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Social welfare course contributes to expanding industry


Steve Spinks
25 September 2012
Southern Cross University will add to its suite of humanities and social science courses by offering a Bachelor of Social Welfare from 2013. The degree will qualify graduates as welfare and community services workers.

The course has been designed to meet the increasing demand for professionals in the community services industry.

Associate Professor Mark Hughes, course coordinator for the Bachelor of Social Welfare, said job growth in the social welfare sector was very strong and was expected to be so for the next decade.

“The demand for degree-qualified welfare workers is particularly high in regional areas, where the federal government has identified skills shortages in the community services sector,” Professor Hughes said.

The Bachelor of Social Welfare is a three year, fulltime degree offered at Southern Cross University’s Gold Coast campus and by distance education. Students can also study part-time. The degree will provide the theoretical and practical foundation for work in the human services industry.

During their studies, students will gain skills in case management, community development, counselling, social research, policy work, advocacy, and grief and loss counselling. A particular emphasis will be placed on social justice and human rights as the basis for social welfare practice.

Typically, graduates will find employment across a number of fields such as child protection, disability services, housing services, youth work, aged care, alcohol and drug rehabilitation, community engagement, mental health services and domestic violence services.

The University is seeking accreditation with the Australian Community Workers Association (ACWA) for this degree and in-line with ACWA requirements, students will undertake 400 hours of on-the-job training.

Photo: Associate Professor Mark Hughes