Course essentials

VU course code:
Other locations:

The liberal arts components of the course will be available on both St Albans and Footscray Park Campuses. The Professional components will be available at Footscray Nicholson Campus.

4 years
2018: February
2018: A$10,400 per semester

Create a career that improves the quality of life and develops the potential of individuals, groups and communities.

Social workers perform a crucial role in helping people confront social problems and improving the quality of their lives. Your social work degree will open the door to careers in government, non-government, welfare and community-based organisations in many different roles.

You will undertake two industry-based education placements in different human service agency settings under the supervision of experienced social workers. The Social Work Field Education manual provides you with information about the course field education arrangements and requirements.

The Bachelor of Social Work is accredited by Australian Association of Social Workers (AASW). Upon completion social work graduates will also be eligible for membership with the AASW.


We are currently accepting applications for this course.

Methods of applying:

International students can apply directly to Victoria University using our online application system, or apply through an education agent.

Direct online applicationFind an education agent

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[Supp. Desc. Info] Bachelor of Social Work

Social Work Lecturer Doris Testa talks about the course.


The Bachelor of Social Work will open the door to a career where you can improve the quality of life and develop the potential of individuals, groups and communities. It will give you the knowledge and skills to help others resolve social problems, as well as further human rights, social justice and social development.

Job titles

  • Social worker
  • Community health centre counsellor
  • Youth worker
  • Drug and alcohol worker
  • Homelessness policy officer

Organisations employing social work graduates

Graduates can typically find employment in a wide range of roles in not-for-profit and charitable organisations, as well as the community and government sectors.


The average annual salary for a social worker is A$64,948 (Job Outlook).

Employment rates

Employment for social workers is expected to grow very strongly in the next four years. (Job Outlook).


Graduates of the Bachelor of Social Work can study an additional year and complete an honours thesis to graduate with a Bachelor of Social Work (Honours).

Course objectives

On successful completion of this course, students will be able to:

  1. Articulate and contextualise the role and value of social work in the community and prepare for professional social work practice;  
  2. Analyse and apply knowledge from related disciplines including the humanities and social sciences that informs social work;  
  3. Investigate how society has developed and is organised;  
  4. Critically analyse knowledge that enables students to broaden their understanding of themselves and the world;  
  5. Appraise knowledge and understanding of social welfare in the Australian context, emphasising origins, ideological bases, power relations, development, functions, contradictions, and administrative forms;  
  6. Critique social work theory and 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;  
  7. Appraise the origins, manifestations, dynamics, causes and consequences of social inequality and oppression;  
  8. Exemplify purposeful and ethical 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; and  
  9. Exhibit intellectual inquisitiveness, creative problem-solving skills, reflective practice, and proper use of a range of research methods, including a facility for critical questioning, and a goal of life-long learning.  

Course structure

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

  • 96 credit points of First Year Core studies;
  • 180 credit points of Core studies;
  • 2 x 36 credit points of Field Education studies (inclusive of 1,000 hours of Placement);
  • 36 credit points of Advanced Professional studies.

First Year Core Units

Year 2

Year 3

Year 4


Select three (3) Advanced Professional Units of Study (equivalent to 36 credit points) selected from the recommended list below. At least one must be an ASW unit of study.

Advanced Professional Units of Study

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

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.

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. We also encourage you to explore our study pathways to help you reach your goal.

  • TAFE: Completion of a cognate (similar discipline) Australian Diploma or Advanced Diploma (or equivalent) will be granted advanced standing of a maximum 96 credit points (Diploma) or 144 credit points (Advanced Diploma).
  • Year 12: Completion of an Australian Senior Secondary Certificate (VCE or equivalent) including Units 3 and 4: a study score of at least 25 in English (EAL) or 20 in any other English.
  • International: Completion of an Australian Senior Secondary Certificate (VCE or equivalent) PLUS IELTS (or equivalent): Overall score of 6.0 (with no band less than 6.0 in Listening, Reading, Writing and Speaking).
  • Mature: Applicants with relevant work, education and/or community experience will be considered for admission to the course.

English language requirements

Find out if you meet the entry requirements, including English language and academic requirements.

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 degree. 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.

Find out more about pathways and credits.

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 for this course

We are currently accepting applications for this course.

Methods of applying:

International students can apply directly to Victoria University using our online application system, or apply through an education agent.

Direct online applicationFind an education agent

If you have questions about your application, you can:

Information and fees listed above are for non-resident students. Fees are accurate at the time of viewing and will be subject to annual increases. Some courses require students to purchase equipment or clothing that they will need in the course. These equipment or clothing costs are not included in the course fees listed above and we recommend that you confirm these costs with the relevant college.

VU takes care to ensure the accuracy of this course information, but reserves the right to change or withdraw courses offered at any time. Please check that course information is current with the Student Contact Centre.