Master of Social Work (coursework)

Social workers are concerned with psychosocial problems; their causes, their solutions and their human impacts. Social workers work with individuals, families, groups, organisations and communities, and are committed to social justice and human rights.

In their practice, social workers deal with diverse issues such as the personal experience of people in difficulty, working with them towards effecting appropriate change. They are also concerned with broader organisational and social aspects of disadvantage, which impinge on the experience of individuals, and they seek to bring about change at community and policy levels in accordance with the values of the social work profession. It is a challenging, but potentially very rewarding profession, which attracts people with a high level of social commitment who are looking for a job in which they can put that commitment into practice in a positive and significant way.

The Master of Social Work is accredited by the professional association, Australian Association of Social Workers (AASW). Graduates of the course are eligible for membership of the AASW, and this is the commonly accepted standard for professional recognition throughout Australia. The degree is also well recognised internationally, and many graduates obtain employment overseas.

Course overview

Course title
Master of Social Work (coursework)
Award abbreviation
MSW
Course code
11550
Course type
master's degree by coursework only
Status
current / 2021
Administered by
Allied Health
CRICOS code
065091K

Course details

Intake periods
Beginning of year only
Attendance type
full- or part-time (Student visa holders should read Education Services for Overseas Students Act 2000 for more information.)
Credit points required
96
A standard full-time load is 24 points per semester.
Professional accreditation
Master of Social Work (coursework) is accredited by: Australian Association of Social Workers (AASW).
Standard course duration
2 years
Time limit
5 years
Delivery mode
internal
Locations offered
UWA (Perth)
Domestic fee type
Commonwealth supported and/or HECS-HELP
Available to international students
Yes. For information on international student fees see 'Schedule 2: Fees'. (Enquiries: https://www.uwa.edu.au/askuwa)
Course Coordinator(s)
Dr Susan Young
Fees
Visit the fees calculator.

Prospective students should see the Future Students website for details on admission requirements, intake periods, fees, availability to international students, careers information etc.

Course structure

Key to availability of units:
S2 = Semester 2; NS = non-standard teaching period

All units have a value of six points unless otherwise stated.

Take all units (96 points):

AvailabilityUnitcodeUnitnameUnit requirementsContact hours
NSSWSP5301Foundations of Social Work Thinking and Identity
Prerequisites:
enrolment in the Master of Social Work course.
Co-requisites:
Nil.
Incompatibility:
Nil.
3 hours per week x 12 weeks
NSSWSP5306Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Knowledges and Practices for Social Work
Prerequisites:
enrolment in the Master of Social Work course.
Co-requisites:
Nil.
Incompatibility:
Nil.
3 hours per week x 12 weeks
NSSWSP5309Field Education 1: First Placement (18 points)
Prerequisites:
SWSP5306 Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Knowledges and Practices for Social Work SWSP5630 Social Work Methods 1: Introduction to Psychosocial Theory SWSP5301 Foundations of Social Work Thinking and Identity SWSP5631 Social Work Methods 2: Theory for Practice - Working with People
Co-requisites:
Nil
Incompatibility:
Nil.
450 hours over 13 weeks full-time
S2SWSP5406Social Work Methods 4: Consolidating Theory and Practice
Prerequisites:
SWSP5306 Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Knowledges and Practices for Social Work SWSP5630 Social Work Methods 1: Introduction to Psychosocial Theory SWSP5301 Foundations of Social Work Thinking and Identity SWSP5631 Social Work Methods 2: Theory for Practice - Working with People SWSP5633 Social Work Methods 3: Evidence Based Practice-Counselling SWSP5309 Field Education One: First Placement SWSP5429 Field Education Two: Final Placement
Co-requisites:
SWSP5409 Applied Social Work Practices SWSP5634 Social Work and Mental Health Practice SWSP5632 Legal and Organisational Contexts for Social Work
Incompatibility:
Nil.
3 hrs per week x 12 weeks
NSSWSP5407Research Methods in Social Work
Prerequisites:
enrolment in the Master of Social Work course.
Co-requisites:
Nil.
Incompatibility:
Nil.
6 hours per week x 6 weeks
S2SWSP5409Applied Social Work Practices
Prerequisites:
SWSP5306 Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Knowledges and Practices for Social Work SWSP5630 Social Work Methods 1: Introduction to Psychosocial Theory SWSP5301 Foundations of Social Work Thinking and Identity SWSP5631 Social Work Methods 2: Theory for Practice - Working with People SWSP5633 Social Work Methods 3: Evidence Based Practice-Counselling SWSP5309 Field Education One: First Placement SWSP5429 Field Education Two: Final Placement
Co-requisites:
SWSP5406 Social Work Methods 4: Consolidating Theory and Practice SWSP5634 Social Work and Mental Health Practice SWSP5632 Legal and Organisational Contexts for Social Work
Incompatibility:
Nil.
3 hours per week x 12 weeks
NSSWSP5429Field Education 2: Final Placement (18 points)
Prerequisites:
SWSP5301 Foundations of Social Work Thinking and Identity SWSP5630 Social Work Methods 1: Introduction to Psychosocial Theory SWSP5306 Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Knowledges and Practices for Social Work SWSP5309 Field Education One: First Placement SWSP5631 Social Work Methods 2: Theory for Practice - Working with People SWSP5633 Social Work Methods 3: Evidenced Based Practice-Counselling
Co-requisites:
Nil.
Incompatibility:
Nil.
550 hours x 16 weeks full-time
NSSWSP5630Social Work Methods 1: Introduction to Psychosocial Theory
Prerequisites:
enrolment in the Master of Social Work course.
Co-requisites:
Nil.
Incompatibility:
Nil.
3 hours per week x 12 weeks
NSSWSP5631Social Work Methods 2: Theory for Practice - Working with People
Prerequisites:
Enrolment in Master of Social Work programme.
Co-requisites:
nil
Incompatibility:
Nil.
3 hours per week x 12 weeks
S2SWSP5632Legal and Organisational Contexts for Social Work
Prerequisites:
enrolment in the Master of Social Work course.
Co-requisites:
Nil.
Incompatibility:
Nil.
3 hours per week x 12 weeks
NSSWSP5633Social Work Methods 3: Evidence Based Practice-Counselling
Prerequisites:
SWSP5306 Aboriginal and Torres Strait islander Knowledges and Practices for Social Work SWSP5631 Social Work Methods 2: Theory for Practice - Working with People SWSP5309 Field Education 1: First Placement SWSP5301 Foundations of Social Work Thinking and Identity SWSP5630 Social Work Methods 1: Introduction to Psychosocial Theory
Co-requisites:
Nil.
Incompatibility:
Nil.
6 hours per week x 6 weeks
S2SWSP5634Social Work and Mental Health Practice
Prerequisites:
SWSP5630: Social Work Methods 1: Introduction to Psychosocial Theory SWSP5301 Foundations of Social Work Thinking and Identity SWSP5306 Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Knowledges and Practices for Social Work SWSP5631 Introduction to Social Work Methods 2: Theory for Practice - Working with People SWSP5633 Research Methods 3: Evidence Based Practice-Counselling SWSP5309 Field Education 1: First Placement
Co-requisites:
Nil.
Incompatibility:
Nil.
3 hours per week

See also the rules for the course and the Student Rules.

Rules

Applicability of the Student Rules, policies and procedures

1.(1) The Student Rules apply to students in this course.

(2) The policy, policy statements and guidance documents and student procedures apply, except as otherwise indicated in the rules for this course.

Academic Conduct Essentials and Communication and Research Skills modules

2.(1) Except as stated in (2), a student who enrols in this course for the first time irrespective of whether they have previously been enrolled in another course of the University, must undertake the Academic Conduct Essentials module (the ACE module) and the Communication and Research Skills module (the CARS module).

(2) A student who has previously achieved a result of Ungraded Pass (UP) for the CARS module is not required to repeat the module.

(3) A student must successfully complete the ACE module within the first teaching period of their enrolment. Failure to complete the module within this timeframe will result in the student's unit results from this teaching period being withheld. These results will continue to be withheld until students avail themselves of a subsequent opportunity to achieve a passing grade in the ACE module. In the event that students complete units in subsequent teaching periods without completing the ACE module, these results will similarly be withheld. Students will not be permitted to submit late review or appeal applications regarding results which have been withheld for this reason and which they were unable to access in the normally permitted review period.

English Language competency requirements

3.(1) To be considered eligible for consideration for admission to this course an applicant must satisfy the University's English language competence requirement as set out in the University Policy on Admission: Coursework, except as otherwise indicated in the rules for this course.

(2) Applicants with qualifications from overseas institutions where English is not the medium of instruction as recognised by the Australian Association of Social Workers (AASW), must provide evidence of English language competence. and

(3) Applicants presenting with the IELTS Academic require an overall score of at least 7.0 and no band less than 7.0 at time of application.

Admission requirements

4. To be considered for admission to this course an applicant must have—

(a) a bachelor's degree, or an equivalent qualification, as recognised by UWA.

and

(b) the equivalent of a Faculty Grade Point Average (GPA) of at least 5.0.

Admission ranking and selection

5. Where relevant, admission will be awarded to the highest ranked applicants or applicants selected based on—

(a) the grade point average;

and

(b) the intake quota for the year

Articulations and exit awards

6. This course does not form part of an articulated sequence.

Course structure

7.(1) The course consists of units to a total value of 96 points.

(2) Units must be selected in accordance with the course structure, as set out in these rules.

Satisfactory progress

8. To make satisfactory progress in a calendar year a student must—

(a) after the final date for withdrawal with academic penalty students must pass all required units each semester before progressing to the next semester; and

(b) pass all practicum units in their enrolment. and

(c)(i) students who fail one or more units in semester 1 of Year 1 may enrol in SWSP5407 Research Methods in Social Work in semester 2 of Year 1;

(ii) Students who fail SWSP5429 Field Education 2 in semester 1 of Year 2 may enrol in SWSP5632 Legal & Organisational Contexts for Social Work and SWSP5634 Social Work & Mental Health Practice in semester 2 of Year 2;

and

(d) except for (c) students who fail to make satisfactory progress will be required to take approved leave for the succeeding semester and repeat the failed units in the next year; and

(e) maintain a minimum attendance att classes of at least 80%

and

(f) comply with the Course Progression Rules as outlined in the the supplementary document 'Master of Social Work Progression rules'.

[(b) is an approved addition to University Policy]

9. A student who has not achieved a result of Ungraded Pass (UP) for the Communication and Research Skills module (the CARS module) when their progress status is assessed will not have made satisfactory progress even if they have met the other requirements for satisfactory progress in Rule 8.

Progress status

10.(1) Students who fail to make satisfactory progress under Rule 8 after being enrolled at the University for one or two semesters only are assigned a progress status of 'On Probation' by the Faculty.

(2) Unless the Faculty determines otherwise in exceptional circumstances, students who fail to make satisfactory progress under Rule 8 and who have been enrolled at the University for more than two semesters are assigned a progress status of 'Suspended' by the Faculty.

(3) Unless the Faculty determines otherwise in exceptional circumstances, students who have previously been allocated a progress status of 'Suspended' and fail again to make satisfactory progress under Rule 8 are assigned a progress status of 'Excluded' by the Faculty.

11. A student who does not make satisfactory progress in terms of Rule 9 is assigned the progress status of 'On Probation', unless they have been assigned a progress status of 'Suspended' or 'Excluded' for failure to meet other satisfactory progress requirements in Rule 8.

Award with distinction

12. To be awarded the degree with distinction a student must achieve a course weighted average mark (WAM) of at least 80 per cent which is calculated based on—

(a) all units above Level 3 attempted as part of the course that are awarded a final percentage mark;

(b) all relevant units above Level 3 undertaken in articulating courses of this University that are awarded a final percentage mark;

and

(c) all units above Level 3 completed at this University that are credited to the master's degree course.

Deferrals

13. Applicants awarded admission to the course are entitled to a deferral of up to 12 months, as per the University Policy on: Admissions (Coursework).


Additional rules
Time limit

14.(1) Unless the Faculty approves an extension, the time limit is five years from the beginning of the semester in which the first unit is credited towards the course.

(2) Where a student is permitted to credit a unit or units from a completed degree course, the credit dates from the year of first enrolment in the course for the degree of Master of Social Work.

(3) Where a student is permitted to credit a unit or units from an incomplete degree course, the credit dates from the year in which the unit or units concerned were passed.

Enrolment in practicum units

15. Unless the Faculty, in recognition of exceptional circumstances and on the recommendation of the Head of the School of Allied Health, approves otherwise, students must undertake both practicums on a full-time basis even if a student elects to enrol in the course part-time.

Withdrawal from practicum units

16. A student who withdraws from a practicum unit after confirmation of placement with the host organisation is declared to have failed the unit unless the Faculty, having considered the advice of the Head of the School of Allied Health, is satisfied that there were exceptional circumstances to justify withdrawal.

[Approved addition to University Policy]

Failure of practicum units

17. The Faculty will consider the case of a student who fails a practicum unit and, after considering the advice of the Head of the School of Allied Health, will—

(a) permit the student to repeat the practicum;

or

(b) permit the student to repeat the practicum following satisfactory prior completion of specified additional relevant work;

or

(c) exclude the student from re-enrolment in the course.

Faculty Infection Control Requirements

18. At admission and during enrolment, students must comply with the Faculty's Infection Control Requirements, appended to the relevant UWA Admission and Student Enrolment policies.

Professional Behaviour

19. Breaches of Professional Behaviour will be managed according to the Faculty's Procedures appended to the UWA Courses: Experiential Learning Policy

Requirement to attend

20.(1) Students must maintain a minimum attendance rate of at least 80% at lecture/seminars, integration groups and other forms of interactive/small group teaching and learning.

(2) If a student fails to maintain an attendance rate of at least 80% s/he shall be taken to have not satisfied the requirements of the unit, unless absences are formally approved in writing by applying for Special Consideration.

Australian National Police Clearance

21. At admission and annually during enrolment, students must provide a clear current Australian National Police Clearance or equivalent certification.