Social Work Practice and Diversity

Subject 196-212 (2009)

Note: This is an archived Handbook entry from 2009. Search for this in the current handbook

Credit Points: 12.50
Level: 1 (Undergraduate)
Dates & Locations:

This subject has the following teaching availabilities in 2009:

Term 3, - Taught on campus.
Pre-teaching Period Start not applicable
Teaching Period not applicable
Assessment Period End not applicable
Last date to Self-Enrol not applicable
Census Date not applicable
Last date to Withdraw without fail not applicable

On campus

Timetable can be viewed here. For information about these dates, click here.
Time Commitment: Contact Hours: A 1.5 hour lecture and a 1 hour tutorial per week.
Total Time Commitment:

25 contact hours, 25 hours class preparation and reading, 25 hours assessment related tasks.


Admission into the Bachelor of Social Work.

Corequisites: None
Recommended Background Knowledge: None
Non Allowed Subjects: None
Core Participation Requirements:

It is University policy to take all reasonable steps to minimise the impact of disability upon academic study and reasonable adjustments will be made to enhance a student's participation in the University's courses. Students who feel their disability will impact on meeting this requirement are encouraged to discuss this matter with the Course Coordinator and the Disability Liaison Unit.


Ms Menka Tsantefski


School of Nursing and Social Work
The University of Melbourne
Level 5, 234 Queensberry St
Carlton Victoria 3053 AUSTRALIA
T: +61 3 8344 9400
F: +61 3 9347 4375

Subject Overview:

This subject will explore dimensions of diversity and difference and the implications for effective and ethical social work practice, particularly related to those peoples who have experienced historical disadvantage. Building on understandings of decolonisation, 'othering', power and identity, the subject will examine social work practice in a number of different cultural and social settings. Students will develop the skills and theory of critically reflective and context-sensitive practice.

Objectives: Upon successful completion of this lecture and tutorial series, students will have:
  • Developed a sound understanding of key concepts in the study of social work and diversity
  • Understood principles of anti-discriminatory practice, human rights and social justice and be able to demonstrate how these principles can be applied in practice
  • Expanded their knowledge base of the multi-dimensional ways in which people experience oppression due to social divisions
  • Understood how social work aims to enhance the position of marginalized groups to ensure existing inequalities are not reinforced
  • Reviewed effective social work practice with different groups
  • Reflected upon their own attitudes to marginalized groups and developed practice skills appropriate to the uniqueness of each individual and presenting concerns
  1. A 2000-word essay 50% (due mid-semester) and a 2000-word essay 50% (due at the end of semester).
  2. A hurdle requirement of a minimum of 80% attendance of tutorials required.
Prescribed Texts:

A subject reader will be available from the University Bookroom.

Promoting Equality (N Thompson), (2nd ed) Palgrave Macmillan 2003

Breadth Options:

This subject is not available as a breadth subject.

Fees Information: Subject EFTSL, Level, Discipline & Census Date
Generic Skills:
  • be able to critically analyse texts and practices;
  • be able to understand social, cultural, organisational and ethical contexts of practice;
  • be able to link theory to practice;
  • be able to communicate in speech and writing in ways relevant to both academic and practice contexts;
  • be able to undertake independent research.
Links to further information:

Formerly available as 196-413. Students who have completed 196-413 are not eligible to enrol in this subject. The subject dates and HECS/course fee census date for this subject change each year. Check your enrolment record for the correct census date for this subject.

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