Information on this page is for Australian residents

Not required*
*Offers made in 2018. More about ATAR
4 years full time or longer for part time

Applications are not being taken at this time


Play a crucial role in helping people to improve their wellbeing and resolve issues.

Social work focuses on improving people’s quality of life and helping them to realise their potential – whether you’re working with individuals, families, groups or communities.

The industry empowers people to use the resources available to them to help make a change to their personal issues or those affecting the communities they live in.

VU’s Bachelor of Social Work (Honours) builds on the knowledge gained through the Bachelor of Social Work, offering research experience, advanced analytical skills and theoretical background.

Upon graduation, you can choose to pursue a higher degree in research or use your qualification to practise as a professional social worker within:

  • local government human services
  • federal and state government
  • hospitals and community health centres
  • non-government and community-managed human services organisations.

Social Work Field Education is an essential part of this degree. You’ll complete two industry-based placements in different human service agency settings, under the supervision of experienced social workers.

VU’s Social Work Field Education Manual offers plenty of information about our placement arrangements and requirements.

We believe in inclusivity, diversity and opportunity. Studying with us means you’ll be learning in an environment that values community empowerment.

Victoria University received the highest rating of five stars for cultural diversity by the Good Universities Guide. Our students feel fortunate to learn in a setting that has such a rich representation of cultures.

VU also works to address refugee issues, tackle diversity and social inclusion issues and improve the health and social wellbeing of the region. We are proud of our varied cultural and community engagement projects with culturally and linguistically diverse (CALD) and Indigenous communities.

Delivery mode

Face to Face

Careers in social work

VU graduates typically find employment within not-for-profit and charitable organisations, as well as community and government sectors.

Typical roles include:

  • school social worker
  • hospital social worker
  • homelessness policy officer
  • community health centre counsellor
  • local government youth or community development worker
  • drug and alcohol worker
  • sexual assault centre counsellor or advocate.


Employment for social workers in Australia rose very strongly over the last five years and is expected to continue growing very strongly until at least November 2020 (Job Outlook). 

The median starting salaries of bachelor degree social work graduates (aged under 25 and in their first full-time employment) is $56,000 (GradStats).

The average annual earnings of a social worker is $64,948 (Job Outlook).

Course structure

To attain the Bachelor of Social Work (Honours) students will be required to complete 384 credit points, consisting of:

  • 96 credit points of First Year Core studies;
  • 156 credit points of remaining Core Social Work studies;
  • 2 x 36 credit points of Field Education studies (inclusive of 1,000 hours of Placement);
  • 60 credit points of Research studies.

First Year Core Units

Year 2

Semester 1:

Semester 2:

Year 3

Semester 1:

Semester 2:

Year 4

Semester 1:

Semester 2:

We've changed the way we teach our courses, so that you experience a first year like no other - focused on you and your success.

From 2018, the first-year of this bachelor degree* will see units delivered one at a time, in four-week blocks. This means you won't have to juggle the deadlines and demands of studying multiple units at once. Instead you'll complete one unit before moving on to the next.

All units will be conducted in small class sizes with three face-to-face sessions per week. This means you will get more one-on-one time with your teachers.

You will have access to different learning and teaching methods including:

  • online
  • educator-led delivery
  • tutorials
  • group work
  • laboratory and practical work (where it applies).

You will have access to additional activities designed to extend and improve your skills. These activities foster the skills you need to be an adaptable, resilient, confident and competent learner and employee.

Find out more about our First Year Model.

* Melbourne-based campuses only

The Bachelor of Social Work with Honours course consists of four years of full time university level study.  It aims to prepare students for effective professional practice as social workers in the social and community services sector, and to equip students with advanced knowledge and skills in preparation for further learning in the field of social research.


(a) General Objectives

The general objectives of the curriculum are associated with the liberal arts component of the BSW Course, which in time sequence precedes the professional component of the BSW course. The objectives of the liberal arts component of the BSW course at Victoria University are:

  • to obtain knowledge from the humanities and social sciences that informs social work;
  • to gain an understanding of the socioeconomic, political, psychological, and cultural forces that impinge upon people's lives;
  • to become aware of how society has developed and is organised; and
  • to obtain knowledge that enables students to broaden their understanding of themselves and the world.

(b) Professional Objectives

The objectives of the professional component of the BSW programs are:

  • to prepare students for professional social work practice;
  • to increase students' knowledge and understanding of social welfare in the Australian context, emphasising origins, ideological bases, development, functions, contradictions, administrative forms, and impacts on oppressed groups including Indigenous people, poor people, women, people of colour and people with disabilities;
  • to expand students' understanding of the historical development of social work and of social work practice, including its scope and limitations, its internal debates, and its interrelationship with other bodies of knowledge;
  • to introduce students to the origins, manifestations, dynamics, causes and consequences of social inequality and oppression;
  • to facilitate students' development of purposeful use of skills within a wide range of social work roles and methods of intervention necessary for the elimination of social inequality and obstacles to social functioning;
  • to enhance students' development, intellectual inquisitiveness, creative problem-solving skills, reflective practices, and proper use of a range of research methods; a facility for critical questioning, and a goal of life-long learning; and
  • to strengthen students' understanding of, and commitment to, social work purposes, values, ideals, beliefs, and identity; particularly to understand it from an anti-oppressive framework.

c)  Research Objectives

  • In addition to the general objectives and professional objectives detailed above, the Bachelor of Social Work with Honours provides students with first level research training;
  • Students undertake an Honours seminar in addition to their standard coursework, design, carry out and write a minor thesis about a small piece of research, under the supervision of an academic staff member;
  • This training prepares students for advanced roles in the social welfare field as well as preparing them to undertake further academic research at a postgraduate level.

What's a unit?

A unit or 'subject' is the actual class you'll attend in the process of completing a course.

Most courses have a mixture of compulsory 'core' units that you need to take and optional elective units that you can choose to take based on your area of interest, expertise or experience.


Each unit is worth a set amount of study credits based on the amount of time you study. Generally, 1 credit is equal to 1 hour of study per week.

Fees & scholarships

Fee type: Commonwealth Supported Place (CSP)

The amount you pay for your course depends on whether you’re a Commonwealth supported student or full-fee paying.

If you enrol in a:

To calculate the total cost of your course:

  1. Select which units you’d like to study.
  2. Look up the individual unit costs in the higher education unit of study fees list.
  3. Add up the relevant amounts.

Scholarships & assistance

Apply for a scholarship to help with your study costs.

We can help with fee assistance and advice.


Victoria University is committed to providing a transparent admissions process. Find out more about the university admission requirements for all applicants, and our commitment to admissions transparency.

Admission requirements

Applicants for this degree will need to have met the academic requirements and prerequisites for this course outlined below.

The minimum criteria for admission varies depending on your education background. If you’re not sure which criteria applies to you, use the help tool on this page or make an enquiry and we can assist.

Applicants with recent secondary education (within the last 2 years)

  • Australian Senior Secondary Certificate (e.g. VCE) or
  • an Australian or overseas equivalent or
  • an International Baccalaureate (IB).

Importance of ATAR for this course


We consider both ATAR and other criteria


ATAR is not a consideration. We use other criteria

Why is ATAR not applicable?

You will not need an ATAR score to meet the admission requirements for this course. Only the successful completion of your secondary school studies, and any additional prerequisites. Our courses and support programs are designed to prepare students from diverse cultures for success, regardless of their prior experience, ATAR, age, socioeconomic or educational background.

Entry requirements

Find out if you meet the admission criteria for a bachelor degree at VU.

Special admission programs

Special admission programs are available to applicants who may come from a disadvantaged social, economic or cultural environment. These include:

  • Special Entry Access Scheme (SEAS) for VTAC applicants
  • Early Entry Offer Program (EEOP)
  • Special Consideration

Applicants with vocational education and training (VET/TAFE) study

This information is for people who have completed an accredited award at an Australian Registered Training Organisation.

Entry requirements

Find out if you meet the admission criteria for a bachelor degree at VU.

Applicants with higher education study

This information is for people who have completed an Australian Senior Secondary Certificate (VCE or equivalent) and have also completed:

  • a higher education (university) qualification OR
  • at least 6 months of continuous study in an undergraduate or higher qualification, at an Australian university within the last 5 years.

Entry requirements

Find out if you meet the admission criteria for a bachelor degree at VU.

Applicants with work & life experience

This information is for applicants who left secondary school more than 2 years ago and do not have any formal academic history.

Entry requirements

Completion of the first three years of ABSW Bachelor of Social Work or equivalent with at least half of the completed Bachelor of Social Work units passed with a distinction average. Students accepted into the course will receive credit for all units already undertaken in their Bachelor of Social Work, normally consisting of a full three years of credit.

Pathways & credits

There are many ways you can start your education journey at VU. Pathways offer an easy transition between courses at different levels, so that you can start with a certificate and progress right through to postgraduate study.

If you have completed study with another university or institution and believe you are eligible to receive credit for skills and past study, you can apply for advanced standing.

Applications for advanced standing can be made after a discussion with your course coordinator or academic adviser.

How to apply

Applications for this course are not being taken at this time.

Browse our other Health & Biomedicine courses or send us an enquiry to be notified of updates relating to this course.

Enquire now

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At Victoria University, we aim to display accurate and complete course information online. However, we are unable to guarantee that every course change is currently displayed. You may contact the University directly on +61 3 9919 6100 to confirm the most up-to-date course fees, pathways and credit transfer, recognition of prior learning, admission and enrolment procedures, examinations and services available to our students.