This unit reviews the history of community psychology and the national and international development of the discipline. Students gain an understanding of the impact of social systems on mental health. Philosophical underpinnings include examining psychology's role in the use of knowledge production and action for social justice, eg. students critically review the 'medical' model of mental health, power relationships, social capital, social institutions, health inequalities, blaming the victim and social exclusion. Within these parameters, notions related to multiple levels of analysis and prevention are highlighted, as well as tensions between deficit models versus competencies, and the issues of social identities, social inequalities and social processes.

Unit details

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Learning Outcomes

On successful completion of this unit, students will be able to:
  1. Clarify key concepts and values in community psychology;  
  2. Critically apply community psychology philosophical and theoretical approaches to a social issue;  
  3. Evaluate the psycho-political bases of community psychology; and  
  4. Critically review theories underpinning the aetiology and interventions in health and wellbeing.  


Assessment type Description Grade
Assignment Critical review and seminar presentation (2500 words) 30%
Essay Theoretical application essay (4000 words) 70%

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As part of a course

This unit is studied as part of the following courses. Refer to the course page for information on how to apply for the course.

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