Gain the skills, knowledge and understanding to work in the community welfare sector with a Diploma of Community Services CHC52015 at Victoria University Polytechnic.
This course will enhance your existing knowledge in direct service work and client support so that you can make a genuine difference in people’s lives.
You will learn to develop and deliver programs and services that meet various needs of individuals and families. We will train you to take a holistic approach by providing you with the knowledge to work with a diverse range of people, using a case management approach. You will also learn other skills such as advocacy, counselling and group work. As part of your studies, you will gain valuable practical experience through undertaking a fieldwork placement.
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Eligible students currently won’t pay tuition fees for this course.
Free TAFE courses align with skills and jobs that are in high demand from Victorian employers.
Find out more about Free TAFE.
Everything you learn at Victoria University Polytechnic has direct links to the real world. You’ll learn from teachers who have valuable industry contacts and the latest industry-standard skills and knowledge.
You’ll consolidate your skills through undertaking 400 hours of practical fieldwork placement in a community services organisation. Learning with us means you’ll get the hands-on training to be job-ready when you graduate.
The first placement period may commence from Semester 1, Term 3. The second placement period may commence from Semester 3, Term 6. Placements are for a minimum of two days per week. Individual arrangements are negotiated with host employers and students.
Placement hours are scheduled for 7.5 hours per day, however, actual times are negotiated with student and host employer.
COVID-19 vaccine requirement
In response to Victoria's Roadmap announced in September 2021, all students must have any COVID-19 vaccine prior to the commencement of placement.
- You must provide evidence of having the COVID-19 vaccine. If you are not compliant with this requirement you are not eligible to undertake a placement and progress within the course.
- You must be willing to undergo any additional checks and immunisations as directed by the University.
Victoria University Polytechnic believes in inclusivity, diversity and opportunity. We have a strong history of community engagement, working with organisations in the region to develop programs that meet local needs.
These partnerships benefit the communities near each of our campuses, and benefit our students too. By contributing to local projects, we can ensure our students’ skills are well matched to opportunities in the region, and create networks for future employment.
VU’s Learning Hubs are welcoming spaces where you can improve your study and employability skills.
Our students can attend Learning Hubs at one of five VU campuses.
We offer maths, writing, careers and English-language advice, and show you effective ways to study and manage your time.
Our programs include:
- drop-in sessions
- peer mentoring
- maths and writing resources
- resume and career guidance.
Full time: up to five days per week in class and placement attendance, 9.30am – 3.30pm weekdays. You will also need to complete scheduled e-learning tasks.
Please note that timetables are subject to change.
Careers in community services
The community services sector is one of Australia’s fastest growing sectors, and is expected to continue growing. The Diploma of Community Services CHC52015 from Victoria University Polytechnic can help you get your foot in the door, with an emphasis on the skills required to be an effective Community Services worker.
Working in community services is demanding but rewarding, and offers diverse opportunities. You could work in welfare organisations, government departments or not-for-profit organisations across a range of areas including:
- family and domestic violence
- child protection
- employment support
- group facilitator
- community corrections
- case worker
- client service assessor, and
- community services worker.
To be awarded CHC52015 Diploma of Community Services, a student must successfully complete a total of sixteen (16) units of competency, consisting of:
eight (8) core units, and;
eight (8) elective units, of which:
six (6) units must be selected from the electives listed in the CHC52015 Diploma of Community Services qualification, and;
two (2) units may be selected from the electives listed in the CHC52015 Diploma of Community Services qualification or any endorsed training package or accredited course – these units must be relevant to the work outcome.
All electives chosen must contribute to a valid, industry-supported vocational outcome as well as be approved by the Polytechnic.
VU Polytechnic delivers the electives listed in the ‘course structure and units’ below. These electives have been selected based on industry needs, graduate pathways and/or student and teacher feedback. Alternative suitable electives are only available via Recognition of Prior Learning (RPL) and Credit Transfer (CT).
Recognition of Prior Learning and/or Credit Transfers
Previous completion of units at the Polytechnic or any other Registered Training Organisation and/or previous attainment of skills and knowledge may be credited towards this course. Units must satisfy the completion rules of the training package and be assessed as appropriate by the Polytechnic.
This qualification reflects the roles of community services, case management and social housing workers involved in the managing, co-ordinating and/or delivering of person-centred services to individuals, groups and communities. At this level, workers have specialised skills in community services and work autonomously under broad directions from senior management. Workers are usually providing direct support to individuals or groups of individuals. Workers may also have responsibility for the supervision of other workers and volunteers and/or case management; program coordination or the development of new business opportunities.
Note: The Statutory & Forensic Child, Youth & Family Welfare specialisation, must be achieved in order to meet the minimum education requirements for child protection and youth justice practice in Victoria.
Fees & scholarships
Fee type for this course: VET
Fee type definitions
The amount you pay for your course depends on whether you’re offered a government subsidised place or a full fee-paying place.
Students who enrol in a:
- government subsidised place pay subsidised tuition fees (the government contributes the rest), and may be required to pay a Student Services and Amenities Fee along with any material fees
- full fee-paying place pay the full fee tuition rate (which includes Student Services and Amenities Fee and any material fees).
Find out more about:
- the Student Services and Amenities Fee (SSAF)
- ways to pay your fees
- important fee dates
- how to apply for a VE/TAFE refund
Scholarships & assistance
Apply for a scholarship to help with your study costs.
We can help with fee assistance and advice.
Admission & pathways
Meeting the minimum admission requirements does not guarantee you entry into this course. Some courses receive more applications than the number of places available. In this situation we will also assess your education, work and other relevant experience.
If you do not meet the minimum requirements you may be eligible for one of our special admission programs.
As part of the application process, applicants must complete a Pre-training Review (PTR) and undertake a literacy and numeracy (LN) assessment to determine suitability for admission and identify support needs.
Students are required to attend a face to face group interview and pre-training review on campus.
For employment and practical placement purposes, this vocational sector typically requires a current and satisfactory
Police Record Check and
Working with Children Check.
In response to Victoria's Roadmap announced in September 2021, all students must have any COVID-19 vaccine prior to the commencement of placement. Students will be required to provide evidence prior to commencement of placement. If students are not compliant with this requirement they are not eligible to undertake a placement and this will mean that they will not be able to progress within their course.
Failure to provide the required documents in the timeframe specified by the Course Coordinator, means you will be unable to undertake practical placement in a workplace and therefore not eligible to progress in this course.
The following are suggested sites you could visit to obtain these checks: -
Police Record Check - http://www.police.vic.gov.au/content.asp?Document_ID=274
- Working with Children Check - http://www.workingwithchildren.vic.gov.au/
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 any of the following course(s), you will be guaranteed a place in this course. In some cases you may receive credit for your previous study, reducing the time it takes to complete your course.
You will be guaranteed entry only.
You will be guaranteed entry only.
You will be guaranteed entry only.
You will be guaranteed entry only.
Find out more about pathways and credits.
Use our credit calculator to find out how much credit you could get towards your course, based on your previous study.
You may be able to complete your qualification sooner through formal recognition of your existing skills. This is known as Recognition of Prior Learning (RPL).
To receive RPL, we assess your previous work, education and life experiences against recognised qualifications. Applications for RPL can be made prior to enrolling.
Call us on 1300 TAFE VP (1300 823 387) to discuss RPL options with the course manager.
How to apply
Prior to enrolment, all applicants will be required to complete a literacy and numeracy assessment to assist with determining eligibility and to identify learning support needs.
Available start dates:
- 15 July 2022
Before you apply
Before starting your application, please read through the step-by-step VU Polytechnic application process to make sure you have all the necessary documents and information ready to successfully complete your application.
Before applying, you should consider whether you also want to apply for:
- Credit transfer/Recognition of prior learning (RPL): If you have significant experience or studies elsewhere you may be eligible for credit for some units of your course and not have to undertake them.
Apply direct to VU
Apply direct to VU using our admission centre, submit applications for one or more courses, track and save your progress and upload additional information.
Already a VU student?
If you are already a VU student, apply direct to VU using our Admissions centre to transfer into this course. Remember it’s best to be accepted into your new course before withdrawing from your current one.
After you apply
- It’s important to check for emails from us (which may go to your spam/junk folder).
- Complete any requests for information by the given dates, otherwise your application may not be considered
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