2 years full time or longer for part time
Delivery mode: 
In person
Application due dates:
Applications are not being taken at this time.


Prepare for a career as a Community Psychologist with a Master of Applied Psychology (Community Psychology) at Victoria University.

The Master of Applied Psychology (Community Psychology) at VU provides an accredited pathway to community psychology endorsement with the Psychology Board of Australia (PsyBA) as a fully registered psychologist. During your study, you will:

  • learn advanced theory and psychological practice skills
  • engage in practical classes and fieldwork placements
  • complete a minor master research thesis.

This is one of the only courses in Australia that leads to endorsement as a community psychologist. As such, it will teach you advanced methods to empower individuals, groups, organisations and communities to create positive social change. With a unique emphasis on systems thinking and social determinants of health and wellbeing, this course maximises your opportunities to apply your learning in community field placements.

You will apply a range of assessment, intervention and program development techniques at agencies across Melbourne and at the VU Psychology Clinic. For strong career outcomes, you will have opportunities to:

  • practise both face-to-face and using telehealth
  • facilitate group psychotherapy programs
  • apply for a placement at our Orygen outpost where you will gain experience in providing early-interventions for youth mental health.

Based on the scientist–practitioner model of advanced psychology training, this postgraduate psychology course combines practical classes and supervised practice to help you acquire and apply the following skills:

  • psychological and cognitive assessment, case formulation and diagnosis of a range of common and complex mental health issues affecting individuals, groups and communities
  • advanced ethical decision-making to provide person-centred and recovery-oriented psychological services across interprofessional practice settings
  • culturally sensitive and trauma-informed practice to assist your work in diverse communities
  • evidence-based interventions and advocacy to support the wellbeing of young people, adults, older adults, groups, families and communities.

The course adopts a lifespan framework, training graduates in a wide range of assessment and therapeutic techniques with children, young people, adults and older people. It offers a particular emphasis on addressing social determinants of health and wellbeing (e.g., discrimination, violence, social and economic exclusion). The approach embraces a reflexive and scientist-practitioner perspective, providing evidence-based interventions for promoting human flourishing and positive social change.

Over three practicum units, you will participate in a range of fieldwork placements, including the possibility of a placement at our Orygen outpost. At each placement, you will be supported under the direct supervision of experienced psychologists (with appropriate endorsement from the Psychology Board of Australia).

At  VU Psychology Clinic, you will have the opportunity to provide psychological services under close supervision to a culturally diverse community seeking support for a range of mental health issues.

By graduation, you will have completed 1000 hours of supervised practical placement experience.

Instead of juggling multiple units at the same time, at VU you can focus on one unit at a time over a four-week ‘block’, usually with three 3-hour workshop-style classes per week.

In each class, you will apply your knowledge and skills to contemporary, problem-based scenarios, drawn from the mental health sector.

You will develop your skills as a critical thinker, and work in partnership with your classmates and your teacher, who will be an experienced psychologist and researcher.

VU is only accepting applications for AMAC from second year applicants in 2024. That is those students who have completed or are completing a 5th year psychology sequence in 2023 or are completing first year of a two-year 5th and 6th year program in 2023 and wish to transfer. First year applications will be accepted again in 2025.

Due to limited places and a high volume of applications, it is important applicants apply early. If places are filled in the timely round, round two and three applications will not be considered, or applications may close early.

  • Round One (timely round) – Applications close Sunday 24 September 2023 (all applications submitted prior to Sunday 24 September 2023 will be considered as timely)
  • Round Two – Applications close Sunday 29 October 2023 (if places available)
  • Round Three – Applications close Sunday 26 November 2023 (if places available)

A reminder that applicants need to arrange two referee reports (one personal and one academic) via the Psychology Reference Portal.

Applicants also need to provide a resume/CV with their application and complete the supplementary form available as part of the application process.

Find more information about how to apply, below on this page.


The Master of Applied Psychology (Community Psychology) provides an accredited pathway to registration as a psychologist. After graduating, you can apply for two years of supervised practice in community psychology through the ‘registrar program’, after which you will become eligible to apply for endorsement in the area of Community Psychology with the Psychology Board of Australia (PsyBA).

Graduates of the Master of Applied Psychology (Community Psychology) at VU go on to have rewarding careers that match their passions and interests, in the following areas:

  • community mental health services and organisations
  • organisational, applied social, environmental, ecological and health psychology or related areas
  • community organising, advocacy and program development
  • research and evaluation
  • applied social, environmental health psychology
  • community psychology and related areas.

Graduates qualify for registration as a psychologist in Victoria and membership of the Australian Psychological Society (APS).

The program has been designed to meet the accreditation standards of the Australian Psychological Accreditation Council (APAC).

Course structure

To attain the Master of Applied Psychology (Community Psychology) students are required to complete: 

  • 192 credit points of Core studies.

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

  1. Interrogate and interpret social and psychological problems and interventions from community psychological perspectives, including understanding of collaborative care;  
  2. Critically analyse and adapt skills and strategies in social and psychological problem intervention to multiple levels of analysis and to different bodies of knowledge or professional practice;  
  3. Critically analyse psychological problems from different perspectives and levels, incorporating cultural responsiveness, including with Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander communities;  
  4. Critically apply intervention skills to a variety of contexts, including: program and policy design, implementation and evaluation; organisation and facilitation of groups and alliances; counselling and advocacy for individuals and groups and, the promotion and strengthening of social networks;  
  5. Assess and critically apply appropriate research methodologies and independent research skills to identify and analyse complex problems from a range of community and applied settings;  
  6. Conduct and report on research in groups and/or individually, that contributes to the professional evidence base of community psychology;  
  7. Exhibit advanced interpersonal and communication skills to debate and elucidate complex ideas and to engage with diverse individuals and multiple stakeholders;  
  8. Critically review ethical and professional conduct issues faced by practising psychologists and exhibit high standards of social and ethical responsibility;  
  9. Evaluate the interconnections between theory, research and professional practice from a diverse range of community psychological perspectives.  

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 definitions

The amount you pay for your course depends on whether you’re offered a Commonwealth supported place (CSP) or a full fee-paying place.

Students who enrol in a:

In addition to your tuition fees, you may also be charged a Student Services & Amenities Fee (SSAF).

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

Find out more about how to apply for our courses, and our commitment to admissions transparency.

Entry requirements

Completion of Bachelor Honours degree (or equivalent) in Psychology (accredited by the Australian Psychological Accreditation Council, completed within the last 10 years, with a minimum average of at least 75 in fourth-year sequence).
Completion of an Australian Graduate Diploma (or equivalent) in Psychology (accredited by the Australian Psychological Accreditation Council, completed within the last 10 years, with a minimum average of at least 75).

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.

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.

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 chair or academic adviser.

Additional information

Applicants will also be required to:
- Submit a completed VU supplementary information form.
- Provide two referee statements (one personal and one academic) submitted via Australian Psychology - Postgraduate Reference System at https://www.psychologyreference.org/
- Attend an interview (short listed applicants only)
- Obtain a Working with Children Check prior to being placed in a work placement setting, in accordance with the accreditation requirements and the Department of Justice.

Applicants with qualifications obtained overseas have their qualifications assessed by the Australian Psychological Society (APS).

How to apply

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

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

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