Work experience

We offer high school science students the chance to gain first-hand experience of our core research in a scientific environment. Applications for 2016 have now closed and will reopen in 2017 for next year's program.

Our work experience program aims to give students the opportunity to:

  • Gain insight and experience into CSIRO’s everyday work, which involves solving the big questions facing our country and planet
  • Enquire about the type of work being undertaken at CSIRO
  • Find out the types jobs that are available in the science industry
  • Gain relevant work experience and/or skills
  • Explore their interests
  • Align school studies with career aspirations.

Conditions of participation

You have to be a student in Years 10, 11 or 12 and enrolled in an Australian secondary school.

Work experience requires you to attend for 'work' at specific times and comply with instructions from your 'supervisor' Host. You will be required to follow our Code of Conduct, Values and Occupational Health Safety and Environment policies. Travel to and from the worksite is the responsibility of the student.

Placements can be ended by CSIRO at any time because of: misbehaviour, poor attendance, not following instructions, risk to staff or if resources to manage the placement become unavailable.

Frequently asked questions

When can I apply for a work experience placement?

Applications for 2016 are now closed. Applications for 2017 will open early 2017.

I applied for 2016 work experience, when will I hear back?

We received over 1000 applications for our 2016 program. We are advising successful applicants from March till early June. If you have not heard from us by early June we encourage you to investigate other options.

How can I check the status of my application?

There is no option to check the status of an application. If your school requires you to advise them of your placement location before the start of June we encourage you to investigate other options.

Will I have to compete for a place?

In some circumstances, yes. We receive many more applications each year than the number of opportunities available.

I'm not in Year 10, 11 or 12 can I still apply?

Our work experience program is only open to students currently enrolled in years 10, 11 and 12 and completing studies at an Australian high school.

How long are placements?

Placements usually last for five days, between Monday to Friday.

When do placements occur?

Placements will usually occur during May through to December, excluding your state's school holidays.

What paperwork do I need to provide?

If your application is successful we will then require you to submit a work experience agreement form which your school will provide you with.

This form needs to be signed by yourself, your school, your parent/guardian and our Work Experience Host.

Can I apply for work experience placements that are in a different state to the one which I live in?

This is not recommended but you may apply for positions in another state. However, we will need to have written permission from your parent/guardian.

If your application for a placement in another state is successful you will require parent/guardian supervision for the duration of your placement.

We do not cover the costs of any expenses incurred as a result of an interstate placement.

Opportunities for Indigenous students

We encourages applications from Indigenous students, and if you wish, we can introduce you to one or more of our Indigenous staff members.

We have Indigenous staff in metropolitan and regional sites in every state and territory. They work in various areas of research and administration including:

  • Minerals/resources
  • Environmental sciences
  • Energy technology
  • Land and water
  • Materials science and engineering
  • Agricultural sciences
  • Food and nutrition
  • Oceans and atmospheric research
  • Information and communication technologies
  • Finance and human resources
  • Communication

The positions they hold include Research Scientists and Engineers, Research Projects, Technical and Administrative Officers.


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