This unit introduces students to Social Work concepts and practice, including its development and location within the social and community services sector. Workshops and recommended literature introduce students to key themes and debates in the development of social work in Australia and elsewhere. Students are expected to expand their understanding of social work as an activity shaped and constrained by social policy, legislation and organisations, as well as by a dynamic body of knowledge and skills, and a strong and explicit value and ethical base. 

Unit details

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Learning Outcomes

On successful completion of this unit, students will be able to:
  1. Develop skills to reflect and analyse the personal and professional dimensions of becoming a social worker;  
  2. Discuss social work practice as a diverse, purposeful activity, informed by core values, ethics, theory and knowledge;  
  3. Work collaboratively to explore contemporary social work practice within context and key discourses;  
  4. Demonstrate an understanding of the development of social work in Australia and its major international influences.  


Assessment type Description Grade
Assignment Video Interview 20%
Test Ethics and Practice Standards Quiz 10%
Project Professional Glossary and Knowledge Sources 30%
Presentation Team Presentation 40%

Required reading

The road to social work and service practice, 5th ed.
Chenoweth, L. & McAuliffe, D., (2017)
Cengage Learning, South Melbourne

Additional resources available on VU Collaborate.

Where to next?

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.

Study a single unit

This unit can be studied on its own, without enrolling in a full degree. Learn more about single units of study at VU.

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