Courses Handbook 2008

310511 v.1 Master of Arts (Community Development Practice and Social Policy)

MSW(Curtin), MA(Curtin).

Course CRICOS Code: 059013G
Registered full-time Duration for International Onshore Students on student visas: 1.5 Years


This is an advanced degree with two majors to select from. The Community Development Practice major facilitates the acquisition of advanced knowledge and practice skills. It prepares graduates for the challenges of the contemporary workplace. Core units explore perceptions of community, the numerous roles involved in community practice, and expectations of 'community' in changing contexts. Key principles include human rights, participation, empowerment and reflective practice, which are reframed through discussions of current initiatives and debates. Students can specialise further by choosing between the Community Practice or the Community and Social Development streams. The Social Policy major is designed for students from diverse backgrounds who seek to develop advanced understanding of social policy and practice. It provides an opportunity to explore theoretical approaches to the study of social policy and the skills to analyse and participate in policy making in a wide range of settings. While the course is designed as generic in its framework, it draws on special areas of expertise and it explores content from a comparative and global perspective. This allows development of knowledge, practice and research skills in an area of specialisation.

Course Entry Requirements/Prerequisites

A four year degree in a related discipline and a minimum of twelve months documented relevant work experience or a three year degree in a related discipline as well as a Graduate Diploma in a related area with a course weighted average of at least 70 per cent, and a minimum of twelve months documented relevant work experience.

Recognition of Prior Learning

Applications for recognition of prior learning are assessed on an individual basis. No more than two units will be exempted in this program.

Duration and Availability

This course is of 18 months full-time or equivalent part-time study. International onshore students on student visa's are not permitted to study on a part-time basis. Delivery of the units within this program includes late afternoon and early evening on-campus lectures and weekend lecture/workshops. The Department endeavours to alternate times of on-campus lectures for the convenience of students. Lectures, practical exercises, role-plays, videos, discussions and client stories contribute to a variedand engaging learning atmosphere.

Course Organisation

The Master of Arts has six units in common, various optional units and four discipline specific units. There are two majors to select from within this program, the Community Development Practice Major and the Social Policy Major.

Career Opportunities

The employment opportunities for practitioners with a Master of Arts (Community Development Practice) are both diverse and growing. In the public sector Community Development workers are employed in agencies such as the Department for Community Development, Disability Services Commission and Centrelink. A rapidly growing number of community development workers are also employed in non-government agencies, community groups and in the private sector, including agencies providing family support services, youth services, community legal services, migrant services, emergency housing. A Master of Arts (Community Development Practice) is highly regarded internationally. Social Policy Major - The employment opportunities for graduates with a Master of Arts (Social Policy) are both diverse and growing. Graduates are employed in both Commonwealth and State Government Departments. A growing number of graduates are also employed in non-government organisations in policy development and advocacy roles, including umbrella organisations in the social services field. A Master of Arts (Social Policy) is highly regarded internationally.

Additional Course Expenses

Students may be expected to purchase a number of textbooks, readers and other essential study materials.

Course Structure Disclaimer

Curtin University reserves the right to alter the internal composition of any course to ensure learning outcomes retain maximum relevance. Any changes to the internal composition of a course will protect the right of students to complete the course within the normal timeframe and will not result in additional cost to students through a requirement to undertake additional units.

Course Structure Hrs/Wk Credit
Majors, Streams or Other Core Components
310512 v.1   Social Policy Major (within Master of Arts Community Development Practice) 300.0
310513 v.1   Community Develoment Practice Major (within Master of Arts Community Development Practice) 300.0


Year Location Period All* Internal Partially Online Internal^ External Fully Online#
2008 Bentley Campus Semester 1   Y      
2008 Bentley Campus Semester 2   Y      

The information displayed above refers to study periods and locations where the course is available for first time entry. Students are normally only offered or admitted to a course once.

*The course itself may not be available either solely internally or externally but individual units may be offered in either or both of those modes. Prospective students should contact the Course Coordinator for further information.

^Course and associated units are offered in this mode permitting International Onshore student enrolment.

#Course and associated units are offered in this online only mode and DO NOT permit International Onshore student enrolment.

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