Internship and Practicum Information
Integrative Studies majors are required to complete at least 2 credits of experiential learning through an Internship or Practicum (INT 490/491) as part of their major. This requirement provides supervised work experience through which students can integrate their academic studies with practice. Student, faculty, and advisors agree on the scope of the study, workplan, and methods of evaluation.
Students enrolled in the LEADS Program should complete the LEADS Practicum Workplan. Once approved, you will be issued a permit to register for INT 491 in the 6 week semester, or semesters, you have indicated.
All other students should follow the instructions below to identify an internship experience and complete an Internship Application via the GVSU Career Center's IMS system. Once approved, you will be issued a permit to register for INT 490.
For assistance locating internship or professional opportunities (available to all campuses)
Registration Instructions and Preparation
Integrative Studies Students (all campuses):
Students are required to attend an Internship Workshop or meet with their faculty advisor to discuss internship placement and complete required paperwork. They are encouraged to begin locating opportunities and discussing plans with their faculty advisor at least one semester prior to registering for Internship. Workshops will be announced via email. After attending the workshop and obtaining an internship, students should electronically submit their internship agreement via the Internship Management Site. Consult the Internship Agreement Procedure for helpful information.
Please contact Kate Fairman ([email protected]) with questions regarding an internship. You may also call (616)331-8020 or email the IRIS Department at [email protected].
LEADS Program Students (all campuses):
LEADS Program students should submit a LEADS Practicum Workplan proposal for approval prior to registering for INT 491 (Practicum). Unlike internship which typically involves physically carrying out specific tasks or doing a job in a professional or community-based setting, a practicum focuses on observation, documentation, and/or planning.
Please contact Krista Benson ([email protected]) with questions regarding an internship. You may also call (616)331-8020 or email the IRIS Department at [email protected].
Internship & Practicum FAQ
Q. What is the difference between an internship and a practicum?
A: An internship and educational practicum share the same goal: supporting students to apply skills learned in your studies in a professional or community-based setting. While the intent of both experiences is the same, the purpose and scope of these experiences is different. Internship typically involves physically carrying out specific tasks or doing a job in a professional or community-based setting. Practicum focuses on observation, documentation, and/or planning.
Q: How many credits of internship or Practicum must an Integrative Studies student complete to fulfill the major requirement?
A: Integrative Studies majors are required to complete 2 credit hours of INT 490 (Internship) or INT 491 (Practicum), but may complete more if desired.
Q: How many credits of internship can be taken in one semester?
A: Students can take no more than 6 credits of internship (INT 490) in any single 12-15 week semester. INT 491 (Practicum) is limited to 1-2 credits max in any 6 week semester.
Q: How many hours of work are required per credit hour of Internship or Practicum?
A: Each credit hour is equivalent to 50 hours of work at your internship site or toward your practicum project.
Q: If interning at two separate locations, must an internship agreement form be submitted for each site?
A: Yes. Each internship agreement contains site specific information.
Q: Can students register for INT 490 or INT 491 prior to submitting a learning agreement through the Internship Management System (IMS) or LEADS Practicum Workplan?
A: No, a site supervisor must approve the learning agreement and objectives through IMS before a permit can be issued. LEADS Practicum Workplans must be approved by the supervising faculty member.
Q: If an internship agreement or practicum workplan has been approved, why is there a registration error in Banner when adding the course?
A: Students may not register until a permit is put in place which occurs after an agreement or workplan is approved. Please wait for an email from the IRIS Department with registration instructions.
Q: How is an internship placement approved?
A: Students must submit a learning agreement through the Internship Management System, in which learning objectives and contact information for a site supervisor should be included. The site supervisor will receive an email requesting approval. Once approved by the site supervisor, the internship coordinator will approve the agreement and issue a registration permit.
Q: How do students log into the Internship Management System or LEADS Practicum Workplan?
A: Students should log in using their GVSU issued network username and password. This is the same information used to log onto campus computers.