There is increasing emphasis in higher education on preparing students for the workplace and recognising the learning that occurs in the workplace. Workplace learning has been exemplified in aspects of traditional courses by work experience, practicum, sandwich courses and practice-based courses. Recently, however, academic attention has focused on the development of subjects and degree programs that are entirely workplace-based. Such programs are negotiated with organisations to meet their own learning needs and promote the learning of individual company employees in the performance of their everyday work. Workplace-based courses have developed in response to employer demand, restricted government funding for higher education and the need for universities to appeal to new markets. These factors have created a context of considerable tension between traditional academic practice and beliefs, and those that accompany this new approach. These tensions present challenges for universities as they attempt to respond in ways that maintain rigour and integrity while meeting the demands created by contemporary economic, political and social pressures.