each site visited.

Student Responsibilities

Student responsibilities are to:

  • register for your preferred study visit as soon as possible with the Workplace Learning Officer via our registration process InPlace;
  • contact the Workplace Learning Officer as soon as possible if you have to change your contact details or your study visit registration;
  • arrange travel, accommodation and meals as appropriate;
  • be punctual at all times;
  • actively participate in the study visit;
  • sign the attendance sheet at each site visited;
  • complete the assessment item comprising of reflective journal entries, 1 week after the completion of the study visit via the subject's Interact site

Independent study visits

An independent study visit can only be undertaken with the approval, and to the requirements of, the subject coordinator. In order to undertake an independent study visit you need:

  • to demonstrate to your subject coordinator that it is not viable for you to attend one of the study visits;
  • the permission of your subject coordinator;
  • to select six or seven information agencies of different types, e.g., a school library, public library, university library, government departmental library, business library such as a law firm's library, a parliamentary library, an information-research service, museum, gallery a library vendor, specialist archives or other type of information agency which you propose to visit. You should discuss your selection with your subject coordinator and gain their approval of your choice. Each information agency needs to have at least one full-time professional staff member;
  • to contact the subject coordinator with a prospectve list of sites that you wish to visit;
  • if approved, upload the details into InPlace (instructions will be provided following approval);
  • to approach approved information agencies to request permission to visit and to discuss their roles and operations with a senior staff member and/or overview areas of the information agency with individual staff members;
  • to visit the approved information agencies over a period approved by the subject coordinator (at approx. two hours per library) and provide evidence of having done so (such as a signed business card, confirmation via email from the workplace host or a short letter on official letterhead);
  • to submit journal entry reflections on the independent study site visits as per the same guidelines given in the assessment section of this subject outline.